The Birthday Party Project comes to DC!

This past Saturday I had the pleasure of volunteering with The Birthday Party Project, a wonderful organization based in Dallas, Texas. 

The Birthday Party Project's mission is to bring joy to homeless children through the magic of birthdays. The organization has been around for 4 years and has celebrated over 3,000 birthdays with over 19,000 partygoers in attendance. In all, 7,500 "birthday enthusiasts" have volunteered to take part in these wonderful celebrations. The Birthday Party Project is now active in 11 cities around the country -- and Washington, DC was recently added to that list! 

I had been following the Birthday Party Project's progress for about two years and was VERY excited when I received an email notifying me they were launching a DC chapter. I would finally be able to become a "birthday enthusiast" and align myself with an organization that shares many similar values. (Their Instagram hashtag is #joychangeslives. How can you not get on board with that?!) 

So while I couldn't make it to the first party in July, last Saturday I drove down to Nationals Park to take part in the August birthday celebration. The Nationals has been kind enough to donate tickets, giveaways, food (hot dogs, funnel cakes, cotton candy - you name it!), and even organized a visit from Screech, the Nats' mascot. 

Our group at the Nats game!

Our group at the Nats game!

It might have been 95 degrees out, but none of us cared as the kids made posters, ate all sorts of food (including yummy Bundtinis from Nothing Bundt Cake), and cheered on the Nats. For most of the kids (if not all), it was their first time at a professional baseball game so they sat back and took in the experience, observing all of the action on the field and on the big screen. 

It was a wonderful day full of smiles and celebration. I can't wait until I get to participate in another party!

If you'd like to learn more about how you can help The Birthday Party Project bring joy to more children, please click here

 


 

[FEATURED] Brides.com + Creative Ways to Use Trees at Your Wedding

Brides.com asked us for our opinion again and, as usual, we didn't hold back. This time they asked us about creative ways to use trees in your wedding decor.

Creative Ways to Use Trees at Your Wedding | LIG Events - Washington, DC Wedding and Event Planners

There are so many ways to use trees in your event spaces that I practically wrote a novel on different ways to use them. I also included one very key piece of advice regarding scale that you should take into account when considering any type of large decor element -- not just when you're thinking about trees in particular. 

If you're interested in all of the possibilities trees have to offer, head on over to the post on Brides.com and let me know your thoughts below in the comments section! 

 


On Event Hashtags

I've written about smartphones and weddings before, but today I thought I'd share my thoughts on event hashtags.

In an increasingly social media focused world, event hashtags have become a great way to "track" events. By giving guests a custom hashtag that is specific to the event (i.e. #EandS16 or #brandlaunch), 

Event Hashtags | LIG Events - Washington, DC Wedding and Event Planners

For corporate events, hashtags are important as they provide a way to evaluate certain metrics that brands value. Those statistics are important for corporate marketing strategies and go a long way in determining the perceived success of a promotional event.

When speaking in terms of weddings or social events, however, hashtags take on a different purpose. In general, they are a great way to pool all of the partygoers' photos in one place. Wouldn't it be great to take a moment at the airport as you jet off on your honeymoon to look at all of the photos everyone took throughout the night? Yes, I think it must be pretty cool and fun. (Not going to lie -- I love going through my clients' hashtags a few days after an event to see photos showing how much fun everyone had at their party!)

But where I get a little weary with hashtags is when a private event is Instagrammed heavily and MANY people find out about it. What happens is your little private corner of Instagram with that obscure hashtag you didn't think anyone would find out about has been made public and everyone can look in and see your wedding.

I have seen nasty comments from strangers on wedding posts saying things like "Wow, she should not have worn that dress" or "Must be nice to have that money" and that just rubs me the wrong way. Events are supposed to be celebrations. The negativity and judgmental attitudes that exist on the internet should not overshadow the happiness of the celebration! 

I am a firm believer in client confidentiality, which is why hashtags make me fret. I feel that if you're agreeing to publish your photos in a magazine or on Style Me Pretty, you know that you're opening yourself up to the good, the bad, and the ugly. But publishing photos on Instagram is so routine these days that you may not be consciously thinking of the choice you are making in letting everyone see your private wedding photos. 

So, while I LOVE Instagram, I just ask that you think about the choice you're making in encouraging everyone to post using your hashtag. My answer on the subject definitely varies depending on the event. Sometimes it's appropriate and sometimes it's not. So choose wisely!

Would you hashtag your wedding? Let us know in the comments!