Olivia’s bat mitzvah celebration was both incredibly touching and fun. I (Christine) had never photographed a bat mitzvah party before, and Olivia’s was a perfect introduction. Olivia is a sweet young woman. She and her family have such a great sense of humor – I had a blast!
The celebration took place at Temple Beth Or in Raleigh, which was decorated with a cool graffiti theme. Olivia and her family spray painted some paint cans and a garbage can themselves and collected subway tickets for the table centerpieces.
After a social hour for the adults and games for the kids, everyone came together in the congregation hall for dancing to music spun by DJ Kate from Across the Pond DJ Entertainment. There was also posing for some photos at the Red Carpet Event Photo Booth with some hilarious props. The atmosphere was high energy and completely contagious.
Next up was a buffet dinner and then a video montage with photos of Olivia throughout her life. The photos of Olivia with her family and friends alternated between funny and sweet – cracking everyone up and even bringing a few tears to many eyes. After that, Olivia’s parents and brother brought a few friends and family to the front to toast Olivia. As part of family tradition, the first toast was a parody of a song – ABBA’s “Dancing Queen.” I’ll admit, I still find myself singing it.
DJ Kate got the music started again and after a bit, Olivia and her friends surprised many of the guests as they swarmed the dance floor flash mob-style and started a choreographed dance to James Brown. The dancing continued as everyone grabbed hands and started dancing the hora. As Olivia was sat in a chair and hoisted in the air, I was touched by the love and energy as everyone came together to celebrate such an important milestone in Olivia’s life. Mazel tov!