Walking to my car with a skirt on, it was a little chilly but I had no doubt with this predictably unpredictable Florida weather that the sun would not be absent from the day.
We had a unisex 60th birthday party for a Mr. and a Mrs. Winchester in Lutz ( pronounced Lootz) not (Lutt-z). Which was news to me. The set up was in their private backyard, five tables, friends, family, a little bit of alcohol and a lot of fun!
My biggest lesson from this event was how to plan for a unisex party, three very important things need to be considered: (1) drink options. Not everyone is going to like those stereotypically fru-fru girl drinks with an umbrella, nor will an ice cold brewsky be satisfying to the masses. (2) colors. Two colors that complement each other without being overly feminine like neutrals, or better yet, navy and yellow. (3) Location. Needs to be fitting for your party theme; your daughter and son are still under age 5, Chuck E. Cheese it is. Bachelor/bachelorette party, the club. An intimate 60th celebration, your backyard.
They also added several personal touches to the event, t-shirts for the two of them, drink bands, and a photo album to tell their story of being together since 1968. After so many years, Mr. and Mrs. are still all over each other and filled with love. And that’s the dream right? Strife, children, and body changes, all that, and love conquers.
From the outside looking in, I want a love like Mr. and Mrs. Winchester. A high survival rate. Happy Birthday to you both and wishing many, many, more.
We headed to a wedding reception in Ybor (pronounced ee-bor). I remember when I first moved down here and someone suggested I try a restaurant in Ybor. I tried googling the city and you should have seen all the crazy spellings I came up with. And Google was like, “I got nothing, man. No idea what you are talking about.” Then days later I passed the Ybor sign on 275 and CLICK, the light bulb came on. Ybor, like Yvonne. Florida, you and your city names, tricked me yet again.
Anywho, the reception for 200 guests was held at the Don Vicente of Ybor Inn. With such a large guest count a sit down dinner can be expensive per head in addition to the amount of space needed to seat everyone. In this instance a cocktail party was ideal. The couple loved the location and the entire bridal party was staying at the inn. It is limited on space for so many guests with a sit down dinner, but an absolute gem for hosting a cocktail party style reception with a few high top tables near the dance floor and DJ, intimate low tables scattered throughout with a well stocked bar keeps the crowd mingling.
Speaking of the DJ, the older couples took over the floor when Barry White’s “Can’t Get Enough of Your Love” came through the speakers and the DJ announced, “several of you youngsters were probably conceived to this song”. A visual I could have done without.
GAG REEL: While lining up the bridal party for introductions, I spoke with each tux and gown making my way to the Best Man, Maid of Honor, and the newly Dr. and Mrs. I explained the rundown to the four and they all smiled and nodded except for Nate, the groom. I asked, “Are you ok Nate? You just had an odd look on your face?” Simultaneously the three of them said, “oh, that’s just his face,” to which I responded with a giggle, “well now I know for next time.” AN HOUR LATER. The sister of the bride is making a toast, “Alyson is compassionate, kind, and caring, and I’m so glad she met Nate who has just as much compassion and love and kindness, and if any of you guys can find those expressions on his face, please let me know.” …..never heard a group laugh harder. Having being clued in early, the running joke all made sense and I had a little laugh myself.
BEFORE YOU LEAVE HOME: For the 60th birthday shindig, when working outside for any occasion always take a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. When you can’t find shade, creating your own is very important. Our poor DJ’s freshly shaven head was toasty red at the end of the party.
DID YOU KNOW: Once a hospital to the Tampa Bay area, the Don Vicente is listed as one of the most haunted places in Tampa.
Until the next time, straight from the New Girl: the good, the bad, and the honest truth.