April 17, 2024
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April 17, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Get the Party Started with Sbektacular Soirées

Tables set for hungry roller skaters.

Rebekah Mally was all set to finish her master’s degree in social work. Her kids were a little older, and she was ready. Her grandmother knew that wasn’t her future. “You’re not going back to school,” she told her granddaughter. “You put on beautiful parties and you’re so happy when you’re hosting. This is what you’re going to do.” Instead of finishing her degree, Mally started Sbektacular Soirées to share her love of event planning with people making simchas, birthday parties, nonprofit receptions and business events.

The pandemic shut down big parties just as Mally was ready to launch the business, but there was a silver lining. “The week before COVID hit, I had all of my paperwork to start the business,” Mally recalled. “All of a sudden, I was a party planner with no parties.” She learned that people were still having celebrations but small ones; they were happy to hire her for backyard parties. That gave Mally a chance to start slowly and develop a reputation for producing beautiful, well-run events. “Once the world opened up and we got going, it was like, off to the races. There was no break. It was fantastic.”

Bar and bat mitzvah parties have a special place in Mally’s heart. “I love working with kids and the creative aspect of making unique parties for them,” she said. When someone calls Mally to ask about planning a bar/bat mitzvah party for their child, they usually have some idea of the direction, even if it’s just that their son loves basketball and wants a sports-themed event. To get a better idea of the person, Mally sends a “jot form” with questions such as “What do you do in your free time?” “What are your hobbies?” and “What are your favorite colors?” She tries to understand who the bar/bat mitzvah child is. Then she puts together a “vision board” with photos from events she’s done, her vendors have done, or something she sees on Pinterest that has potential. She reviews the board with the family and uses their feedback to make decisions. “I want my clients to have the party they’re visualizing,” she said. “I want it to be even better than what they see in their head.”

A bat mitzvah party by Sbektacular Soirées.

A party Mally planned recently had a roller-skating theme. The easy way would have been to have the party at a rink. But she brought the rink to the party. She rented roller skates—the host had collected the guests’ sizes in advance—and rented cubbies for them. She put the skates in cubbies and attached a removable vinyl sticker with the bat mitzvah’s logo and the name of the girl whom the skates were for, on each cubby. She also helped her client order socks as part of the swag for all the kids and adults to wear with their skates. The skating was followed by a festive meal with beautifully set tables.

American Dream was the site of another fabulous bar mitzvah party from Sbektacular Soirées. For two hours, the kids had a blast at the Nickelodeon amusement park and then went to the mall’s stunning skyline room for dinner, music and dancing.

Mally helps clients bring their vision and their budgets in line. When someone asks what a bar/mitzvah costs, she can give them a range from a fun, low-key pizza and bowling party to a weekend in a hotel with Shabbat meals and a party. She helps clients make the best use of their budgets both for her services and the party. When a client has a limited budget and wants to focus on one aspect, like flowers, or the entertainment, she will help them choose vendors she knows will be cost-effective yet still deliver excellent services and products.

Mally can plan the entire gathering, with all vendors, or help with certain aspects. “I’ve had clients who come to me and say, ‘Here’s my budget, here’s my theme, let me know when it’s done.’ And I’ve had clients who say, ‘I have my vendors but I need you to bring it all together.’” She charges by the hour and checks in with the client frequently about how her time is adding up so there are no surprises.

Cubbies with roller skates.

Of course, a bar/bat mitzvah is more than a birthday party. Mally likes to encourage chesed projects to inspire boys and girls to develop the mindset of thinking beyond themselves and helping others. Many families are now raising money to help people in Israel who continue to suffer from the Hamas massacre and ensuing war. Mally’s daughter will be a bat mitzvah next year and has started raising money for United Hatzalah. The family was in Israel on October 7 and had been to a benefit concert for Hatzalah before then. Mally said her daughter was very moved by hearing founder Eli Beer and volunteers talk about how they saved lives with a defibrillator, and ambucycles which could get help to patients in the fastest time. She told her mother she wanted to raise money for Hatzalah as her bat mitzvah project. Her website is now live at https://israelrescue.org/mymitzvah/yael-mallys-bat-mitzvah/

Unlike a wedding, you can plan a bar/bat mitzvah party well in advance. Mally advises starting at least one year ahead, earlier if you have your heart set on a popular venue, entertainer or photographer. Some are booked years ahead. But she notes that there are many talented people in our community and plenty of venues—she’s never come up without a full complement of providers.

What Mally wants most is to give her clients a stress-free process so they can enjoy their perfectly planned party and stay calm. If you’re planning a simcha, party, organization or business event, contact Rebekah Mally at 732.397.7663 or [email protected]. Follow on https://www.instagram.com/sbektacularsoirees

Announcement at American Dream for a bar mitzvah party at Nickelodeon. (Credit: Rebekah Mally)
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