Sweet 16 Party

Boys Turn 16 Too -16yr- Formal Wear




Sweet 16 Party


Cecilia in Valrico, Fl, US


April 2006


Honorable Mention

Boys turn sixteen too!!!  For my sons sixteenth birthday I wanted to plan something really special.  After visiting the party idea web site... the wheels began to turn and I made some really great ideas my own.   I struggled with a theme that would fit a boy... I finally decided because he only turns sixteen once, we would go formal...  He went along reluctantly at first. 

I began with sending out tuxedo invitations that I found on the stumps(prom) web site.  The invitations were very formal but were priced within budget. A black tuxedo incased a grey shimmering card that told the details of the party.  It would be formal to semiformal dress...I was a little nervous about what the response would be.  But everyone was very excited to have an opportunity to get dressed up.  Many of the guys went all out and rented tuxes and most of the girls wore long formal wear...The venue was perfect it was an elegant hall with high ceilings and a wooden dance floor. 

There were floor to ceiling windows that overlooked a lake with a board walk.  In the middle of the lake was a lighted fountain that just added to the atmosphere.  The first big task was finding a decorating theme that was masculine.   After looking at the prom décor on the stumps website, I decided that black tie was both elegant and masculine.

The décor would be in black and silver.  We would bring top hats and stars as elements for décor.  I hired a balloon artist that would sculpt two shooting star pillars to set off the dance floor.  The 9ft pillars would be alternating black and silver balloons that curved over the dance floor with a giant star at the end.  The top of the pillar would have small silver balloon stars hanging from curling ribbon.  It gave the effect of a comet.  My best break was finding battery operated fiber optic lamps to use as centerpieces (on a novelty website).   I had black linen table cloths and in the center was a mirrored tile (home depot).  I placed the fiber optic spray on top of the mirror.  It was so cool with the lights dimmed.  Everyone went crazy for them. 

I also had balloon centerpieces that I attached with fishing wire to the fiber optic lamps.  The balloons were high enough everyone could see and they filled up the room. We used silver paper products.   To dress it up, I made personalized napkin rings that matched a banner I had made that was displayed at the entrance.  As favors I order black and silver mardi gra beads.  The beads had top hats on them.  To personalize the beads I ordered round plastic tokens from the (  The black tokens had a silver top hat in the center, around the edge read John Wesley's sixteenth birthday bash.  I bought c-rings from a crafts store and attached them to the beads.  It takes a while make sure you have help or a lot of time.

I had a video that highlighted his life including his friends, sports, and family.  We had a great video The video started with the switchfoot song that goes welcome to the planet.welcome to existence and showed his birth date and even his sonogram. It was really neat.  During the segment with all his sports pictures, it was given a cool effect by running things in slow motion and adding different angles.  Make sure you get a professional or someone who is not just putting pictures together.  It will make a difference.  The evening was centered around our next event which was a blessing ceremony.  Imagine a bar mitzvah, but different.  No poems!

There were 16 honorees that were asked to speak a blessing over my son's life.  For instance, they would say may you blessed with divine health.  May you live a long and healthy life free of disease and absent of harm. Each honoree would light a candle until sixteen candles were lit.  Representing 16 spoken blessings.  I ask each honoree to write their blessing down.  I will later combine them into a book and give them to my son to keep. While this was the main point of the evening.  I made sure to limit the time so not to lose my audience.  Immediately following the blessing ceremony, the DJ moved directly into the high energy aspect of the evening.

The rest of the evening took place on dance floor.  We used caters that gave us teen friendly food, wings, pizza rolls, and make your own nachos..  The cake was wheeled in on cart decorated with giant number balloons 16. I had sparkler candles that made a dramatic effect with the lights dim.  The end of the video was still playing with the sounds of fireworks exploding as the cake was wheeled in.   

We had the party of a Thursday when the next day was a holiday.  This cut the cost of the venue in half but it didn't affect the attendance at all. Very seldom do things every live up to my expectations but this party did.  I could use the money in a lot of different places, but he is only sixteen once you have to hold on to every moment that you can.

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