Friday, April 26, 2013

"The Love Boat" Bon Voyage Party!

If you are a party planner that's trying to make it the business, your goal is to get your parties out there- for the WORLD to see. I have had one party in the last few months that has been featured so many places now that even I am sick of it (OK, you made me say it- PETER PAN!). Totally my fault. I have caught myself yelling at the computer, "Get OVER the Peter Pan Party! I hate Miss Party Mom!" a few times, only to quickly realize... "Oh crap... that is MY party... I AM Miss Party Mom". Yikes.

Anyway, today I am blogging about a party I did last Summer (June, 2012) that am NOT sick of. Every time I look at this party I want to sail away on a cloud of happiness. It was THAT good.

I was contacted by my husband's cousin, Daisy, and her husband Scott, who happen to live just 40 minutes up the coast from us in San Luis Obispo (we have no other family on the Central Coast so it's great to have someone near us). They were looking to throw a  "Love Boat" Bon Voyage Party for the pastor of their church who was moving to a new congregation down South. Pastor Jane's all time favorite TV show was "The Love Boat" and they were ready to party Love Boat style! I truly knew nothing about the show- (other than it had some awesome 80's dress up opportunities) so I hopped on Amazon and ordered a box set of DVD's and got to work. With Hannah at my side (queen of random trivia) we put together a fantastic event that even WE had a great time partying at (maybe too much fun?!)

This was my 4th paid party and it's been the biggest budget I've worked with by far. I was new to the business and learned A TON about throwing a big party (130 people): arranging a caterer, DJ, cake decorator, rental company and coordinating and paying a 10-person staff to help with set up and manning the event. Oh and that little thing called budgeting. It was nothing short of a wedding, without the bride and groom!

We wanted to incorporate two themes in to the party since their were two ideas we were trying to hit on: "The Love Boat" and "Bon Voyage Jane!"

With the Love Boat theme we wanted to touch on a lot of the shows elements like the Princess Cruise Ship where the show took place. I wanted to give the guests the feeling of actually being on a Princess Cruise the minute they entered the backyard. In order to do this, we researched cruise ships and came up with the following "must-haves" for the night: cruise itinerary, cruise destinations, Love Boat character costumes, dinner & dessert buffet, pools, casino, "deck" photo op, shuffleboard, lido deck, open bar, great music, babysitters for the kids and of course a "uniformed" staff to make the theme complete!

For the "Bon Voyage" aspect I focused on a scrapbook station (one for the adults and one for the kids) as well as a letter-writing area where church members could let Jane know how special she'd been to them. The photo station was set up to take two sets of the same "photo booth" style photos so that guests could keep one for themselves and put one in the scrapbook!

Although this party was featured on Kara's Party Ideas a few months after the party- I didn't really understand what a "party description" was back then (ROOOOKIE!) so it really lacked any detail on the party. As we're approaching Summer I feel like anything nautical is the PERFECT theme for a baby shower (I'll be also doing one this Summer), bridal shower ("Love Boat"- come on!), 1st Birthday Party, etc.

I hope you enjoy!

                                                                 xo Party or Die xo



Vendor Credits-

Event Styling: Kenna @ Miss Party Mom Event Planning
Photography: Christina @ Moments Captured Photography
Desserts: Hannah @ Hannah's Cookies and Treats
Love Boat Ship Cake: Kelli Cakes
Printables and Graphics by Jodi @ joliodesign
Love Boat Printable Graphic: Party Scribbles


  1. The staff here was so great in helping us with vegetarian meals and the most adorable meals for the kids at our wedding (Sliders with French-fries) and Shirley Temples to toast.

  2. This written piece gives fastidious understanding yet. weddings

  3. I just love your itinerary idea... is it possible to get the template you used? Thanks

  4. We are doing a cruise theme for our Project Graduation party. Where did you get your Photo Booth back drop?


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