Sweet 16 party checklist !

Here's a checklist when planning the sweet 16 birthday party:

 1.   Draw up the list of guests. Get guest addresses, phone numbers and email addresses.

 2.   Determine the budget.

 3.   Identify the style of the party. Is this going to be just a small event or a larger one ?
       Will it just be just family or would it also include a larger circle of friends of both
        the birthday girl and her parents ?

       Do you need to hire a party planner ?

 4.   Decide on the sweet 16 birthday party venue.
       Would it be at home, at a restaurant or a catering hall or a party center ?
       Visit the venue and check out the amenities.

      - What kind of rooms are available ?
      - What is the minimum number of guests required ?
      - What is the maximum number of guests required ?
      - What is the price per person ?
      - Is there a price difference between holding the sweet 16 birthday
         party on weekday versus weekends ?
      - Is there a price difference between holding the party during the day time versus night time ?
      - What is the birthday party payment schedule ?
      - What types of payment are accepted ?  Personal check/bank check/credit card ?
      - What is the policy for paying gratuities ?
      - What is the cancellation policy ?
      - How many hours can we hold the party for ?
      - Is there an option to extend the hours ?
      - What is the cost to extend the party hours ?
      - What are the items on the menu ? Are there any options for special requests for e.g. vegetarian meals ?
      - What kind of sweet 16 birthday cakes are available ?
      - Can we order special design for the sweet 16 birthday cake ?
      - What kind of beverages are served ?
      - What type of  desserts are served ?
      - Is there an ice cream bar ? (Very popular !)
      - What kind of decorations could we use for the room ?
      - Do we have to pay for a security personnel to monitor the sweet 16 birthday party ?

       Remember that popular catering places are booked up fast. If the birthday falls during the summer
       months, you may be competing with brides that have probably booked the place at least one year in

  5.  Shop for the sweet 16 birthday party DJ and/or party photographer/video specialists.
       - Is the DJ going to show a montage of the birthday girl pictures on  a projector screen ?
       - How big is the screen ? How many screens are available ?
       - Are there extra charges for using these screens ?

  6. Gather the favorite pictures of the birthday girl taken throughout the years to use for the
      picture montage to be shown at the party. Scan them onto a UBS device and pass them to the
      DJ/video specialists to prepare the picture montage for the projector screen.

  7. Think of a special song to be played during the father-daughter dance. Let the DJ know of your song selection.

 8.  Shop for the sweet 16 birthday party dress, dress shoes and accessories.
       Take into account that the dress may need alteration hence you may need to shop earlier.
       Every sweet 16 birthday girl want to feel like a princess hence a beautiful tiara is in order !

  9.  Decide on the sweet 16 birthday party decorations and order them.

       If you going to use flower settings for the tables, shop around for the best prices.

  10.  Order the sweet 16 birthday party invitations, thank you cards and stamps.
         Send out the invitations at least a month in advance.

 11.  Shop for sweet 16 birthday party favors and packaging. They don't have to be expensive.
         For example, special inscribed candies like M&M are very popular.

 12.  Shop for the sweet 16 birthday party accessories if necessary. For example, party glow sticks are very
        popular with teenagers during the party dance hours.

 13.  Shop for birthday gifts for the sweet 16 birthday girl !

 14.  Shop for corsages for the sweet 16 birthday girl. Make sure the color matches the party dress.

15.  If the birthday girl is doing the 16 candles ceremony, have her prepare the list of 16 people that have shaped her          life the most. Start writing down how each person has contributed to her growth.

16.  Make appointment for the hair or makeup if necessary.

17.  Miscellaneous - are the cameras/video cameras working properly ? Are the batteries fully charged ?

Celebrate with joyful noise and have a safe and good time !

Post-party considerations - college planning


1. The party girl may have received money gifts for presents. It is  
    never too late to start saving for a college fund if you have not 
    done so.

2. Perhaps you want to look into the 529 Plan, a college savings
    plan offered by many states. Some states offer tax savings when 
    you open a 529 Plan. 

Please contact your tax and financial advisors for more information on 529 Plans.