Sunday, December 16, 2012

Reliving the Magic....

By Lisa:  It’s not the holiday season until Kansas City Ballet’s The Nutcracker and the dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy.  As Kansas City Ballet celebrates it’s 40th production of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker, choreographed by Todd Bolender.

Making memories is what the holiday season is all about. Attending The Nutcracker has always been a tradition that my daughter, Amelia and I have shared.  We attended our first mother-daughter Nutcracker when Amelia was just three years old in Boston, Massachusetts.  I will never forget when she first saw Clara on stage and said to me “mommy one day I’m going to be Clara”.  The night of her 13th birthday I watched with tears in my eyes as my daughter's dream came to life as she danced the role of Clara to a sold out audience at Kansas City’s Music Hall. Even though my daughter is now 17 and a junior in high school, the tradition still continues. We attended today’s matinee to “relive the magic”.  

Amelia Jones - Clara 2008

Another annual tradition associated with Kanas City is The Sugar Plum Fairy Luncheon, Kansas City Ballet School’s primary fundraiser that kicks off The Nutcracker season. In 2007 I had the honor to chair the luncheon and coordinate this prestigious event.  As with each luncheon a theme was chosen from a scene in The Nutcracker.  In 2007 it was the mystical “Land of Snow”.  As the guests arrived they were treated to a mimosa and punch. The foyer was lit up providing an interlude to the décor waiting inside the ballroom. Victorian carolers strolled through the silent auction as the children were memorized with a Paul Mesner Puppet Show;

Tiffany snow scene votive
At exactly 11:50 AM the doors of the ballroom were chimed open as the guest entered the ballroom to be amazed by a European winter’s day.  The room glistened with snowflakes hanging from the ceiling; beautiful snow capped flocked trees bordered the stage, and each table reflected the glow of the Tiffany votive centerpiece designed by Studio Dan Meiners;  Each of the 700 guests was treated to a three-course meal and each child was brought up on stage to gather around Miss Kansas as she read the story of The Nutcracker.  As the luncheon concluded the guests were excused to continue their day at the opening matinee performance of Kansas City Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker;

2007 Kanas City Ballet Sugar Plum Fairy Luncheon
Downtown Marriott Muehlebach Hotel

So as we rekindle the memories of our past we are reminded that the most precious gift we can give during this holiday season is our time.  Our annual mother-daughter Nutcracker outings are memories that we both will treasure for all time.   And, with God’s blessing, someday I’ll share them with both my daughter and a granddaughter.

When you are ready to create that mystical event that will have you “reliving the magic” for many years to come, contact Millie’s Event Designs and let us help make your dreams come true!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Deck the Halls with Fox 4 and Millie’s Event Designs.

By Lisa:  A Wonderful Christmastime.  Hosting a holiday party was the theme for Monday’s segment on Fox 4. 

Kim Byrnes and Lisa Salley Jones 

First, we welcome each guest with a candy cane cocktail to get them in the spirit.  The signature drink we are serving is “The Grinch”!  It is a green cocktail that has none of the nasty elements of Dr. Seuss’s classic holiday character.  On the contrary, it’s reminiscent of the changed Grinch with the sweetest flavors; melon-flavored Midori and lemon juice.  Add a ring of red sugar around the glass to represent the changed heart of the green man.  As your guests sip on the cocktail, be sure to offer our Christmas cookie shaped pizza bites.

As your guests make their way into the dining room, they need not look any further than a mirror to find their seat.   We have placed a mini picture frame with each guests’ picture at their designated place setting.  The table has been decorated with a white linen tablecloth complemented with an embroidered red satin runner.   Just in case you can’t remember Santa’s team, we got you covered by having linen napkins with each reindeer’s name for our reindeer games!  Christmas china displaying all the holiday trimmings along with the sterling antique flatware brings together an elegant holiday dinning atmosphere. 

After dinner, while your guests are feeling in the holiday spirit, continue the evening with a simple ornament exchange.  Your guest can trim their tree with their “new” handmade or hand-picked ornament, while drinking their Baileys hot chocolate garnished with marshmallows; a wonderful parting gift that each guest received as they said their good-byes.

Don’t be a Grinch or a Scrooge this Christmas!  Call on Millie’s Event Designs and grow your heart three sizes with holiday season cheer!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Newhouse’s “Fabulous 40’S” Gala 2012

By Lisa:  This past Saturday evening, Kansas City’s Sheraton Crown Center hosted an annual signature event, a “Fabulous 40’s” themed, House Party 2012 for the Newhouse domestic violence shelter.

As each guest entered the ballroom, we were welcomed to a beautifully staged silent auction.  There were gifts to bid on from signed sports memorabilia, wine tasting parties, bath & beauty products, to children’s gifts they would welcome come Christmas morning.

At 7:15, the guest entered the adjoining room where we stepped back in time to the 1940’s nightclub décor.  The guests were welcomed by three-year house party emcee, Curtis Jay, co-anchor of 41-Action news today and midday.  Chairwoman, Vicki Kraft welcomed everyone and introduced Pastor Laura Murphy who gave the dinner’s invocation. 

Emcee Curtis Jay(left) with Lisa Salley Jones

We were treated to a fabulous plated chopped salad, assorted breads and a creamy cheesecake topped with diced apples drizzled with a buttery sweetness sauce.  The entrée was a spinach feta stuffed chicken breast complimented with oven-roasted potatoes and garnished with assorted vegetables.   

The program continued with an award showdown trophy presented to the alums of the University of Missouri who bested their Kansas and Kansas State rivals for most funds raised.  Emcee Curtis Jay then introduced this year’s event chair Renee Grisson, who welcomed and thanked each major contributor and sponsor to the Newhouse House Party 2012.  This year’s honorary co-chair Brad Manson was welcomed to podium to speak about his mother’s and family’s involvement with and passion for the women and children’s shelter.  Newhouse President/CEO Jim Bogle then spoke on the improvements and expectations for Newhouse going forward.

It was then on to the “live” auction which was emceed by Kansas City’s own Missy Koonce, actress, director, producer and singer.  In a matter of minutes over $80, 000 was raised from the generous patrons and their guests.  The guests then danced into the night to tunes from the 40’s by Missy Koonce and Friends.

As we approach the seasons of Thanksgiving and Christmas, may you find it in your hearts to be as generous as the patrons and friends of the Newhouse were this wonderful fun-filled evening!

Sunday, November 4, 2012


Celebrating the  Spookiest  Season….

By Lisa: Celebrate the spookiest season with an annual neighborhood block party.

As the leaves become vibrant in color and the autumn air turns cool, pumpkins and witches become the décor of choice.  Each Halloween the residents of Colony West are treated to a spectacular evening at the home of Marque Ann Barton. 

Marque Ann Barton and Catherine Allen


Spooks and goblins come out, come out…

This Halloween night was no exception. With neighbors gathering together having a bowl of chili and hot dogs complimented with eye catching desserts.  Each guest was treated to a beverage of their choice.

For all your fright night fun, contact Millie’s Event Designs to help you plan your most spooktacular Halloween ever….