Thursday, 3 April 2014

Planning the Jack and Jill

Jack and Jill wedding fundraisers seem to be one aspect of a wedding that create quite a bit of controversy among guests. Some people hate them with a passion! They see them as a "money grab" and one more thing that they have to cash out for (in addition to presents, outfits, babysitters etc.). While I agree that couples shouldn't PROFIT off of their wedding, I think that Jack & Jill's can be fun and cost party-goers no more (in reality probably less) than a night out on the town or dinner at a nice restaurant. Why not spend Saturday night helping out the bride & groom if you're going to go out and do something anyway? Again, in moderation: a couple I know had a Jack and Jill despite having the wedding PAID for by their parents and simply pocketed the cash from the Jack & Jill. In my opinion that is wrong but throwing one to help pay for your wedding is totally okay! In many cases young couples really need that extra money to front the bills. I've been to a couple and for any friends whose party I couldn't attend I bought a ticket to support them anyway. I think they're fun and don't cost any individual person too much.

We're throwing our Jack & Jill in June. Interestingly, I couldn't find many tutorials or blogs on the internet so I've decided to write my own.

My Dream Jack & Jill

My dream Jack & Jill would have been a party outside, preferably on a friend's farm or in a backyard, where we could sell alcohol ourselves, have a BBQ and serve delicious homemade food. Good music, great weather and all of our friends would be there. I think this would have been the best profit margin if we had the perfect place to host it with a pre-existing sheltered area. Unfortunately, we don't have such a place to use and to rent one or rent a tent for a backyard would have been far too expensive. (Tent rental = up to $2K in our area).  Plus, we would have had to pay for additional things like tables & chairs, either a DJ or a sound system, portable outhouses ... it adds up quickly and suddenly becomes almost like the wedding! Sadly, we realized an outdoor party wasn't the best way to make money.

The Reality

So, my dreams are not going to come true for the Jack & Jill. My bridesmaid who took event planning in school reassured me that they were taught that outdoor events are often way more expensive than indoor ones. Plus, we're having my dream wedding at the most amazing outdoor venue I could ever imagine so I decided I could take a loss on this one. That left us with the question: where else could we host the party? A country legion or hall is just about my worst nightmare. It's too country for me; they just aren't my style of party at all. I want something a little more chic and trendy. So we compromised by finding a hall type venue in town.

The Venue

  • Must be cost efficient (the average rate was $300 in our area for a hall-type space)
  • Must have a cash bar with enough bar tenders to keep party go-ers happy
  • Must have room for fun & games and a dance floor
  • Must either have reasonably priced food or allow you to bring in your own
  • Must allow you to stay until a decent hour
  • It's a bonus if... they have a sound system that allows you to plug in an ipod save on the cost of a DJ for the night
We crunched the numbers on a couple venues before deciding on one. The cheapest venue that was in the best location ended up wanting us to be packed up and out by 12 a.m. (way too early!) and didn't have a sound system for us to plug into. We decided early on to save on the price of a DJ by creating an awesome playlist for the night and simply plugging an ipod into a sound system. We assumed that halls would have such a thing already set up.

The venue we chose is a local curling club that was built within the past five years so it's totally new and up-to-date. The room is very nice looking, has a big bar with two bartenders for the night, room for 200 guests, tables and chairs set up, a sound system to plug in to and we can party until 2 a.m.! We're thrilled.

Pick a Theme

A theme makes it much easier to pull everything together. Popular party themes include Hawaiian/Beach Party, Carnival/Circus, 80s/neon, etc. etc.

We are going with a 90s theme as per my event planning bridesmaid's suggestion. We grew up in the 90s so it's the perfect decade to celebrate. Once we started throwing ideas around there were endless game and decorating ideas to go with it. Other themes seemed tired and over-done but this one spoke to us.


Games are run by the bridal party. They should be fun and cheap enough for people to want to play. I've been to a country J&J where we did minnow racing and log chopping. For our 90s theme we're thinking:

  • Beanie Baby Toss
  • Pogs Tournament
  • Battleship Station
  • MASH
  • Kareoke 
  • Board Games

We will also do the usual games like toonie toss and goldfish insurance. 


Food should be free for guests. We are going to serve something easy and affordable like pizza! The rest of the food will tie into our theme:

  •  90s Candy Station: baby pops, rockets, popeyes....
  • Cupcakes decorated like a 90s show like Pokemon
  • Crazy Straws for drinks
  • Soup Nazi soup station (I love Seinfeld!)

This is what we've planned so far. We still have two months to do the final planning. Do you have any awesome 90s themed ideas? Comment or tweet me I'd love to hear them! 

No comments:

Post a Comment