Gregory, one of boys in our synagogue, recently celebrated his Bar Mitzvah. Since our membership is so small, everyone at the temple was invited. I attended and had a wonderful time. The decorations were wonderful, the food was excellent and everyone had a tremendously good time.
The Gregory loves sports of all kinds The family went all out and made a video invitation. It was Gregory pretending he was a sports all-star being interviewed as the youngest person to ever win Most Valuable Player. Not just in one pro-sport, but all of them! It was hilarious! At the end of the tape, he looked straight into the camera and invited everyone to the party to celebrate.
The banquet room at the temple was decorated sports equipment and posters of famous sports figures hanging on the walls and from the ceiling. White tape was used to make the dance floor look like a basketball court. There was a freestanding backboard and hoop at the edge of the stage, over which hung a banner with trophies on it."Congratulations, Gregory!" was printed in blue and gold letters.
Travel games like pool, pinball and paddle ball were on every table. Adults and kids were playing with whiffle balls, Nerf footballs and inflatable boxing gloves.
Some kids were dancing to modern music played by the DJ. Others were snacking on pretzels, potato chips, nachos or peanuts. There were sodas, iced tea, or water for the kids to drink and beer, or wine for the adults.
Everyone gathered in the temple for the Aliea La Tora. Gregory did a fine job. He messed up once, but the only way anyone could tell was his face turned bright red.
Back in the hall we watched a video. Gregory accepted his Most Valuable Player trophies and gave an acceptance speech, thanking his team mates without whom he would have been unable to save the game in football, basketball, tennis, hockey and lacrosse! Gregory is very funny. He kept a straight face, even though the scene was ludicrous--which actually made it funnier.
As the applause died down everyone could hear the sound of a marching band. It sounded as if it were getting closer. The doors opened and a real marching band entered, playing the "Rocky" theme. They marched straight to the dance floor, performed a routine and then lined up in two rows while MVP of everything, Gregory, jogged down the center wearing a boxing robe! It was wonderful!
Gregory sat at the table with his family and took off his robe. His grandfather performed the Hamotze before soup and salad were served. The children danced and played games like musical chairs and pass the balloon, which involved passing a small balloon from person to person using your chin and neck. The game didn't last long because all of the kids kept laughing and dropping the balloon on the floor. The kids ate hot dogs and pizza while adults were served honey glazed roast chicken or beef. Wine was served for those of us who wanted it.
After dinner Gregory thanked all of us for coming. Thirteen of his friends performed the Candle Lighting ceremony, which had a sports theme. Each candle had an image of a person playing a different sport.
Everyone danced, sang and took pictures until nearly midnight. Gregory's parents said a brief thank you to all the guests and brownies and cupcakes in the shape of basketballs, baseball, and hockey pucks were served.
the partycame to an end when the parents of Gregory's friends came to pick them up. It was well after midnight by then and we were all ready for bed. Each of the kids chose one of the travel games home as a memento of that entertaining night.