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So Cool It's Hot

THE ICY CHILL of a Rocky Mountain winter mixed with the sizzling heat of a tropical summer at a bat mitzvah designed around the honoree's love of winter and summer.

The event, produced by Denver-based event planner Faye Gardenswartz, was held inside a cavernous Denver in-line skating rink and featured two distinct areas-winter, where cocktails were served, and summer, where dinner and dancing took place. To transform the large space into the two themed areas, Gardenswartz assembled an event crew that included Atmosphere Inc., a Denver event design firm, and Fastlane Productions, a Denver-based lighting and technical production company.

The transformation began 48 hours before the event, with a 25-person crew working round the clock. Pipe and drape-white in the winter area and black in the summer area-separated the two rooms.

"Winter" featured an abstract canopy of white chiffon fabric and white Mylar hanging from the existing truss ceiling, an ice sculpture of an Alpine scene and live ice statues positioned on rotating Plexiglas pedestals. The room was washed in blue light with snowflake-patterned gobos projected onto the walls and floor. Strands of icicle lights hanging from the ceiling added a subtle, wintry sparkle.

After cocktails, guests were escorted to the dining area via an entranceway painted with a sun, welcoming them to summer. There, hot neon colors, salsa music, costumed dancers and tropical flowers contrasted with the previous subdued snowy scene. Multicolored Vari-Lites added to the energy. Abstract palm trees made of neon-painted chrome trussing structures were enhanced with black lights and placed around the room's perimeter. Dining tables were covered in black spandex with a hologram Mylar overlay. Tall, lighted, tropical floral centerpieces accented with votives and neon-hued SculptChair chair covers completed the table tableaux. Overhead, a myriad of colorful twinkle lights were draped across the ceiling trussing, creating a sunburst effect. Additionally, assorted Vari-Lites and Cyber Lights provided a continuous kinetic light show over head and on the floor.

So that guests would leave with warm memories and cool smiles, each attendee was given a goodie bag filled with items reflective of the four seasons-mittens (winter), an umbrella (spring), sunglasses (summer) and a chocolate turkey (fall).-S.C.

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