Elegant, exclusive birthday lunch for 12: est. $1,200. Catered, elegant, exclusive birthday lunch for 12 at a hip, downtown space: est. $12,000. Catered, elegant, exclusive birthday lunch for 12 at a hip downtown space on the event planner’s actual birthday, 12/12/12: Priceless.
When veteran event planner Bonnie Siegel’s birthday fell on 12/12/12, having a party to commemorate the historic date was a no-brainer. Indeed, the date itself presented myriad theme options (a dozen roses, the 12 tribes, 12 days of Christmas, etc.), but Siegel ultimately landed on a simple, yet iconic image to symbolize her birth: a dozen eggs. “The egg is the beginning of life, and it represents one thing a woman has that a man does not,” says Siegel, founder and president of ASE Group, Overland Park, Kan. Thus, a theme was born.
“Every element—from the initial invitation to the final amenity—reflected back to the egg,” Siegel says. “As a professional event producer and brand marketer, I wanted to be sure the unique messaging was clear from the beginning.”Siegel worked with an outside event designer--Kenny Sherman of Kansas City-based Trapp and Co.--so as not to tip off her staff, who were also invitees.
The theme started with the invitation: A dozen white porcelain eggs in a porcelain egg crate, each egg hand-written with the following 12 words: "It dozen happen but once in a lifetime. Celebrate with me! 12.12.12."
Held at a hip new event space in downtown Kansas City—28 Event Space—the luncheon began promptly at 12:12 and featured a 12-course, kosher meal catered by Lon Lane’s Inspired Occasions—a feat in itself as the off-premise kitchens had to be koshered prior to all food prep. Dishesincluded beet-marinated deviled eggs, spaghetti squash nests with wild mushrooms, and pomegranate-braised short ribs with roasted butternut squash bread pudding.
The arrival area was decorated with a huge straw nest filled with eggs, floral and place cards that assigned the guests to their tables, aptly named after egg preparations such as "Fried," Scrambled" and "Poached."
ASE Group 6400 W. 110th St., Suite 104, Overland Park, KS 66211; 913/339-9333; www.ase-group.com
Photography by Erez Guresh/Eli’s Photography