My cup of tea

What comes to mind when you see the words “Spring Sing at Harding?”

If you’re reading this and aren’t connected with Harding, you probably have no idea what I’m talking about. But if you are part of the Harding family, you’re most likely familiar with this production that completely controls the spring calendar each year. I could talk about event planning for the production itself and write a whole book, but the purpose of this blog is different.

Part of the “Spring Sing experience” is the host of events happening across campus all weekend long.  For my social club, part of Spring Sing weekend every year is a senior tea. Saturday morning, the club comes together to honor the seniors and their moms. Each year, a group of lucky sophomores get to plan the event; two years ago, one of those lucky girls was me.

I was on a team of four. We had three months to plan and 25 seniors (and their mothers) to please.

Step one: the budget. We were told to figure out our own budget, so we did some searching and came up with an estimate for food, decorations, gifts, venue, and so on. The task then turned to keeping within the boundaries of said budget.

Step two: the moms. It is customary for the moms or mother figures to write letters to their daughters to be read at the tea. What no one tells you is how difficult it is to get in touch with their 25 varying schedules, ask for a summarization of their daughter’s childhood, and get them to narrow down the daughter’s childhood into 12 pictures. Two months and countless emails later, we had enough material to create a slideshow video.

Step three: the setup. The venue was the easy part. A three-hour trip to Hobby Lobby covered the decorations. Etsy covered the gifts. And Sam’s Club covered the food and flowers.

Before we knew it, it was show time. After months of planning, our event had arrived. And I am happy to report that it went off without a hitch! 150 people, 12 gallons of tea, and lots of tears later, we took out the last bag of trash and celebrated a job well done. We even came in $50 under budget.

Event planning is not for the faint of heart, and we had our share of mini crisis moments, but I’m here to say that with a little determination and organization, we turned our event vision into a reality. I’m now less than two weeks away from attending my own senior tea, and thanks to our plans two years ago (which we passed along to the next willing sophomores), I am confident it will be just marvelous.

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