Just among friends
Wednesday, March 19, 2014 1:00 AM
"Fifty and Fabulous" was the theme to Pat Thomasson's 50th birthday party held in The Warehouse at Beacon on March 1. The party turned into more than just a celebration of her birthday because on Thursday, Feb. 27 was named the 2014 Mississippi Business Woman of The Year by the Mississippi Business Journal.
The party took over a month to plan. Pat was allowed to look over the guest list but she was not allowed to know who would attend. Some things just need to be a surprise. There were 150 invitations given, with 108 in attendance that night. The turnout for the celebration was all we could have hoped for, organizers said.
Guests were instructed to RSVP to Pat's assistant Roxanna. Upon confirming their attendance they were told that instead of bringing gifts, to enter the party each guest had to "Bring a Bra!" Everyone would laugh when they were told the entrance procedure!
Many thought it was some type of joke to be played on Pat. Actually the truth of the matter was, Pat is a breast cancer survivor. Being nine years cancer free was yet another reason to celebrate. The guests were told for each 'used' bra there would be $1 donated to breast cancer research and for each 'new' bra $1 would be donated and the new bras would be given to a local shelter for battered women. Everyone brought a "gift" and some brought extras.
It made for a hilarious and fun filled beginning to the night's events.
The guest list included people from all over Mississippi and adjoining states including, Louisiana, Alabama and Georgia.
The night before the party, a group met at the location to start decorating. The theme was hot pink, one of Pat's favorite colors, and zebra stripes. It was all about celebrating fun. Seating for 120 was brought into the warehouse. Roxanna McCarty, Leanna Lewis, Tena Reynolds, Brandon McCarty, Bryan Snow, Helen Thomasson, Pat's mother; and Linda Ruddy, a friend from Atlanta, Ga., spent hours hand-making over 100 paper flowers to decorate the building.
There were balloons, tea lights, and flowers all over the room. There was a special display case at the front with Pat's new award. There were posters on every wall available of different people and events in Pat's life from over the past 50 years: from a treasured baby picture over the cake table, a life size poster of Pat's mother Helen and her late father Hugh Thomasson holding hands and laughing, to Ole Miss football players and a giant collage of pictures from a zip-line trip through the forest she took last year. Everywhere you looked was a celebration of what Pat loves the most. Each table had its own lighted centerpiece as well as containers of chocolate covered peanuts from Hubb's Peanut Company.
There was a variety of chicken wraps catered by Bumper's Drive Inn. There were vegetable trays, Hawaiian meatballs, bacon wrapped sausages, and homemade chicken salad sandwiches.When It Really Matters - Custom Edible Art by Natali made cupcakes as well as the beautiful and delicious three tier birthday cake! No one left hungry from the party.
The band was essential to the party. It took weeks to make the decision. Tommy Lusk with Crescent Moon Entertainment in Nashville, Tenn. worked closely with Pat to make sure the musicians were exactly what she wanted. The final decision was made to use 'After Dark' a Motown/Funk band out of Memphis, Tenn. They were a complete hit. Playing classic Motown, pop, disco and rock they kept the dance floor moving all night. There were "dance offs" as well as line dancing. The saxophone player serenaded tables with his soulful sound as they took requests from the crowd. A special Happy Birthday song was played for Pat at midnight, marking the actual day of her birthday which is March 2.
Susan Webb had an interesting week, helping her daughter, Melanie Coggins, prepare for granddaughter Caprila's ninth birthday party.
It all started, Susan said, on Saturday, March 8 when Melanie called and asked Susan to put together a poster and gift bags for the party.
"It was for a Rainbow Party," she said. "She [Melanie] got the plans from Pinterest."
Susan first created a huge rainbow poster made of multicolored crape and tissue paper.
"It took me four night of staying up to 2 a..m. to complete," she said. "I could only get red and yellow crape paper so I had to cut, strip and bunch up tissue paper to make the rest."
Susan also made treat bags for the guests. They had little pots filled with gold, chocolate coins surrounded by rainbow mini-marshmallows and rainbow twizzlers.
Susan worked until late Wednesday.
On Thursday they held the party at Pump It Up in Jackson.
According to Susan, Caprila loved everything about it. They even had a rainbow cake for the party with different colored layers and topped with skittles.
"She [Caprila] even got her ears pierced and her nails painted in rainbow colors," Susan said. "She even loved the poster and plans to keep it in her room.
"It was a trip."
The Neshoba Central girls fast pitch softball team participated in the Gulf Shores Classic Tournament last week.
"They had a blast," said Amy Martin, the mother of player Meg Martin. They arrived on Saturday, March 8, and left Thursday, March 13.
The girls played eight games as part of the preliminary to the tournament and came out the winners every time.
"They were the number 1 seed," Martin said.
Outside of the tournament the 32-member team spent the week enjoying the sites. They stayed in a three-story, bright yellow house across the street from the beach called "The Lemonade Stand."
Staying with the girls were the three coaches and their spouses.
While there, the girls visited several restaurants, went to the outlet mall, rode go-karts at Adventure Island, played laser tag, went to the movies and the beach.
"They had a great time," Martin said.
The girls also had fun at the house. Martin said with a laugh that there were no problems keeping 32 girls in a single house together for a week.
"They fixed their hair and put on makeup and clothes," she said.
"There were no problems."