Nov
07

We hope you and the family can join us for for our 2nd Annual Brunch with Santa. This event was so popular last year that we have opened up two days to get your visit in, December 8th and 9th.

 

 

The event will feature a family style breakfast of assorted breakfast breads, fruit, eggs, pancakes, bacon, juice and coffee. After feasting, Santa will be available for photos and Christmas wish lists.

 

 

Cost to attend the brunch:
$20 per Adult
$10 per Child (3-10)

Free for children 2 and under

RSVP by November 30th as space is limited for each day. To RSVP click here.

 

A 4x6 photo will be printed onsite and digital downloads will be given to the attendees so you can share your holiday moments with loved ones. Here are a few photos from last year...

 

 

 

 



Dec
12

Here are some of our favorite photos from our first annual Breakfast with Santa. Everyone had a great morning and even Santa enjoyed a change of pace with some pancakes instead of cookies.

 

If you did not make it this year we hope you can join us in 2012.We are looking for a good front range charity for this next year that we can represent and bring awareness to. Please let us know if you have any you want to nominate.

 

Special thanks to Greens Point Catering , Booth 66 Photo Booths, and Santa! Your hard work helped to make this event possible.

 

 


Nov
22

Santa is making a special stop at Lionscrest this year to sit down with the kids for pancakes, pictures and present wishes. We hope you and the family can join us for this fun holiday event. Part of the funds raised for the day will go to a local food pantry to help other families that are in need have a brighter holiday season.

 

 

 

Breakfast includes pancakes, bacon, breakfast potatoes, scrambled eggs, and assorted breads with coffee and juice.

 

Receive a 4x6 photo with Santa and a digital file download (so you can make as many prints as you like).We will also have a take home craft for the little ones.

Cost:
$20 per Adult
$12 per Child (4-10, 3 and under are free)

 

A $5 deposit will be required to reserve each spot.
RSVP by Dec 6th. To RSVP click here.


Apr
09

With over 15 years of weddings here at Lionscrest we have seen so many couples think outside of the box and come up with cool and unique ideas on how to personalize their event. Here are some of our favorites. Hopefully they will help you to get the creative juices flowing!

Personalized Favors... The mother of the Bride and her friends have formed a wedding club where they get together when one of their children are getting married and make custom favors, programs, menu cards and more. A great way to get a job done and have some fun too!

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Bar Flair... Help your guests to know what is being offered by creating a customized bar menu for your wedding. Many couple will offer a few specialty drinks instead of a full bar. Have fun with these drink and give them funky names and stories about why you chose to serve them.

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Sweet Tooth... More and more often we are seeing couples offer desserts other than a traditional wedding cake. Many events will offer Chocolate Fountains, Candy Bars (a self service table area where guests can fill a baggy of their favorite candies), mini cakes, pies, donuts and more. Now some couples will partner these items up with cake while other will skip the cake all together. Just depends how much sugar you want!

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Event Branding... Thanks to Martha Stewart we are seeing a real trend towards total Event Branding. Whether it is just a Monogram or it is a full theme couples will run this brand look through out the entire event. From Invitations, programs, lighting, menus, decor and more. It is a great way to put the stamp on your event.

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Not Just Candles... While traditional candle light is great and a classic romantic addition to any event, try adding some unusual lighting. At Lionscrest we recommend our Garden Lanterns, Swagging or Tulle and Lights. Again just another unique touch that will help to create the mood you are looking for.

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Personal Mementos... Ah yes don't forget the classics. Many couples in years past have steered away from the Personal Toasting Flutes, Guestbook and Cake Serving Pieces. Now we are seeing a resurgence of these pieces. You want your event to look great the day of but you also what to have a few key pieces that you can carry with you through your life and look back on to help you remember your special day.


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Remembrance... Along the same line as the items above many couples are shucking the idea of the traditional Unity Candle and going for something a little different. Many couples will offer wishing stones (pictured below), sand ceremony, roses for family members, memory tables for loved ones and so on. Take some time to think of what is important to you and how you can make your ceremony a little bit more personalized.


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Props... No matter the location or time of year it is always fun to have some bridal party props for photos. The Spring wedding below has personalized umbrellas to make the most of their overcast day. You don't have to be cheesy to have some fun. These personalized props make great bridal party favors as well.


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Going to the Dogs... Anyone who keeps up with our blogs knows we are big dog lovers! Don't forget to include Fido in your ceremony. Pets are family members that have such open and honest emotions. You can't beat their honest candor when it comes to those wedding pics.


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Something Old, Something New, Something FUNKY, Something Blue... Many brides love the secret shoe reveal. Perfect bridal on the outside, but underneath lives a fun and funky chic. Fun shoes are a great way to make a statement about yourself and your life. Whether you want super high purple Jimmy Choo stilettos or fun bedazzled Converse tennis shoes have fun and go crazy!

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Photos provided by Elegant Images and Ashley Davis Photography


Mar
30

Over the years we have helped many family celebrate their child's coming of age with a Bar or Bat Mitzvah Party. This religious celebration brings together family and friends, near and far for the ceremony and of course party to follow!

Lionscrest can help families pull together a complete event with food, decor, entertainment and more. Whether you are looking for a formal kosher meal for 50 or a wild dance party for 200 kids, we can help you with all of the details.

Contact us today to schedule a private tour and design consultation.

Photos at Lionscrest courtesy of Elegant Images

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Here are 7 things you need to know about a Mitzvah (by Rabbi Shraga Simmons

Caterer? Photographer? What is the essence of a Bar/Bat Mitzvah? Here are the seven key points you need to know.

(1) Bar Mitzvah Basics

First, let's understand what the words "Bar (or Bat) Mitzvah"actually mean. The phrase translates as "son (daughter) of commandment"-- i.e. the young person becomes responsible to observe thecommandments (mitzvot) of the Torah.

The purpose of the commandments are to keep our lives focused onwhat's truly important: family, community, and a relationship with God.

Although we commonly refer to "having" a Bar Mitzvah, technicallyspeaking, this is impossible. The term "Bar Mitzvah" refers to astatus, in the same way that being a student or parent is a status.

A Jewish boy automatically becomes Bar Mitzvah when he turns 13years old, and a girl at age 12. (In general, girls tend to matureearlier than boys.)

On a deeper level, just as their bodies are growing and changing, sotoo their souls are growing and changing. Kabbalistic tradition saysthat a person's spiritual being has several levels of soul. A new levelof soul (called neshama) comes into awareness at Bar/BatMitzvah time. This is the time when moral awareness and sensitivityfully develops, enabling young people to take responsibility for theiractions.

One's actions after reaching this stage of life are considered moresignificant for another reason: The Talmud explains that a mitzvahperformed because one is commanded, is considered greater than amitzvah performed voluntarily. This is because a person has a naturalaversion to fulfilling an obligation. Overcoming this aversion is asign of maturity, and this is what the Bar/Bat Mitzvah celebrates --reaching the stage of obligation.

(2) Synagogue Event

OnShabbat (and various other days), the Torah -- a scroll containing theFive Books of Moses -- is read publicly. The Torah is divided into 54portions, following an annual cycle, with one portion read each week inthe synagogue.

The weekly portion is further sub-divided into seven sections. AtShabbat morning services, people are called up and honored with sayingthe special blessings before and after the reading of each section.

The Torah is removed from the holy ark, and then carried to the bima, the raised platform from where the Torah is read. While the Torah is being carried, everyone stands out of respect.

Colloquially speaking, when people say, "I had a Bar Mitzvah," itmeans that they had an aliyah to the Torah in synagogue. "Aliyah" meansto "go up" to the bima.

The Torah scroll is meticulously written by hand by a God-fearingscribe. A number of rules ensure that the Torah is written with perfectaccuracy, thus maintaining the unbroken chain of tradition back toMount Sinai.

On the Shabbat following his 13th birthday, the young man is calledup to the Torah. This calculation follows the Jewish calendar. At theconclusion of his final blessing, some synagogues have the custom togood-naturedly pelt the young man with candies.

At this point it is customary for the father to recite the following blessing:

Following this, the bar mitzvah boy reads a portion from thebiblical prophets, called the Haftorah. During a period of persecution2,000 years ago, Jews were forbidden from reading the Torah, so theyinstituted a reading from the prophets that corresponds to the theme ofthat week's Torah portion. The Haftorah is read with a uniquetraditional melody.

Following services, the congregation usually joins in a Kiddush, a small lunch that begins with a blessing over wine.

(3) The Reception

One popular feature of the Bar/Bat Mitzvah celebration is areception. This should ideally be held on the day which the youngman/woman becomes 13/12 years old. If necessary, the celebration may bepostponed somewhat.

There are different practices regarding what is done at a BarMitzvah celebration. It is proper for the young person to relate someTorah thoughts at the celebration -- i.e. the famous Bar Mitzvahspeech. The speech usually contains ideas from the weekly Torahportion, and emphasizes the young person's commitment to Jewish values.

And what about that Titanic-themed party with Hollywood-stylespecial effects? It's important that the festivities should not becomeso ostentatious that the spiritual significance becomes secondary. Thenew adult should appreciate that this is a celebration of maturity andresponsibility, a message which will carry through for the rest oftheir life.

(4) The Gift

Now what about the ubiquitous Bar Mitzvah gift? In the old days, thegift of choice was a fountain pen, then a Walkman, and today an iPod.

Those are just fine but there are much more meaningful gifts for aBar/Bat Mitzvah. Since this event celebrates the young person becomingobligated in the commandments, the most appropriate gift is, naturally,one that gives a deeper understanding of the Jewish heritage andenables one to better perform the mitzvot! (An iPod, s/he can getanytime.)

With that in mind, my favorite gift idea is a tzedakah (charity) box.Every Jew should have a tzedakah box in his home, so he can drop inchange on a regular basis. The money can then be given to support aJewish school or institution -- in your home town or in Israel (everyJews' "home town"). There are beautiful tzedakah boxes made of wood andsilver, and you can see a selection here.

The next obvious gift is a Jewish book. There are many hundreds of titles to choose from, so I've narrowed it down to the Bar/Bat Mitzvah Top 10. Just click on the title to order:

Stone Chumash (published by ArtScroll), an excellent translation of the Five Books of Moses with running commentary on every page
Book of our Heritage by Rabbi Eliyahu Kitov (Feldheim), a beautiful overview of the Jewish holidays
The Bar Mitzvah Treasury, an illustrated collection of customs and inspiring stories (by Rabbi Yonah Weinrib and Rabbi Yaakov Salomon; ArtScroll)
The Thinking Teenagers Guide to Life by Rabbi Akiva Tatz (Targum), gripping essays on forging a path through life
Sand and Stars by Yaffa Ganz (ArtScroll), a two-volume book about Jewish history, written especially for teenagers
Shmooze by Rabbi Nechemia Coopersmith, a fun book that provokes thoughtful discussions on essential Jewish issues
The Long Road to Freedom, by Avner Gold, an exciting historical novel filled with intrigue and insight into Jewish life.
Bible for the Clueless But Curious by Rabbi Nachum Braverman (Leviathan), packed with wisdom on relationships, spirituality and more
Candles in my Window by Beth Firestone, a delightful fiction book about a young girl discovering her Judaism
Triumph – Aish.com's popular book of inspiring true stories of challenge and spiritual growth.

If all else fails, you can always give money. It is a nice idea togive $18 (or some multiple thereof), since the numerical value of 18 inHebrew is "Chai," which means "Life."

(5) Tefillin

Upon reaching age 13, a boy begins the obligation to put on tefillin every day (except Shabbat and holidays).

Tefillin are two square, black leather boxes, which containparchments of Torah verses. Attached to each box are black leatherstraps. One of the boxes is worn on the bicep, and the other is worn onthe front of the head.

Thetwo boxes represent the two ways that we serve God in this world:thought (the head) and action (the arm). The arm-tefillin contains oneparchment in one compartment, whereas the head-tefillin is fourparchments, each in its own separate compartment. This is to signifythat in service of God, the two powers must work congruently: We usethe totality of our mind to gain the full perspective, and then we actwith a singular clarity of purpose.

Inside each tefillin box are parchments containing four Torahsections, which speak about God's unity, the obligation to observe thecommandments, and the responsibility to transmit Judaism to ourdescendants.

If you're really feeling generous, Tefillin is a wonderfulgift for a Bar Mitzvah boy. Owning a pair of Tefillin (and wearingthem!) is an important part of Jewish identity. But since they areexpensive (about $400), not every Bar Mitzvah boy has a pair. To makesure you get kosher Tefillin, see here.

(6) The First Bar Mitzvah

Now here's a Jewish trivia question: Who was the first person to have a Bar Mitzvah?

We could actually suggest three answers:

1) Abraham - The first person to begin observing some of the mitzvotwas "the first Jew," Abraham. However, he was older than age 13 when hestarted, so...

2) Isaac was the first person who was "Jewish" upon reaching age 13.The Torah writes, "And Abraham made a great party on the day" (Genesis21:8), which the Midrash explains was a celebration for Isaac becomingBar Mitzvah.

3) Mount Sinai - Only when the Torah was given at Mount Sinai did Jews became truly obligated to observe the mitzvot. Therefore, the Sinai experience was actually a mass Bar/Bat Mitzvah of the entire Jewish people.

(7) What's Next?

Some have the misconception that Jewish practice is confined to thesynagogue, or to an occasional holiday celebration at home. The truthis that Torah and mitzvot punctuate every moment of our lives: settingstandards for business ethics, proper speech, honoring parents, what weeat, and even how to care for pets!

We refer to these laws as Torat Chaim, literally "instructions for living." Torah is the ultimate "owner's manual" for maximizing our pleasure and potential in life.

Torah is a basis for life's most important questions: How can I livea meaningful life? How can I build successful relationships, dealhonestly in business, and fulfill my personal potential? How can Ireally make a difference in the world?

Torah study emphasizes building a rational basis of belief, toengage one's mind, stimulate the intellect through questioning anddebate, and thereby nourish the soul. It does not endorse a leap offaith, all-or-nothing decisions, or disengagement from the world.

Thegoal of any Jew is not only to study the Torah, but to become a "livingTorah," who embodies the lofty ideals of "love your neighbor," "peaceon earth," "justice for all," "universal education," "all men arecreated equal," "dignity of the individual," and "the preciousness oflife." These concepts all originate from the Torah, and these havedefined the moral makeup of humanity.

In Jewish life, a Bar/Bat Mitzvah does not represent the culminationof one's Jewish education, but rather a stepping-stone to a more matureand profound relationship with Jewish learning.

This is illustrated by the following idea: If even one letter ismissing from a Torah scroll, it is rendered invalid. According totradition, each Jew corresponds to one letter in the Torah. Thisteaches that each and every one of us has an integral role to play inthe future of the Jewish people.

Bar/Bat Mitzvah means to become educated, and to strengthen one'sJewish pride through knowledge and understanding. It means to growJewishly, one step at a time. It means standing up for Israel andrespecting every Jew. It means taking responsibility for the world,using the Torah as our guide, because that is the mission of the Jewishpeople. And most of all, it means to love being Jewish.

Success in achieving these goals is what we wish for the Bar/BatMitzvah, and the beginning of that journey is what we celebrate on thisjoyous occasion.

Mazel tov!