HOW TO PLAN A MILITARY BALL:
1. Determine the Number of Guest
Determining the approximate number of guest is crucial in pinpointing the venue as many establishments have minimums or maximums for usage.
2. Choose a Venue
Choose a venue by reviewing event or banquet menus online by contacting establishments. The venue is your best starting point as this will determine if you will need to contact caterers and decide what decoration to place. Be sure that there is ample space for the seats and tables, and for the dancing. Talk to the banquet manager and ask what extras are included, such as table linens, beverages, centerpieces and music.
3. Establish a Date and Time for the Event
Clear the date detail with the facility manager to ensure that the venue will be available on the date and time you plan the event will be.
4. Choose a Menu for the Ball
Choose the food to be served and how it will be served. Military ball typically uses the sit-down or buffet style dinner.
5. Compute the Expenses Needed for the Ball
Make a list of the expenses: the food, banquet hall rental, entertainment and decorations. Decide the amount of money needed to be raised to be able to pay the expenses for the ball.
6. Establish a Fund Raising Campaign
Coordinate fund raising activities to offset the remaining balance for the Ball’s expenses like bake sale or raffles.
7. Create Tickets
State the dress code, the location, date and time of the event. Be sure to number them so people will not duplicate them.
8. Promote the Ball with Flyers and Announcement
Print flyers with information like event title, ticket cost, venue, date and time of the ball and distribute in mess halls or barracks as well as common areas. Create press releases outlining the event and submit it to local newspaper, radio station, and television station. And include a note about fund raising or donation and state where it will be sent.
9. Be Sure to Account All Cost
Have a list of the all the expenses to determine the amount of money needed to be gathered through fund raising, ticket sales, and donations.
MILITARY BALL IDEAS
Use the Colors
Decorate the tables with the colors of the particular branch of service for which you are hosting the ball. Blue is the official color of the Air Force. Black and gold are the colors of the US Army. The official flag of the US Marine Corps are in scarlet with the Corps’ emblem gray and gold; and, navy blue for the US Navy unit. Table cloths in any of these colors with mirrors in the middle and votive candles make an attractive arrangement.
Military Centerpiece Ideas
Centerpieces should be low so guests who are seated can still talk with one another across the table. Place a mirror on the table, and a fish bowl full of water. Float few votive candles and sprinkle with mylar confetti or rose petals. Be sure that the rose petals match the theme or the color scheme of the party. The mirrors will reflect the flame of the candles. And, they’ll look really nice for black or navy blue tablecloths.
You may use statues of military symbols like bald eagle found in the Air Force insignia; or the anchor in the Navy. Die cast models of Air Force jets, or navy ships or submarines can be used if you’re focusing on those branches in the military.
Put pictures of military members at each table; the pictures should span from childhood to the present. This works a great conversation starter or ice breaker. Also, make a scrapbook for each table; your guest will have loads of fun and laughter talking about the pictures. Ensure that the pictures are laminated to prevent damage. Newspaper clippings and awards can be laminated and displayed, too
The American Flag
Use the American flag freely as your decorations. You can purchase or create place mats or place cards. The flag lends itself well to centerpieces and as decorations on dishes and cakes. Try to find old American flags dating from the beginning of our country ‘til today. And display them as wallscape.