Birthday, Anniversary & Christening Party
Wow, what a party and get together! We had a lot of friends and family from all over. The party was a lot of work, but with help from family and friends, it all came together, and a good time was had by all.
The idea for the party was really a consolation prize for Kitty and me. We had hoped we would already be cruising, and had planned to be in Charleston, South Carolina, for our 40th wedding anniversary. It was in Charleston that Kitty and I were married in 1969.
We were sorry about not being in Charleston, but when we looked at a calendar and realized that my birthday, June 20th, fell on a Saturday, and Kitty's birthday is the 21st the next day, it seemed like the stars were in alignment. Kitty and I decided that our anniversary present and birthday presents to each other would be a blowout party. Because some friends of ours here on the dock had had a christening party, with an official ceremony, we decided to attach a christening of DREAM AWAY to the party schedule. We have owned DREAM AWAY since February of 1992, and changed the name soon after purchase, but we never really got around to an "official" christening ceremony.
Because I was working full time on DREAM AWAY getting her ready for cruising, the party planning fell mostly on Kitty's shoulders, and what a great job she did. Kitty got the christening ceremony from our friends on the dock, and used it as the basis for our ceremony. She got bits and pieces of other ceremonies from the Internet, and put together a really nice ceremony. As luck would have it, we even had a band to play during the party. Trey, a friend on the dock, who also lives aboard a boat, has a band, Gondarva, that was just getting up to speed, and he offered to play at the party at no charge.
What really made the party, and especially the christening ceremony, was the help and participation of all our friends. They really got into the ceremony, and their costumes were outstanding.
We provided a large amount of the food, and some of the drink, but it was also a pot luck party, just to make sure we had plenty for everyone. We sent out the invitations, and hoped the party would be a success. We requested RSVP's, hoping it would be a fairly accurate idea of how many to plan for attending. About a week before the party, we had 110 RSVP's, and most of them showed up. We had purchased 100 name tags, and ran out of the name tags before everyone arrived.
Our portion of the food was catered by Captain Mike Seich from Maritime Sanitation here in Clear Lake Shores, No comments please. Captain Mike had over 100 lbs. of brisket, sausage, beans, and potatoe salad. Of course, no Texas BBQ is complete with out sliced white bread, sliced onions, BBQ sauce, and pickles. We also provided a margarita machine that made both margaritas and virgin strawberry daiquiris. We had a keg of beer available. I was going to do Rum Wookies, but was just too tired when the time came.
The actual ceremony was great. All of the participants were in costume. We had the god of the sea (Poseidon), the god of the wind, (Aeolus), and the goddesses of the north wind (Boreas), west wind (Zephyrus), the east wind (Eurus), and the south wind (Notus). There were also two fairy princesses. Quite a gathering, and all in great costumes. If you would like to read the ceremony we used, the link to it is Christening Ceremony.
We had quite a few wonderful friends and relatives fly in for the party. The Tuesday before the party, good buddy Steve arrived. He was an immense help in getting things set up. On Wednesday, son Stacy and his Tina arrived. Couldn't have done it without them! On Thursday our friend Diana, from Canada, my two nieces (Terri and Lynn, from Tampa), and daughter Judy arrived. On Friday, long-time friends Dale and Karen, and Kitty's "sister', Kathy, arrived. The fun was really beginning.
Now that you have an idea of what was going on, here are the photos, starting with the ceremony rehearsal, and moving to the real ceremony.