Somewhere Over the Bar Mitzvah

Planning a bar mitzvah is its own rite of passage. We rush around trying to make sure everything is perfect. We have walk-throughs, run-throughs and checklists. We can almost get lost in the details; there are so many of them. Do the yarmulkes perfectly match the turquoise flower arrangements? Does Aunt Sadie need to be picked up from the airport? Does little Sammy need to practice his speech one more time?

Sometimes the best memories come from moments that weren’t planned: Rebecca starts giggling uncontrollably in the middle of her haftarah; 3-year-old Max escapes his parents and rushes the bimah; David forgets his tie and borrows one from the rabbi.

As someone who has attended, led and coordinated hundreds of bar mitzvahs, I have had my fair share of wacky experiences and truly crazy flukes that no one could have foreseen.

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