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Courage [the ability to do something that frightens one]

Event: Rock n’ Roll BBQ on the Beach
Objective: Create a 1950’s themed BBQ on the beach
Result: Happy guests and an award winning event



To celebrate 50 years in business, we needed the courage to dream big and create a unique, vibrant theme that would appeal to both adults and children. The client wanted us to create an atmosphere where guests felt as if they were attending a barbecue on the beach in the year 1950 but there were so many restrictions.

We researched what was popular in the 50’s as far as food, activities and entertainment, but soon realized that the event wouldn’t be complete without 1950 antique collector cars. Finding them was not the problem, but getting permission to include them not to mention let strangers pose in them for photos was another thing. We were at a prestigious ocean side event venue and parking a bunch of vehicles on manicured lawns was not allowed. However, we had the courage to stay focused on our vision and handle the hurdles as they arose. Luckily, with our excellent vendor relationships connections, the owners and cars were granted permission to be part of this momentous celebration. Viola! The Rock N Roll Beach BBQ was born.

Guests were treated to a complete 1950’s experience with Antique 1950’s Cars, Rock N’ Roll Band, Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, creative 1950 Crafts & Activities and Old Fashioned Sundaes.

Event Objectives

Objective #1: Design an event that brings both clients & family members together for an afternoon of fun in a theme setting.

Solution – we created an interactive setting that encouraged mingling and reminiscing about the 1950’s.


  • A “Save The Date” Invitation informed guests of the theme, date and encouraged them to dress in 1950’s attire
  • A 45 Record hard copy invitation was later mailed to each guest with more details


  • Bubble gum pink signs with diner font
  • Antique 1950’s cars
  • Black & white checkered dance floor
  • Giant Mylar guitars & jukeboxes, musical notes, 45 records
  • 45 record tablecloths
  • Jukebox balloon weight centrepieces
  • Rock ‘n Roll confetti

Finishing Touches:

  • 1950’s Menu Items – Jell-O, Floats, Sundaes, Cheeseburgers & Fries
  • 1950’s candy – Candy Cigarettes, Bazooka Gum & Boston Baked Beans
  • Female staff in poodle skirts, Rhinestone Sunglasses, red hair scarves
  • Male staff in jeans, white T-Shirts (cigarettes in sleeves), black sunglasses, greased  hair

Objective #2: Incorporate themed activities into the event

Solution – creative activities acted as event souvenirs & were also used in contests

  • Eyeglass Decorating: Colourful jewels & glitter (Elvis, Cat Glasses, Octopus Glasses)
  • Scarf Decorating: Mini Poodles Badges on chiffon scarves
  • Yo-yo Decorating: Personalized Yo-Yos
  • Hula Hoop Contest: See who can last the longest
  • Yo-Yo Contest: Guests exhibited their best Yo-Yo tricks
  • Costume Contest: Prizes for Best Female, Best Male and Best Children’s
  • Interactive Digital Video Booth: A Live Interactive Photo/Video recording booth
  • Guessing Jar: Guess how many Bazooka Bubble Gum

Objective #3: Include theme entertainment that was interactive

Solution – all entertainment was interactive

  • Elvis Presley performed classic Elvis hits and posed with the Antique 1950’s cars
  • Marilyn Monroe sang “Happy Birthday” & posed with guests
  • 1950’s Rock ’n Roll Band assisted in all contests

Because we were not limited by our fears, we had the courage to dream big and design something that had never been done before. This event was outstanding in that it surpassed all of our event objectives and garnered us a national CSEME (Canadian Special Events & Meetings Exposition) award. That was a bonus!

Guests left with 1950’s souvenirs, photos with Marilyn, Elvis and 1950’s Cars, as well as personalized cat eye glasses and chiffon scarves.    

A beautifully packaged box of Nostalgic1950’s Candy was awarded for the best dressed female and male. The hit of the party were the keepsake crafts – decorated Cat Eye Glasses, Yo-Yos & Chiffon Scarves!

If you have the courage to dream big, anything is possible!

Photos: https://brightideasevents.com/project/rock-n-roll-bbq/

Blog: https://brightideasevents.com/news/bright-ideas-blog/courage-to-dream-big/

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