Ok so welcome to my first ever Bat Mitzvah blog post! Now shooting Bar & Bat Mitzvahs is nothing new to us. In fact, we’ve photographed many of the course of our career. It just so happens weddings generally dominate our calendar but once and a while we’ll shoot a Mitzvah. When Julie (Emily’s mom) first contacted me back in May of 2010 (no joke) I knew this one was going to be off the hook. One month later Julie “got the date” and it was June 16, 2012. At the time there was no venue yet. In fact, at the time I don’t even know if the construction had begun on the newly renovated Saratoga Springs City Center, which ended up being the venue to house this incredible event. Now, all wonderful events come together with incredible people. Thats why Julie & Mike chose Mansion Catering. Duh! Who wouldn’t? Kevin Sykes, Mark Delos and their team pulled off quite a menu and food experience for Emily’s big day! Then for all the amazing and fun decor was the folks at Fine Affairs. They transformed the City Center and made it just perfect for this event. Also along to capture the day was videographer Lance Wheeler. And last but not least the the entertainment was off the chain! Sandi Zager of Dance Time Entertainment and her crew absolutely crushed it! Seriously these downstate entertainment companies blow my mind with their setups and execution. Brides, you should check them out!

The Koenig’s have been great to us over the years. We shot their wedding back in the day. I shot one of Mike’s milestone birthday bashes. Let me tell you, these people know how to throw a party. Aside from that they’re wonderful people to work with. We look forward to the next Bar Mitzvah! Three years for Sam? So we should have a date by this time next year right? 😉 In all seriousness though, thank you guys so much for everything! We had a blast capturing the day!


We set the morning off at Temple Beth Emeth in Albany. Meet our Bat Mitzvah girl, Emily! So pretty!

Not going to lie, my favorite thing about this temple is the Rabbi. Anyone who knows Rabbi Scott Shpeen knows how great of a guy he his. He’s very punctual as well! I love when he says this (and he says it at every bar & bat mitzvah) “At 10:35am I want you in my office with a full stomach and an empty bladder.” Thats what Rabbi Shpeen is telling Emily here.

The stained glass is so colorful and interesting.

This image will conclude the morning portion of the Bat Mitzvah. Its cool because us photographers get to go home and hit the couch for a few hours before the party begins that evening..

Later that evening in Saratoga Springs at the City Center..

There was a food theme! Yes, please! When you opened your seating card you’d find the nights menu.. I especially loved what they did with the gift table.

This was the adults cocktail hour space. How cool is the kitchen utensil arrangement along with the rosemary. See what they did there? Clever!

Not to be outdone by the very swanky teenager lounge.. Along with the custom pillows!

Loved the entrance way to the cocktail hour… how pretty is her second dress?

and fun! So beautiful, Emily! Props to Alayne Curtis of Make Me Fabulous!

I had to put in a photo of the super cute family!!

Upstairs before you entered the main ballroom was this.. The very clever “to go” containers for the kids favors were a huge hit!

How fun was the space? Loving the TV’s with all things food network!!

Setting off the evening right!

A special moment during the candle lighting ceremony..

Desert? Yes please.. Betties (double decker) Cupcake Truck!

I’ll end with one of my favorites during Coke Pepsi or Pepsi Coke! “We’re not worthy!!” Congrats, Emily!!!!!!!!!!!

Share this story

  1. I LOVE this food theme for a party! I may need to “borrow” this idea for Rob’s birthday! 🙂

  2. Ha! Great! Haven’t seen you guys post one of these before! Looks like QUITE the party (I’ll keep my eye out, not for the next bar mitzvah, but for the wedding in a couple decades) 😉 Hehe. This was great, lots of fun details! Congrats Emily and family!

  3. From sunrise to sunset you did a fabulous job capturing this once in a lifetime moment. the memories will last forever. Mema and Pop-Pop

  4. Amazing!!! You captured the emotion of the morning and the magic of the evening perfectly. Thank you. Gorgeous!!!

  5. Wow. these are great! what a cool setup they had. we’ll have to get you for izzy’s sweet 16 party!