A TGIFriday’s Evia Party: The Ball’s 3rd Birthday

Being one of the kids’ favorite weekend haunts, TGIFriday’s was really at the top of our list of the possible places for the Ball’s 3rd Birthday Thanksgiving. What was a bit tricky though was deciding which TGIFriday’s to go with. Truthfully, we inquired at four TGIFriday’s branches in the south of Manila, and we finally decided to go with TGIFriday’s in Evia.

Here are the reasons why we chose the Evia branch:

(1) I liked the party area. The bar area on the ground floor could be closed off via sliding doors, and was just the right size for our family’s headcount (40 pax). There were also widescreen TVs at the bar area where we could play slideshows or videos. And, since we were at the bar area, they could do a flairtending show for our guests.

(2) It was very senior citizen-friendly. The party area, being on the ground level, was directly accessible from outside the mall and entailed minimal walking from the drop-off.  The restroom was also on the ground floor.

(3) I got the timeslot I wanted. TGIFriday’s party slots are usually 3-6pm. Kaya lang, I wanted the party to be over lunch to give everyone enough time to get ready, enjoy the party, and get enough rest at home for the work week ahead, since we held our party on a Sunday.  We were allowed our requested lunchtime slot (12nn-3pm) provided we reach the minimum consumable amount.

(4) They had the most party inclusions. They had a big generic birthday banner we could use. One other TGIFriday’s branch we inquired at had no birthday banner. It was also fortunate that they had an ongoing promo that we’d get two free balloon pillars if we booked our party with them. PLUS, our party associate said they’d throw in some lootbags with a few treats for the kids since I was only expecting about 8 kids. Yey to freebies!

(5) We wanted to give our family from the north a reason to explore a new mall in the South.  Even if Evia is relatively far from our family from the north of Manila, the new MCX would make for easy travel on a lazy Sunday. Besides, we figured that the new Evia Lifestyle Center, with its simulated indoor sky, high indoor atrium, and airy, laid-back feel would be a worthwhile southern destination!

Now… on to some party photos! (Note: Some images were edited to exclude name)

The Party Area

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Party area was at the bar area on the ground floor. This area had three booths (seating four each), and then they set up three long tables which could seat about 8-10 pax each. 

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This was the original setup when we arrived. They set up the buffet and cake tables to the side, near the entrance. I asked them transfer the birthday banner and the balloon pillars to be accents to the cake table instead.

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This was what it looked life after they did my transfer requests and after I setup the cake table. It’s nicer, right? It made for better photos of the cake-blowing too. 

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We put the loot bags next to the red name letters (from the past birthday of the Ball) on the bar. I’m happy that the red color of the letters fit the TGIFriday’s theme, so I didn’t have to change them.

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In keeping with the dinosaur theme of his invitation, cake and cupcake toppers, I also bought these dinosaur-themed napkins from National Bookstore, which we placed on the tables. More on the reasons behind the Ball’s dinosaur theme here
The Cake Table

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Here’s the cake table we set up. My blog post on the DIY dinosaur-themed cake and cupcake toppers here.
The Party Food

We had the following menu for the lunch buffet: Shanghai Chicken Salad, Sesame Jack Daniel’s Chicken Bites, Filipino Pork Liempo, Fish and Chips, Penne Brisket Bolognese, White Steamed Rice, Regular Iced Tea, and Vanilla or Chocolate Ice-cream for dessert. I also had ala carte orders of Ball Park Nachos for the guests to munch on while waiting for everyone to arrive.

We’ve always loved the food at TGIFriday’s, and we were given a food tasting sesh prior to finalizing our choices, so we were sure everyone would have a happy lunch!  Also, we opted to just include the kids in the adult menu headcount, and we didn’t get kiddie meals anymore. We knew the kids would also fancy most of the food choices.  And really, almost everyone had second and third helpings at the buffet, and there was still lots to take home! I’ll say it again: yey for the yummy TGIFriday’s food!

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Lunch buffet. This photo is making me hungry!
The Program

As with all our intimate family celebrations, the running around and playful antics of the kids (and some of the adults too!) are more than enough to keep everyone busy! Another occasion for happy chaos! (Can I copyright this term already?!)

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My son, the Ball, the birthday celebrant! Ang pilyo talaga ng mukha!

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The Ball watching over his cake and cupcakes while the girls play. Ball: Ate, don’t get any yet!

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Cake blowing. One of his cutie patootie cousins wanted to blow the candle too!
But!! Because this is a TGIFriday’s party, the bartenders put on a special Flairtending Show! I think the adults enjoyed this more than the kids did!

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The bartenders at TGIFriday’s Evia doing their thing!

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Whoohoo tumahimik lahat to watch! Galing!

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Hindi din halatang enjoy na enjoy kami, ano? Hehe. Even the ones eating outside the party area stood up and peered in from outside to watch!

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Oh, and they even prepared drinks on the house! They asked me if for kids or adults ba ang drinks.. I said for the kids nalang, so they didn’t add liquor. I think the Ninongs and Titos were disappointed, hehe. Next time nlang noh, magd-drive pa kayo!

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Colorful drinks for the kids!
The Giveaways

Since I didn’t get the kiddie packages, I didn’t automatically get the kiddie party inclusions. But our TGIFriday’s party associate said that since I only had a handful of kids, she’d include generic lootbags with some simple treats. That’s great service right there!

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Contents of the lootbag. Dami rin, right? The kids were happy!

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The Princess enjoying some of her party loots before going home!
So except for the faulty sound system (which they said they were really requesting an upgrade for), I’m definitely giving a thumbs-up for this party. Thank you, TGIFriday’s Evia! The combination of the yummy food, friendly service and the warm company of family and close friends truly made the Ball’s birthday an awesome celebration to remember!

 

 

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