Born to Party

As a child I wrote and directed plays in my family’s walled-in back porch and my friend’s playroom. We had a baby grand piano, which was positioned in the living room in front of a picture window, where I sat up straight as if on the stage at Carnegie Hall and practiced to the smell of Mom baking cookies in the adjoining kitchen.

When I recognized that my playing left a lot to be desired, I tried my hand, also unsuccessfully, at composing a score for one of my plays. Of all my childhood endeavors, my most successful efforts were lemonade stands on the main street (we lived at the bottom of a cul-de-sac) and circus-style shows in the backyard. Both of which involved the exchange of money for something I invented.

I had an office in my Dad’s greenhouse and a calendar listing appointments. My favorite book was Henry Reed Incorporated, about an entrepreneurial boy in eighth grade, who among other endeavors, raised rabbits. Although he was much older, even older than my brother who was four years my senior, I admired Henry Reed and fantasized about meeting him and becoming business partners.

In high school I sang in the school and church choirs, again not a real star, and I played a few roles on stage, which felt quite uncomfortable and I hated all the waiting while other people practiced their lines. The role I fell into more often than not was that of director or producer. I had spent so many hours alongside my Mom as she organized and prepared for events, that, while others shied away from those types of responsibilities, being in charge came second nature to me.

Since 1980, I have designed and produced events professionally, turning fragmented ideas into noteworthy events. I work directly with clients to create strategically driven special events, many of which have won international awards.

I am a Certified Special Event Professional (CSEP). When I received my certification in 2001, I was #109 in the world. Now, in 2019, there are 400 CSEPs and I’m proud to say that for the past five years I have been a member of the CSEP Certification Committee for the International Live Events Association.

Here’s a bullet list of my achievements that someone might read aloud when introducing me prior to a presentation.

  • Recognized as a leader in creative solutions, innovative design and results oriented event management.
  • Projects have been showcased in Special Event Magazine
  • Industry awards on a local, statewide and international basis
  • Active participant in community and professional organizations
  • Writes feature articles for California Meetings + Events Magazine
  • Author of four books on events including a textbook on event production
  • Teaches in the Meeting & Event Planning Certificate program at California State University Sacramento, Continuing Education

Welcome to my world of designing and producing special events. In these pages, I’m providing valuable essential information, along with helpful tips, tricks, and industry secrets – all written in simple language you can understand. You’ll discover how to identify your own unique niche and how to be the best event planner you can be.

Come along, share my vision, enjoy the ride.

Ingrid E. Lundquist, CSEP