The first words I said when I entered Kinkell Byre at the 2018 Mermaid’s Christmas Ball were “oooh that’s so pretty!” This first impression was in reaction to the Christmas trees wrapped in fairy lights hanging from the ceiling, but I think it’s a good summation of the event as a whole. Lights were canopied above every room, dainty Wonderland themed centrepieces adorned every table, and an elegantly decorated Christmas tree stood tall in the food tent. The décor was gorgeous, making the party truly feel like a “ball.”
However, the stunning décor didn’t all fit the theme of “Through the Looking Glass,” a nod to Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. The long entrance tent was filled with Wonderland inspired posters and art, and there were signs declaring “drink me” and “eat me” in the food tent, but the décor on the whole felt more like a winter wonderland than Alice’s wonderland. It was stunning, but it would’ve been nice to see the theme put into practice on a larger scale, to really make the event feel like Alice’s whimsical world.
That is my only criticism, however, as the ball on the whole was a delight. The music was the perfect mix of Christmas classics and sing-along favourites, the chocolate fountain was delicious and decadent, and, despite my friend, upon seeing my press pass, declaring that I could quote him saying ‘it’s too busy,’ it really wasn’t that crowded. There was plenty of seating and space to stand and chat. Yes, the dance floor was lively in it’s centre, but a busy dance floor is a good thing; it means everyone was having fun, and there was still plenty of space at the sides if your dance moves required a little more breathing room.
The event was elegant and sophisticated, and I ended the night completely satisfied. I could barely even feel the ache in my feet because I was enjoying myself so much there was no room for pain. (Seriously, whoever thought heels were a good idea for dancing?) And, for better or worse, the ball has officially rung in Christmastime. So, if you see a girl walking down the street in a Christmas jumper, singing “Deck the Halls,” it’s probably me.
On the whole, the Christmas Ball was a smashing success. Congratulations to this year’s ball convenor, Ed Prendergast and all those who put hours of work into this event. Your hard work was obvious and greatly appreciated. This was my first Christmas Ball, but I’m sure it won’t be my last.