A noted celebrity event planner says this is the key to throwing a good party

Friends of the Highline 6726Sarah JacobsGuests pose in front of a dinosaur topiary at the Summer Party to benefit Friends of the High Line, which van Wyck produced with Workshop.

Bronson van Wyck is the master of helping people have a good time.

Since 1999, he and his mother, Mary Lynn, and sister, Mimi, have been putting their hosting skills to good use, planning events for the most high-end of clients — think superstars like Beyonce, Madonna, and Presidents Obama, Bush, and Clinton — through their event production firm, Van Wyck & Van Wyck.

Earlier this year, the Van Wyck team launched a new company out of their production firm. Called Workshop, the new company focuses on producing similarly high-octane events for brands like Coach, Mercedes-Benz, Hermes, and Range Rover.

But when it comes to the secret ingredient that makes a party fun, van Wyck points to one thing: good, old-fashioned southern hospitality that makes people feel at home.

“I have a sincere appreciation for how generosity and graciousness can make people feel warm,” he said. “We wanted to take the essence of southern culture and make the most fun events for the absolute best clients in the world.”

Goop event bronson van wyckHannah ThomsonGwyneth Paltrow speaks at an event celebrating Goop’s collaboration with Valentino. Van Wyck has also planned a birthday party for Madonna, and fragrance launches with Beyonce and Katy Perry.

Van Wyck grew up on a farm in a remote part of northeastern Arkansas, where he learned how to entertain mostly out of necessity. Since then, he’s grown an understanding that engaging, interactive aesthetics can be the key to connecting to people’s positive emotions. People have more fun if they’re given the chance to participate in activities and share experiences together.

That could mean offering custom flower crowns for every guest, or erecting multiple photo booths where attendees can ham it up with their friends, like at a recent van Wyck-produced event Business Insider attended.

Friends of the Highline 6767Sarah JacobsFriends don flower crowns and snap photos at the Summer Party.

This insight into the connection between aesthetics and positive emotion applies to both the weddings and celebrations he puts on for private clients and the branded events he helps companies throw.

“If we can make someone love something, they will not only buy it, they will also go and tell everyone they know,” van Wyck said. “We’re reaching the next level of emotional engagement, and you get there by having moments where people have fun.”

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