Bar & Bat Mitzvah Venues

Parent Q&A

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  • I'm looking for a fun place to hold a co-ed bar/bat mitzvah party for kids. I'm not looking for just an empty event venue, but a place with something to do. I know about Playland-Not-At-the-Beach, the Bladium, Plank, etc., but am looking for other ideas, preferably in Oakland/Berkeley. It will be on a Sunday afternoon in November, so it has to be indoors. Probably around 50 kids? Thank you!

    I had my son's Bar Mitzvah party at Rockin' Jump in Dublin. We rented out the facility and also had about 50 kids plus a handful of adults. The kids had a blast, and my son was over the moon. It was expensive, but cheaper than a venue+bar mitzvah-type DJ. Feel free to contact me directly if you want more info. Here is a link  to my yelp review:…

    You might try Pacific Pinball Musem

  • Hi

    My daughter would like to have a kids-only dance party on the Saturday night following her bat mitzvah.  It won't be a huge number of kids but we want a space that is big enough for a DJ, for them to dance and for them have a food table. She wants a room that already has lights and other decorations or where we could bring them.  We will have out-of-town guests, though not very many, so the ideal place would have a small room nearby where the grown-ups can have tea and dessert without being blasted by the DJ.  We live in Berkeley and can't go too far away.

    Thanks so much!

    The Berkeley City Club has multiple rooms. The ballroom with the adjacent patio could be a good option.

    Check the El Cerrito Recreation Department facility rentals, either the Community Center on Moeser or Arlington Park. Also check the Kensington Community Center and Live Oak Park.

    This may be too far away. We were married in the Old C&H workers clubhouse/Lanai in Crockett. It is pretty large, has a stage, a fire place,  and has a kitchen/food prep room, and smaller is large enough to serve the senior center community dinners in. It may also be too big. It was a great place for out wedding.

    JCC is a lovely venue. You can rent the big hall and the courtyard.  Or, the Albany Community Center.

    Hi--I office at the First Congregational Church of Oakland.

    Their booking info is here:

    They have a large fellowship hall, "Reidenbach Hall" that is good for dancing and rooms off the hall so you can have your parent space.

    Parking is good as well.

    Hope this helps. 


    I suggest looking at Berkeley Yacht Club, which is located in Berkeley Marina.

    The Berkeley Fellowship of UU has event space for rent.

    Central Stage at Richmond Annex would be a good place:

    Address: 5221 Central Ave, Richmond, CA 94804

    Tel: 510-823-5990

  • Place for Bat Mitzvah Party

    Sep 5, 2016

    I am looking for a place to have a party for my daughter that will be fun for the kids and where we can hire our own caterer to satisfy the foodies (some adults) in the group. We expect about 100 people probably evenly divided between kids and adults. We will hire a dj so there must be room for dancing.  I did have a similar party for by son five years ago but it seems many of the locations are no longer available for kids events. 

    Sequoyah country club is nice.  

    The Snow Building just outside the Oakland Zoo could be a good option. Pretty affordable and you can bring in your own caterer. You would have to bring in entertainment, but it has a great view, tables and chairs and was a flexible space.

    Try the Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley.  Meets all your needs and has a great view of the SF Bay as well.  Info here:

    Mazel tov!

    Maybe the UC Botanical Garden would work.

    My son had his bar mitzvah celebration at Rockin' Jump in Dublin, and it was a blast. It was a little different from yours - about 60+ kids and maybe 20 adults. We rented out the entire place and hired an outside caterer and balloon decorator. They supply the DJ. I was a little hesitant about having an unconventional party like that, but I'm glad we did. My son was absolutely thrilled with it, and all the kids seemed to be having a great time. I learned a few things along the way, so if you think you are interested, feel free to contact me.

    We had our daughter's bat mitzvah party at Warehouse 416 in Oakland in June and it worked great. They are open to any caterer. It's very casual and fun and was great for a DJ. We had about 90 people, half kids and half adults. There is also a separate room for anyone who wants to be somewhere a little quieter. They have a fair number of bar/bat mitzvahs there.

      We used the Northbrae Community Church.  They are unbelievable cheap for a religious event which includes a bar/bat mitzvah party.  They have a kitchen and parking.  Its in Berkeley  on the Alameda near Solano.   Its a nice space and we had a DJ also.   

    have you checked northbrae community church in berkeley? i know it sounds odd to have the party at a church, but we just booked our second daughter's bat mitzvah and party there. the first one was a great success. the fee is reasonable, there's a full kitchen that's well stocked with pots/pans/serving pieces, and they can easily accommodate your size group. (we hired a mexican restaurant for the catering and they set up a stand right outside the hall.) i know they book up well in advance, and have lots of bar/bat mitzvah's there. mazel tov!

    We had a wonderful experience at Easton Hall at UC Divinity School.

BAT MITZVAH - HELP! (Apr 26, 2021)

1) Northbrae Community Church (non-denominational) - both our girls were Bat Mitavah'd there and it worked out great with the chapel and hall. We had a taco setup for one and pizza for the other, both in the parking lot between the chapel and hall. 

2) I sadly can't remember the name of the guy we hired.

3)   Simply the best.

4) Enlisted a talented friend with a tripod and gave him a generous gift card when he refused money.


Mazel Tov!

BAT MITZVAH - HELP! (Apr 26, 2021)

Demon & Doyle dj hundreds of B’nai Mitzvah every year. Did both of my kids

  • berkeley tennis club
  • oakland & Berkeley state parks have several structures they rent out for events
  • veterans building (?) on mt Diablo blvd Lafayette 

Archived Q&A and Reviews


Place for a Bar Mitzvah party close to Berkeley?

Oct 2015

Any good ideas for a Bar Mitzvah Party in June? I'm looking in Berkeley or close to Berkeley. Ruth

Look at the Auditorium at the International House, just at the south-east corner of campus. It is a beautiful space. (Not an easy process) ......been there twice! Good Luck!

My friend's daughter had her Bar Mitzvah party at the JCC on Walnut Street. It was very convenient, being just two blocks away from Temple Beth El, and the caterer she hired (from Oakland) did a good job with the food. You can have the tables set up in any configuration you like. (It may not be as fancy as I-House, but it is probably cheaper, and parking on Walnut -- between Rose and Vine -- is many times easier than on Gayley Road!) ~ another option to consider

Casual Restaurant for Bar Mitzvah

Oct 2015

Hi, I am planning an evening bar mitzvah for my son at the end of April. Because it will be in the springtime with El Nino coming, we want an indoor space that can fit 125 people. Our ideal is a casual restaurant (like Picante or Café Leila) that we can rent out for the evening for the ceremony, dinner, and dancing. Or can you think of a large breakfast/lunch venue in the east bay, ideally Berkeley, Oakland, El Cerrito or Richmond that we can rent at night? We have thought about community centers and prefer to avoid needing to rent tables, linens, silverware, glasses, etc. Thanks in advance for your help. Debbie

Cafe Soleil in El Sobrante has a large banquet facility next door to their restaurant, they have great food and Jennifer is awesome to work with. La Strada in El Sobrante also has a banquet hall Salute in the Richmond Marina Hs Lordships in the Berkeley Marina Also, it's not a restaurant, but it has full service event catering - Rockerfeller Lodge in San Pablo is really nice. Kerri

Try this place. It only takes about 10- 15 minutes from central Berkeley. Its not a restaurant but a fairly inexpensive event venue with everything on site. Its an old Rockefeller family hunting lodge so the grounds are a surprise find. They can handle Bar Mitzvahs and have had many. Had my son's wedding there. experienced event planner

Bat Mitzvah in Israel

Feb 2012

My twins will have their B'nai Mitzvah in two years. I'd really like to do this in Israel. Is anyone willing to share their experiences? We belong to a synagogue and our elder daughter did the traditional route. But I'd like to do Israel this time because it will be a good opportunity for the five of us to go and see the country together before the eldest leaves for college. Also our parents are still healthy enough to come and with a few years' notice, five or so of our family friends will be able to save for the trip and join us. So how exactly do we do this? We're talking about 30 people. Do we book a tour, encourage our friends and family to do the whole tour and make this one stop? Do we go to Jerusalem a few days early and adjust to the time then make this the first stop on a custom tour? Do we find a restaurant to host all for lunch or dinner after the ceremony? If so, how? Many thanks for any words of wisdom you may have for us. Berkeley MOT

To the person seeking to hold their daughters' B'nai Mitzvah in Israel in a couple years, I would like to highly recommend you contact Joel Abramson. He is a Bay Area native who now lives in Israel (made Aliyah several years ago with his family) and is truly gifted when it comes to putting together all aspects of this important and meaningful ritual. You may have heard of him (he's won numerous awards in ''J'' magazine.) Joel was involved in my daughter's Bat Mitzvah here in the Bay Area, before moving to Israel, and was an invaluable resource. Many guests told us afterwards that it was the best Bat Mitzvah they ever attended! I know he can handle all aspects and questions you raise about planning and carrying out a very wonderful celebration in Israel, because that is what he now specializes in. Not only can he organize great tours, he can even officiate the ceremony, if you like. Best of all, he is a wonderful musician and will make the experience truly moving and magical. (I had the fortune of witnessing him at a wedding in Israel... truly magical!) His business is known as, Joel Abramson Israel Connection-''the Bay Area Connection to Israel.'' His website is Good luck with this exciting event! Naomi

Where to have kids only party for Bat Mitzvah?

Dec 2010

I'd like to find an indoor location for a mostly kids party after my daughter's Bat Mitzvah. I'd like a place where I can use a caterer so I need a kitchen; I need a dance floor and space for dining and I'd love it if the location was interesting or unusual in some way. I wonder if you could suggest someplace in Berkeley, Oakland or Orinda/Lafayette. Thanks in advance.

The UC Botanical Garden is a great place for party. They have an amazingly diverse collection of plants from around the world. It is a very special place. anon

Bat Mitzvah Venue- Inexpensive

June 2010

Our daughter is having an afternoon Bar Mitzvah and we are looking for an inexpensive venue to host a buffet dinner and dance party. We would like to serve the adults beer and wine and the venues at Parks and Rec (Leona, Sequoia Lodge, etc.) do not allow alcohol for youth events. Any ideas greatly appreciated, and advice on how to go low budget in general would also be helpful! saving for college

Mazel tov to you and your daughter. First the obvious question, you can't have the party at your synagogue? If you need transition time just let guests go home (or to their hotel) for a nap and then return.

You could look into the Hillel building on Bancroft in Berkeley. I've been to bat mitzvah parties there. They have a kitchen for the caterer - it's a kosher kitchen so just be aware of that. And they have a great space for dancing.

There is a cafe, Z Cafe, across the street from Temple Sinai in Oakland and I've been to events there. They have a huge space that used to be a car dealership. They may have to provide the food for you to use the space.

Otherwise I would say, ask your DJ or band where they've performed. A lot of the synagogues have someone who will walk you thru all this. Or if you have an independent clergy person, they should also have knowledge of where they've participated in celebrations.

Have a great time! Dawn

Good place in Berkeley for evening Bat Mitzvah

Oct 2006

Looking for a recommedation for a good place for Bat Mitzvah evening party around Berkeley. Also for fun ideas, DJ's. Please, share your experience. Thank you. Izabella

Hi, one of our staff members has this to say about LHS as a site for his son's Bar Mitzvah: I did my son's Bar Mitzvah this past September at Lawrence Hall of Science I work at LHS, so I'm a little biased, but it was a fabulous location for a number of reasons. The special events staff are very helpful and flexible. There are several different large spaces, indoors and outdoors that can be used for different parts of the event. The views are incredible and the indoor spaces are both elegant and fun (among the exhibits). Several guests commented to us how much they loved the location, and that despite it being a science center, it has a beautiful, dignified, even awe inspiring feel to it. The challenge is, it is only available for special events when the museum is closed--after 5pm seven days a week, so it is only practical for an evening event. We used a somewhat untraditional format on a Friday night: we did the kiddush outdoors overlooking the entire Bay Area, came inside to a gallery for the Bar Mitzvah ceremony, then moved into the lobby for dinner--so we did the entire event in one place on a Friday evening, but one could do the ceremony in a synagogue or other location on Saturday morning, then have the dinner and party at LHS on Saturday evening Linda

Afternoon venue in Oakland

Jan 2006

We're starting to plan my son's Bar mitzvah for the end of March 2007. We're thinking an afternoon party. Any ideas for venue? I will have relatives from New York. Looking for good places to stay. We live in Oakland hills.

Have you considered Lake Merritt United Methodist Church in Oakland for an afternoon party? Right on Lake Merritt, near the Kaiser Convention Center, the social hall can acommodate up to 200 guests seated. A gated courtyard with a play area is adjacent, and makes a wonderful space if young children will be in attendance. The facility is available for group or individual rentals including parties, banquets, wedding receptions, etc. An open and welcoming kind of place to people from all backgrounds. Check out the website: The main restriction is no alcohol is allowed. If that's not an issue for you, then I suggest you check it out. B Avalon

Party room for fifty 13 year olds

Feb 2005

I am looking for a room to rent to have my son's bar mitzvah party for his friends. It can be rustic as it is for the kids only, not for the adults, and we want to be able to provide the DJ and the food. One of the problems is that the event is May 14th, and we are cutting it close to find a place. It can be anywhere from north Oakland up to El Cerrito. Thanks for any suggestions.

It's been a while since we did the Bar/Bat Mitzvah circuit, but my daughters had their parties at the El Cerrito Community Center, and went to parties similar to what you are planning at the Kensington Youth Hut, Albany Community Center, Berkeley Yacht Club, and Arlington Park Clubhouse in El Cerrito. Judy

The Sportsman Lodge in Pinole, near Appian Way is a fabulous place for a kids' party. It is small enough to be intimate. It overlooks the bay from its perch close to the shoreline. This fabulous view of the bay might be appreciated more by the chaperones than the 13 year olds. The room is comfortable, casual, and has parking! Been there

Try They have tons of listings. It is hard to find a place where you can bring in your own food, but the guide will give all the specifics. Good luck.

Try the Kensington Youth Hut, across from the Kensington Library. anon