Mad Hatter's Tea Party to Celebrate Magnet Accreditation

By Rhiannon Croci, RN

As part of honoring the excellence in nursing at UCSF Medical Center, the Chief Nursing Officer, Sheila Antrum, in collaboration with the Department of Nursing, hosted two festive events for UCSF nurses that were not to be missed. The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party was a themed celebration of the distinguished Magnet accreditation at UCSF Medical Center by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). A lunch time tea party was held at Mount Zion during Nurse’s Week and an evening tea party was held a week later in the Millberry Union Gym at Parnassus. All UCSF nurses were invited to wear their best hat and join in the celebration.

The event at Parnassus was well attended by nurses from clinical and non-clinical areas. From floor nurses to managers and directors, the variety of nurses keen to partake in the festivities was impressive. Mark Laret, the CEO of UCSF Medical Center, even made an appearance, not too shy to sport his best haberdashery.

After a quick ID check and sign in for the nursing event, guests were greeted at the door by a convenient coat and bag check. This was a thoughtful touch especially for the nurses coming directly from or going to work with large bags or coats that would hinder their ability to party. The Gym transformed into a beautiful setting including green grass, striking flower arrangements, and comfy, brightly colored furniture and tables to sip tea, truly giving attendees the feeling of being in Wonderland. Neatly dressed tables served up silver trays of finger sandwiches and miniature deserts, including macaroons and cheesecake, while lemonade and hot tea quenched thirsts throughout the event. Entertaining games where nurses could compete with each other to win prizes lined one wall of the event while the DJ kept the energy high and upbeat with his wide-appealing music mix.

Nurses showed off many different types of hats from beautiful, fancy Kentucky Derby style hats to woven pageboy hats to baseball hats.

Sheila Antrum wore a large black, white and red hat that was reminiscent of both the Mad Hatter and the Queen of Hearts.

Sandy Ng, of Nursing Informatics, and Adam Cooper, of Nursing Education, dressed as a pair of White Rabbits, sporting large pocket watches, ears and tails in all.

Although nurses were invited to come wearing their best hat, it wasn’t "off with their heads" if they didn’t bring one. Two hat making stations at the center of the room offered up black felt and plastic hats to be decorated with stickers, glitter, ornaments, paint, and ribbon. This was a popular place during most of the event and ensured everyone joined the spirit of the event.

Alice in Wonderland themed characters entertained guest, with Alice painting colorful and glittering face designs ranging from teapots to dragons on party goers.

The Mad Hatter and the Queen of Hearts worked the floor by posing for pictures and interacting with guests, performing magic tricks and fortune telling. All helped to celebrate by joining Sheila Antrum in awarding Nordstrom gift cards every hour to guests wearing the best hats.

At the rear of the event, attendees appeared to appreciate the photo station the most, as there were groups queuing up throughout the evening. There, nurses were provided a trunk of costumes to pose in for their most outrageous and silly pictures that were then printed instantly onto a souvenir hologram photo card.
To close an overall successful and fun filled party, every nurse left the event with a custom made UCSF Magnet t-shirt to continue to celebrate the accreditation each time it is worn.

Photography by Daniel Grisales, RN