The mistress of ceremonies has a big job. She sets the tone for an event and must move the program along on time, with compelling comments and introductions of speakers, auctioneers and activities. She's probably donating her time to your event, so thank her with a thoughtful gift. This should be something she will use, not a plaque or gavel that will get stuffed in a box.
Restaurant Gift Card
A gift idea that will be a big hit with a mistress of ceremonies is a gift card to a local restaurant. Make sure it's from a place suitable for dinner. This can be a national franchise or it can be a local haunt known for its upscale meals. Buy the gift card in an amount that's at least enough for a complete dinner for one, a minimum of $50. Better is a gift card for $100 to $200.
Your mistress of ceremonies is a professional who pays close attention to her appearance. That's why she'll appreciate a gift certificate to a local spa. Make this for specific services, such as a manicure, pedicure and facial, or make it for a general amount, such as $100 to $200. Get the certificate from a chic spa popular with business professionals or from a resort.
The mistress of ceremonies must maintain a professional appearance for your event and others. She'll appreciate a gift card to her favorite clothing store. For this gift, you must ask her in advance where she buys her clothes. You can do this when you engage her for your event. Simply compliment the way she always looks so put together and ask where she shops, then go to the store and buy her a gift card. Talbots, Ann Taylor and Saks Fifth Avenue are good choices if you don't get a chance to ask her, and make sure the gift card is enough to buy something substantial, between $100 and $500.
The most appreciated gift of all may be cash. For an emcee, this is called an honorarium. You can hand her a thank-you envelope filled with green or a check from the organization. Make the amount something substantial, because you are in effect paying the emcee for her talent and services. Anything between $500 and $1,000 is appropriate. The emcee will have to count the gift as income, but she won't mind putting aside the taxes. Note also that some emcees are banned by their companies from accepting cash, such as some TV news anchors, so ask in advance if an honorarium is acceptable.