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Ideas for Small/Medium Sized Restaurant Wedding Reception

Hi everyone,

I am looking for suggestions for a restaurant or comparable venue to hold a wedding reception next May or June.

Here's what I'm looking for:
1. Space for 80 - 100 guests
2. Relatively inexpensive ($5,000 - $7,000 total cost for food & drink - tell me if this is not reasonable)
3. Something with natural light - lots of windows and/or light from outside would be really great
4. I'd prefer something that has some outdoor space like a terrace
5. A place where I can bring in a DJ for music/dancing

I'm leaning towards a restaurant because it seems to me like it would require less money and/or effort for decorations & set-up compared to some sort of banquet hall.

I'm very flexible on location - anywhere around the twin cities, whether downtown or in the burbs could work well.

Any ideas or suggestions you have would be greatly appreciated!!

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  1. U of M Campus Club has indoor/outdoor type space. You may be able to do it all for that price - here's the link:
    http://www1.umn.edu/cclub/events.html

    1. We had our reception on the deck of the Walker (this is pre-renovation, but I know the deck is still there). Great view, we had live music (more a combo than a proper *band*), etc. I don't know if they do this anymore, or what the catering is like, but we loved it as a venue and the price was not outrageous.

      1. old arizona, south nicollet. private, with pretty patio outside, good dj venue/dancing inside

        1. You Should Totally Check Out the Whitney Bistro In West Bloomington! It holds up to 120 guests. Half of the space is an English Conservatory (Walls and ceiling are all glass), so that would definitely take care of your natural light, and "outdoor space" requirements. There are also giant fireplaces, a waterfall, 3 large crystal chandeliers, onyx stone ceilings, woodwork from the old Whitney Hotel, and a cute bar. Part of the space can be transformed into a dance floor once guests are done eating. Its also connected to a hotel, so your out of town guests could be close by. Most importantly, your entire evening can probably be done at the lower end of your budget!

          Hope that Helps...and Congratulations!

          http://whitneybistro.com

          ps... Go heavy on appetizers. The chef makes some amazingly tasty little bites!

          -----
          Whitney Bistro
          5120 American Blvd West, Bloomington, MN 55437

          3 Replies
          1. re: kopp0108

            Three District Park (Elm Creek, etc) might work. Lots of windows and light ...outdoorsy, etc.

            Kozlaks...has a patio, reasonably priced. Good food. Been around a long time. Supper clubbish.

            Degidios. Not stellar food but extremely reasonably priced. My GF had a wedding there and it was nice. The window/light thing not as much-but affordability is a definite.

            Chateau lamothe - in Burnsville. I haven't actually been here nor do I know the cost, but in helping friends get ideas, I've thrown this one out. Restaurant, decent capacity, etc.

            Arboretum?

            1. re: kopp0108

              Wow, the Whitney Bistro looks really cool!

              On their website, it says you can rent out the conservatory for 75 ppl or the entire restaurant for 125. Do you know if "the entire restaurant" includes the conservatory, or if it's completely separate?

              Thanks for all the other great suggestions! Keep em coming!

              One other thing I forgot to mention - ability to serve hard liquor is a must, so that eliminates places like the park district which I believe don't allow it.

              -----
              Whitney Bistro
              5120 American Blvd West, Bloomington, MN 55437

              1. re: UrbelT

                If you do an entire restaurant buy-out (which can easily be done with your budget), it will include all three areas of the restaurant... the Conservatory, a smaller bistro area, and the bar. There are large glass doors that open up between the areas so they flow together quite nicely. Also, If you have children in your group, I recommend making the bistro room a kid haven. Throw some fun games, coloring books, etc.. in the bistro, and you wont have to worry about a kid crying during a speech.

            2. Was at a reception at Kozlaks Royal Oak this past weekend. It was a great space and seems to have everything you asked for. the food and staff were top notch.