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Jan 9, 2012 06:47 PM

Venue for a casual, low-budget wedding party, any neighborhood?

This is my first post, hope I'm not breaking any rules. I'm looking for suggestions for a venue to host the reception party after my wedding. Above all else, we're looking to keep things very casual and simple - in other words, as cheap as possible. Here is some key info:
-Will be held on a weekday afternoon
-Party size: Around 20
-Budget: $1500 or so, but we'd be THRILLED to do it for considerably less.
-Food type: We'd like to avoid Asian and Indian foods. Just about anything else is fine. This includes casual fare like pizza, burgers, and bar grub.
-Location: pretty much anywhere in Manhattan, we have no problems moving around!

We don't need to fully rent out a restaurant, nor do we need a private room. We don't need a full course, either. We just need a place where we can enjoy some tasty bites, a few drinks, and enjoy everyone's company. I would be extremely happy to hear any suggestions you have for an affordable venue. Thank you in advance!

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  1. Maybe Freemans? I know Freemans has private rooms, but if you feel it'll be too expensive to rent out a room, you may see if they can place your party in the second bar area where you can monopolize the space. Given that you are planning this for a weekday afternoon, I think you should be able to do. Call and explain your situation. Good luck!

    Freeman Alley, New York, NY 10002

    6 Replies
    1. re: lulumoolah

      Thank you for the suggestion! After looking through their info it does seem like renting a private room would be just out of our budget range, but you may be right that, given the early hour, we might be able to work something else out with them. I'll contact them and give it a try. Thanks again!

      1. re: grizzlytotoro

        If you're willing to go to Brooklyn, Clover Club might work. It's in the Cobble Hill/Carroll Gardens area on Smith Street, near the F train. Clover Club has a back room which is nice for parties and small events. Surprisingly, Clover Club is open for lunch during the week. Again, given the day and time of your reception, they may be willing to work with you if the price is too high. In this case, it may be better to rent out the space, because it's not like the layout of Freeman's where it's almost two spaces.

        Sorry, I feel like I should able to suggest more, but my memory isn't complying.

        1. re: lulumoolah

          Sorry, but I'm back again. Another suggestion if you are willing to travel is Roberta's in Williamsburg/Bushwick. It's a trek but super close to the L stop at Morgan. Roberta's offers group prices. There is no separate room, but you can see if they can place you in the same area in the back part of the restaurant - it's sort of like Freemans with two areas. I recommend the pizzas.

          1. re: lulumoolah

            This is the last suggestion. Hundred Acres in Soho. They have a garden room type area in the back of the restaurant which should more than accommodate your party.

            Hundred Acres
            38 MacDougal St., New York, NY 10012

            1. re: lulumoolah

              The more suggestions the better! I'll look into all of them, thank you.

              1. re: grizzlytotoro

                Best of luck! I hope one of these works out for your reception. Here's another idea which I'm hearing more and more about - food trucks. In lieu of a restaurant or reception hall, some people are hiring food trucks. From what I've heard the prices are pretty good and you can hire more than one, so your guests can have more options and cuisine choices. The only problem is having a location for the food trucks to park and also having seating for your guests. I'm guessing that your wedding will be soon so it wouldn't be feasible to find an inexpensive outdoor location or park area to hold the reception and park the trucks. Anyway, congratulations and good luck on finding a perfect (and affordable) place for your reception!