(Closed) How to plan a tented reception?

posted 7 years ago in San Francisco Bay Area
Post # 3
Member
620 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

Maybe you could call public parks, gardens, fair grounds, camp grounds, wherever it is that carnivals set up when/if they come to your area. Ask them if you can rent out space and set up a tent on it. Most weddings that I have seen in tents have buffets so the caterer will just bring you the food from their kitchen and won’t need access to cooking facilities at your venue. There may be some caterers who will bring plated meals cooked from their own facilities but that seems a bit more difficult. There are some hotels that set up wedding tents on their property and do the catering for you in the hotel. You should call tent rental places because they will know where most people have tents set up in your area. You would also need to call caterers and ask what kind of requirements they have. 

Post # 5
Member
41 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2010

Congrats on the big day! Working outdoors can be tricky. Depending on what county you’re in, you may need to get permits and such to tent outdoors.

Through my job, I’ve organized several outdoor events, and my first though in reading your post is that you should check with local venues about their policies. Try gardens, historical mansions with large outdoor space, wineries, maybe some farms down near Half Moon Bay, etc. Also, talk with some potential caterers about what their requests would be based on your ideal reception– what are their “needs” and what are “wants.” Most caterers will ask for some kind of basic kitchen facilities (fridge, maybe a freezer, oven, prep area, sink); even those buffet stations are prepped and heated onsite before the meal. I know of a caterer that’s grilled on-site before, but that’s fairly rare.

Then maybe decide on if you’re going to have a day-of coordinator or a longer-term coordinator (either through a caterer or a separate person)–maybe that person can help you navigate through all of the tenting/permitting/catering issues!

Good luck!

 

 

Post # 7
Member
41 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2010

@tbiytc: I haven’t heard of any lobster bakes here, but I’d love to put you in touch with my caterer, Jennifer. Perhaps she has? http://jenniferlunch.com

 

-Becca

Post # 8
Member
130 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2005

The Oceano Hotel in Half Moon Bay has a tented area for receptions.  Never heard of them doing a lobster bake for a reception, but Sam’s Chowder house is just down the street and you could probably do something fun like that for the rehearsal dinner.  Good luck!

Post # 9
Member
194 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

We had a tented reception and the caterer came to us, they have lots of equipment and are usually able to accomodate anything as long as you can provide them electricity.

I’m not from your area so I have no suggestions for locations.

There is a lot more to think about when you go this route. You typically will need to rent tables/chairs as your “venue” probably won’t have them. We had to rent bathrooms- but that may not be an issue for you depending on where you have it.

It is so worth any extra work/details you need to be on top of! Good luck!

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