Adventures in Wedding Planning: Finding a Caterer

Well ladies (or couples)…the adventures in wedding planning continue. We have a lot of big things done including finding our venue, photographer and even the baker for our cake. Deposit checks flying left and right. Finding the caterer was our most recent adventure and was, yet again, one that proved to be like the other things in trying to plan a wedding in Fairbanks.

As is my experience so far, not a lot of businesses (wedding vendors) in Fairbanks have websites. So I do a lot of asking around and searching on Facebook. I got a few recommendations and they included a mix of having decent to crappy websites, only Facebook pages, and only a phone number to call. So – here we go! I made a lot of Facebook message contacts. Some people never got back to me, one returned my message and it took forever to get her on the phone and another contacted me via message and by phone. So I started by started to one caterer and went from there.

Well, she ended up being pretty flakey. I was able to contact her and send her some basic info to get started and try to set up a meeting with her. She called and asked how sure I was I wanted to book with her (before even meeting her) and said she had another bride wanting the same date. Since I had contacted her first, she was willing to hold the date. She flaked out on our first meeting and called the night before the rescheduled meeting time to say she was too busy during this holiday season and wanted to know if we could do it over the phone. She then asked what exactly I wanted to meet about in person and said we should probable meet in person. I should also mention that when talking about the kind of food I wanted, she had no suggestions and expected me to come up with food options that didn’t have bread or dairy in them and even said “it would be great if you have any recipes you like, if you could share them.” So, the end of our last conversation was that she wanted to check in after the new year and was willing to hold my date.

After this unhappy conversation and fear of not finding another caterer if I ended up not wanting to work with her, I looked more in-depth into other options. I found and met with a great caterer who was available, willing to work within my budget, and uses almost 100% local farmers and our local organic co-op. She was very open, honest, and most of all very organized and thorough. She had a lot of great ideas, was interested in me as a bride and my wedding and had a lot of great suggestions and referrals for other part of my reception. There was no mistaking when I left my meeting with her, that I wanted her to be part of our wedding.

So watch out for suggestions on catering and review of our vendors post-wedding. Our good and bad experiences will be shared so people don’t have to make the same mistakes we have or have the same encounters we have!

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