Catering By Michaels
August 16, 2018

Action Stations to Wow Your Wedding Guests

August 16, 2018

Action Stations to Wow Your Wedding Guests

Catering By Michaels

Guests have a few basic expectations when attending a wedding. They expect a nice meal, a little booze, and dancing late into the night. What they probably don’t expect? Interactive stations where guests can see our chefs in action!

We recently sat down with Stacey Combrzynski, an Event Coordinator on our team, to discuss how action stations can captivate guests at a wedding (or any event!)

Why Would Someone Want to Use a Food Station at Their Wedding?

Food stations offer an element of interactivity that’s missing from many weddings. Normally at a wedding, you come in, sit down, and talk to the people at your table. We love action stations because they get people up and moving, adding a fun and social element to the experience. 

How are Catering by Michaels’ Action Stations Different Than A buffet?

The main difference is that we push the envelope when it comes to interactive stations and are willing to try new things that will be exciting for guests. A recent example is when we used tea siphons as a way to infuse wild mushrooms into broth at a ramen action station.

Interactive Ramen Station

Because of their dynamic nature, action stations can cater to the couple’s personalities more. We can also be more creative with action stations, so it really takes the guest experience to the next level.

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Catering By Michaels
February 14, 2018

Wedding Catering at Catalyst Ranch = Patricia + Fidencio’s Vibrant Love

February 14, 2018

Wedding Catering at Catalyst Ranch = Patricia + Fidencio’s Vibrant Love

Catering By Michaels

In celebration of Valentine’s Day, we’re giving you an inside look at Patricia and Fidencio’s vibrant Mexican fiesta themed wedding at Catalyst Ranch. The use of bold, vivid colors were inspired by the couples Mexican heritage and flawlessly carried out through every detail of their special day.

Catalyst Ranch served as the perfect backdrop, bringing the pops of color and festive decor to life! What we really loved about this wedding (besides the very sweet couple) was that is was so different from most of the weddings we typically cater. It’s unique, more casual and energetic vibe was not only fun for all the guests, but for the couple as well. 

As a little treat for anybody feeling the love this Valentine’s Day, let’s wander through all the Mexican fiesta themed elements in the photos captured by the very talented Cage + Aquarium

Our frozen margarita push pops — aways a guest favorite!

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In the case of Chris and Daniella, it was their professional involvements that brought them together. After quitting her job at a rival company, Daniella became a client of Chris’, and a networking event turned into love at first sight. From there, they became coworkers, friends, and the rest is history. 

Since both Chris and Daniella have connections in the hospitality industry, they were extremely easy to work with, and had an intimate knowledge of the wedding planning process. This helped make the process so much more fun! We worked closely to find the perfect venue to fit the romantic, city vibe they were looking for, and eventually settled on Harold Washington Library.

To complement the urban feel of their wedding, they wanted to serve a menu that was delicious, fun, and a bit different than what guests might expect. Since the couple love Gene & Jude’s hotdogs, we brought them in for a surprise late night snack, which was a huge hit! And if one Chicago favorite wasn’t enough, Chris & Daniella followed the theme of their wedding through to the guest favors and included Garrett’s popcorn (yum!). Needless to say, the wedding was a Chicago foodie’s dream and we had a blast putting it all together!

Photographer Jill Tiongco matched the vibe of the wedding seamlessly and captured these magical images of the day:

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Stewart Glass
April 11, 2017

Chicago Venues We Love: Independence Grove

April 11, 2017

Chicago Venues We Love: Independence Grove

Stewart Glass

If we could pick a favorite event venue, it would have to be Independence Grove. Ok, we’ll admit it – we’re a bit biased!

Events at Independence Grove: Quick Facts
Events at Independence Grove is the exclusive caterer and event management partner of Independence Grove Forest Preserve, and is a Catering by Michaels company. The venue opened in March of 2001, and was specifically designed with a premium visitor experience in mind. It is open year-round to host various events and celebrations.

Independence Grove is located in Libertyville, Illinois in a 1,100-acre nature preserve and recreation area. People know it for its pristine beauty and secluded setting. It’s been described as a Midwestern one-of-a-kind treasure because of its natural calmness, beautiful grassland and stunning lake views. Because of this, hosting an event at Independence Grove will provide a truly unique and memorable backdrop for any type of wedding, social or corporate event.

Independence Grove
There are three main event categories we normally get bookings for at Independence Grove.

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Catering By Michaels
March 21, 2017

Meet Nisar Naimi from Events by Nisar

March 21, 2017

Meet Nisar Naimi from Events by Nisar

Catering By Michaels

We love working with event planners, and recently had the opportunity to chat with Nisar Naimi from Events by Nisar. If you’re about to plan an event, his insights may be especially timely!

How did your career in events begin?

​It started off as a part-time job to make extra cash on the weekends during my undergrad years at Loyola University. I used to work for a non-profit community organization, and my boss at the time introduced me to his friend who was an event planner. I worked with her throughout my college years, then went full-time with event planning once I graduated.​

Why do you love working in the events industry?

​I love that it’s a new experience every day! I get bored very easily, so I love the creative and personal interactions that allow me to have a new and exciting experience every day. More than anything, I love all of the relationships I am able to build and foster.​

Events by Nisar wedding

What are current trends you love?

​Simple is more.

  • I love the mixing of metals (golds, rose golds, silvers).
  • Lighter, softer tones in decor have also recently become very popular.
  • The rustic theme is very big at the moment.

Couples are now so much more open to being creative with their menu selections, especially in terms of live action stations, exotic ingredients, and presentation. It seems that recently, food has definitely taken precedent over decor and other event items. ​

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