5 Reasons Why You Should Start Planning Your Christmas Party in July

It’s hard to believe that it’s already July and even harder to believe that December is less than 6 months away.  The end of the year is approaching fast and so is your company’s holiday party. What separates mediocre parties from amazing ones is the preparation.  Starting the planning process now will prevent issues and stress as the event gets closer. So here are 5 tips for why you should start planning your Holiday or end-of-the-year party now before it’s too late – straight from the event planning experts here at Catering by Jonathan Byrd’s!

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Partner Venue Spotlight: Daniel’s Vineyard

If you are an engaged couple looking for a picture-perfect vineyard wedding venue but are unable to fly to Napa Valley, you will be pleasantly surprised to find a beautiful vineyard right here in Central Indiana. For all the Indiana brides looking for a super chic winery venue, look no further than Jonathan Byrd’s newest Partner Venue: Daniel’s Vineyard.

Daniel’s Vineyard is nestled in McCordsville just off 86th Street and a block away from Geist Reservoir, but its beautiful landscape and unique décor make you think you’re in Napa Valley. Acres of vines surround the winding driveway as you approach the building, giving you a sense of privacy and exclusivity.

Daniel’s Vineyard – Pictures Courtesy of Daniel’s Vineyard
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5 Things to Tell Your Caterer to Make Sure You Have Incredible Food at Your Wedding

When planning a wedding you’ll want to make sure you provide food for your guests. How much you want to spend is up to you, but you don’t want to underdeliver. Whether your wedding is a small intimate affair at a private residence, or a rowdy party at a barn – Catering by Jonathan Byrd’s has great tips about what you should know before calling a wedding caterer.

1 – Your Venue & Date

Choosing your venue is first on your list in the wedding planning process. Some venues like 502 East have an exclusive caterer that they work with. If your wedding is at such a venue, you can save with packages that include your room fees and catering.

Once you have a venue picked out, you’ll want to lock in your date. Once you have this, you’ll have an over-all idea of your time line for how quickly you must get all your details together. It’s especially important to be able to present the date to the caterer because they may not be available.

If your venue does not have a specific catering list, feel free to ask for Catering by Jonathan Byrd’s. We travel just about anywhere and love to make connections with new venues. And if your venue doesn’t have a bar, but you still want a champagne toast as well as beer, wine, or cocktails for your guests, a caterer like Jonathan Byrd’s can set up a full bar on-site as well.

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Winter 2019 Wrap-Up Blog

December and the Christmas season feels like it was a year ago instead of only 4 months, but we’ve been working so hard that it has all sort of blended together. The next thing we know – it’s Spring! We’re playing catch-up and filling you in with some of the best of the events we have either hosted at 502 East or catered all over central Indiana.

Holiday Parties

Back in December we had a lot of end-of-the-year celebrations as well as our usual holiday parties. Companies treated their employees to parties with food, games, live music, and of course great food from Catering by Jonathan Byrd’s.

We had a couple of these parties at 502 East that transformed our ballrooms into casinos. Blackjack, craps, roulette, and Texas holdem tables ran all night long. Others hosted parties at 502 East boasting extravagant buffets and action stations such as those creating delicious hot roast beef sliders. These employers also rewarded their valued employees with award ceremonies, fun games, and a live bands.

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Jonathan Byrd’s Partners with Janus Developmental Services

The Catering by Jonathan Byrd’s team hosts many events for non-profit and community organizations throughout the year at the 502 East Event Centre, but none of them touches our hearts like Janus does.

Janus is a group that provides education, job training, and skill development to disabled adults to give them the opportunity to contribute within the community. Programs within Janus help these adults with job training, education, and independent living.  Since 1979, Janus services have provided individuals the opportunity to hold jobs, develop interpersonal skills, explore new interests and live more independent and fulfilled lives. These disabled adults are referred to as “clients,” and there is really no limit to what they can do. 

Chef Brett shows clients how to make italian sabayon with berries
(picture courtesy of Krista Lawson)

What makes Janus fun for clients is the variety of training and activities they can be a part of.  Job training is not limited to one job. Clients can work together in a factory setting constructing aquarium tank lids, performing various duties at the Janus Golf and Batting Center, creating paintings and birdhouses through the hidden talents program, working in the Capabilities Café located at the Hamilton County Courthouse, or participate in the culinary team preparing and serving food at Janus’ regular community luncheons.  These latter programs teach clients about food preparation, food safety, customer service, and money handling.

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2019 Wedding Trends

When you become engaged, everyone wants to know your wedding plans even before you’ve clicked on Pinterest!   If your 2019 “Wedding To-Do List” is stressing you out, don’t sweat it. You’re not alone!  Taylor Leavell is not only the Wedding Specialist here at 502 Event Centre, she is also currently planning her own wedding! Taylor knows firsthand how stressful it is to navigate through the planning process, but nothing excites her more than talking about wedding details. Please keep reading to see the top wedding trends of 2019 and a few valuable tips that will inspire you…  


Coral is the pantone color of 2019. Coral is one of those colors that isn’t quite orange and isn’t quite pink, but it pairs well with a variety of other colors.  Coral and Pink or Coral and Orange can give your wedding the look of a real sunset. “Bridal Beauty is going back to a classic feel. You’ll start to see brides embracing a natural look but give it a modern touch with a bold color like coral,” said Taylor.

Other color combination possibilities are Coral with Navy.  Then, there’s always the “regal/royal” combination of Coral and Gold.   Coral, Mint, and White can be bold and modern, & Coral, Green, and Beige can be more natural and rustic.

Pictures: Paper Street Press, Frill, EWI

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Review – Accelerent

Indianapolis is a booming city that continues to grow each day. With major tech companies locating to the Hoosier state and new small businesses starting all the time, how do all these businesses connect with other?

Within the city are a plethora of networking groups which are divided based on age, gender, location, and industry. And while joining these smaller groups is helpful, you can sometimes find yourself trapped in a bubble. You might find that you’re not reaching your target consumer – only your competition, or maybe your networking group just doesn’t have an outside perspective. That’s where Accelerent comes in.

Accelerent is a national business development platform that connects local business leaders to each other. It is not a networking group because Accelerent invites only one business from each industry to participate and connects the decision makers from each industry to each other and encourages them to build relationships with each other, enough to trust referring each other to relationships that could potentially use their services. There are branches located in 5 cities across the country, and its branch in Indianapolis boasts over 55 partnered businesses. Jonathan Byrd’s and 502 East Event Centre are proud to be a part of such an innovative organization.

Accelerent Partners Eat Breakfast at 502 East Event Centre While Listening to A Guest Speaker
Nathaniel Edmunds Photography

For the last three years, 502 East Event Centre has hosted 5 breakfast events each year for Accelerent.  Members from various businesses come and eat a breakfast freshly-made by the culinary team at Jonathan Byrd’s. Each breakfast features a guest speaker and about 300+ business leaders attend.

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November 2018 Wrap Up Blog

Adults and Children of all ages will never forget some of our incredible November events! We were proud to provide food and space for many charity events, coming-of-age parties, and not one, but two Disney-themed celebrations! These events will surely go down in our history like a tale as old as time.


Ben’s Bar Mitzvah

It’s not everyday that a young man turns the big 1-3. Ben wanted his Bar Mitzvah to be the talk of the town with lots of balloons, music, food, and games! Guests drank glow-in-the-dark mocktails (and there were cocktails for the chaperones), and enjoyed a meal complete with a live-action wing station, a corn risotto station, and ice cream from a giant shoe box for dessert!

Catering by Jonathan Byrd’s understands how important Bar/Bat Mitzvahs are to families and that’s why we work with you to meet religious and dietary restrictions, without ruining everyone’s fun. No matter the celebration, we aim to make it a hit for guests of all ages.

Pictures Courtesy Of The Frugal Photographer

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October 2018 Wrap Up Blog

October weather in Central Indiana can be hard to predict. One minute its sunny, the next its windy and rainy. Like the weather, Jonathan Byrd’s transitions fast between events as well. Whether it’s a small catering to a big wedding or transitioning from a large conference into multiple meetings, at Catering by Jonathan Byrd’s and 502 East Event Centre, we’re ready for anything our guests (or the weather) throws at us. Continue reading to see some of the events we hosted and catered at this October.

Ritchie – Hammersley Wedding

Missy and Travis gathered at 502 in front of all their friends and family. Not just their human family, but their four-legged one as well. Bridesmaids walked down the aisle with the couple’s 3 dogs. Missy and Travis took pictures at the nearby Center for the Performing Arts and then had their ceremony and reception at 502! Congratulations to the beautiful couple!

Photos Courtesy of Rakoteet Photography 

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September 2018 Wrap Up

September for us means Fall, Fabulous Events, and Fresh Produce! We’ve been having a great time being a part of some unique events throughout all of Central Indiana this month, including events at 502 East Event Centre. Keep reading to see some of the special events that kicked off the fall season.

Patel Wedding

Samir and Pooja knew that having a three-day wedding extravaganza meant they would need a lot of space for all their ceremonies, receptions, and wardrobe changes. So rather than booking three different venues for each ceremony, they came to 502 East Event Centre and had their Mehndi, Vihdi, Garba, Baraat, wedding ceremony, multiple luncheons, and wedding receptions during Labor Day Weekend. We were stunned by all the intricate décor and dramatic backdrop changes. Congratulations to the beautiful couple!

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Partner Venue Spotlight: Dallara IndyCar Factory

Calling all Race Fans! If you’re looking for high-energy venue that captures the frenzy of IndyCar Racing, look no further than the Dallara IndyCar Factory. This expansive event space combines all the fun of racing  – with a modern feel – and Jonathan Byrd’s amazing food to match! The Dallara IndyCar Factory is one of our favorite partner venues for many reasons, but the most exciting aspect is its versatile space and interactive activities that really set it apart from any other venue in Indianapolis.

Built in 2012, a combined effort between Dallara Automobili and IndyCar Experience, this building is a modern museum, factory, and event space all in one. Located on Main Street in Speedway and only 1/3 of a mile south of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, it is filled with interactive exhibits and attractions. The Dallara IndyCar Factory has over 30,000 square feet of available space. They’ve hosted everything from board meetings to weddings to award shows to black-tie galas.

Pictures Courtesy of Dallara IndyCar Factory & Kristin Hornberger Photography

For those curious about the name, Dallara Automobili is an Italian chassis manufacturer for competitive racecars and high-performance road cars. In July 2010, Dallara was named the IndyCar chassis manufacturer for the 2012 season and beyond.

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August 2018 Wrap Up

The arrival of August marks not only the closing of summer, but also the countdown to the end of the year. Our August started out hot with lots of big weddings and corporate events, but now, as we say good-bye to summer, we’re gearing up for our busy wedding and holiday season. Keep scrolling to see the best of our events this summer and see what we’re excited about coming up!

Kellam’s Wedding at Palladium

Congratulations to Anica and Chris! This adorable couple had their wedding and reception at the Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel and Jonathan Byrd’s was honored to cater their beautiful celebration. Love was clearly in the air for these two as they were surrounded by balloons, flowers, and family! Guests munched on some pretty amazing chicken and waffles made fresh on site by our incredible chefs. While guests cut the cake, there was an artist capturing the scene in watercolor. Congratulations to this beautiful couple!

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