Recently Mike Sherman and I ventured to the Southern Illinois town of Beckemeyer. Consequently, I’ve got a quiz for those of you city folks who don’t make it down state so often. Which of the following Illinois towns is the fake one: Nashville, Dudleyville, Hookdale, or Brownstown? (I’ll leave time for you to guess.)
They’re all real. All of them. And you pass them all on the way to Buxton’s Banquet Hall, the hidden gem of Beckemeyer, IL! If you can’t tell, Mike and I are ourselves city folk, and the trip to Buxton’s Banquet Hall was a new experience for us. After 6 hours of driving and miles and miles of corn fields, it was looking less and less like we’d find any place big enough to host the 400 people this wedding was anticipating. Sure enough, Buxton’s Banquet Hall appeared on the horizon, and I truly don’t know if a more applicable use of the term “hidden gem” has ever been found.
Buxton’s Banquet Hall is that perfect combination of rustic charm and charming renovations. It has that comforting feel of a place that’s been around for awhile, with nice touches like granite trim, mahogany finishes and large concrete bar tops everywhere you look. It is also a versatile venue with an indoor dining area, a renovated barn and an adorable patio, each distinct and perfect for any event. The indoor area seats 250, and the barn seats 300, so with a wedding this size they were conveniently able to combine the two areas for their 400-person dinner.
A Rare Opportunity!
One of my favorite parts about doing weddings is getting to work with the other vendors, and as it happens, this time one of them was the bride! Stephanie and Rachel at Buxton’s Banquet Hall do much of the wedding planning there, and it was an absolute treat to get to play for Rachel’s special day. The two of them have a sterling reputation for being easy to work with and extremely friendly, and their reviews reflect the same. We loved getting to give something back to them!
For those of you not from Illinois, there is a common misconception that Illinois is basically one giant Chicago. Most from inside the state would tell you that’s not the case, (and folks from Beckemeyer are almost definitely fans of St. Louis teams!) There are kind of a lot of mini sub-cultures throughout the state once you get south of I-80, and as we learned on our trip to Buxton’s Banquet Hall, Clinton County, IL is a special place. There is a kind of southern hospitality that you’re hard pressed to find anywhere but the actual south, and a feeling like the town has welcomed you into the family for the duration of your stay. If you’ve found yourself with a large guest list but desire that intimate feel with attention to detail, look no further than Beckemeyer’s own Buxton’s Banquet Hall.
For more information on Buxton’s Banquet Hall, visit their Facebook page (and like them for updates!) here. To book Felix and Fingers Dueling Pianos for your next event, visit www.felixandfingers.com.