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Venue Type Banquet Hall
Hours Available anytime
Accessibility Accessible to persons with disabilities.

The Barrel House Events Center

903 Manchester St., Lexington, KY, 40511
(859) 608-5069

Created by Bluegrasscater

Location & Nearby Info
The Barrel House Events Center
903 Manchester St.
Lexington, KY 40511
(859) 608-5069
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Reviews & Comments
Dec 28, 2012 - L_E
There are pros and cons

For our first meeting the events manager, Kelly, was very attentive and met with me for an entire hour for our first appointment so we could discuss numbers, costs, and expectations. Over the course of the several months that I planned for my wedding we met about four or five times. She was always very pleasant and friendly. But after our initial appointment she showed up late (about 20 minutes) for every single one after. There was one appointment that she forgot about completely and while she was fulfilling alternate plans I was left sitting around at the BH wasting my time. I started to wonder how reliable they were going to be the day of the wedding since she seemed to have trouble remembering our appointments.
For one of our last appointments I met with both Kelly and Jill. Jill is in charge of the catering. We started discussing some of the specifics as far as food and bar choices and the hours for the open bar. I had brought my own contract that listed these things and I wanted us all to sign it. My reception was from 7-11pm. I only wanted 3 hours of open bar, so I told them I’d like to have it from 7-10. Jill states something along the lines of “you really probably want to start your open bar at 6:30 instead of 7 because you will have a few guests show up early and you don’t want them to have to sit around and wait for drinks.” Hmm… this really didn’t make sense to me because why pay for ~$20pp for 3 hours of open bar and then waste 30 minutes of that time for a handful of people that might come early. I politely said “No, I think I’d rather it just start at 7.” Jill became frustrated and said that she really thinks I should push it back to 6:30. Again I told her no, I want it to start at 7 so we can take advantage of the full 3 hours. She then said “Well that’s fine but put it on your contract because I know how you young brides are and the day of the wedding you are going to forget you ever said this and you’ll be upset when your guests arrive before 7 and can’t enjoy the bar.” I thought this statement was rather offensive. She was talking to me like I was a child. I’m a woman in my mid-twenties and we are paying them thousands of dollars to have the reception we want. I told her my age and that I came prepared so that there won’t be any hiccups on the wedding day … I let her know by my tone of voice that I was offended by her comment and then she STILL kept going with it. She wanted the last word. Kelly then told Jill to step down because I clearly knew what I wanted. I can see why Kelly is the face of the business because although she was often late and a little frazzled, she was always much friendlier and cooperative and Jill seemed to be hot-headed. I met Jill again about a month after that and she didn’t even remember who I was.
Also, I know a lot of brides would like to taste test their menu before the reception. Well it seems that Jill will only do that for certain special brides. One day I met with Kelly and while we were meeting Jill was letting another couple taste test a few dishes for their reception and when I asked her if I could do the same she said no and that she doesn’t do that for everybody but if I wanted to go to an event they were holding that weekend and try their chicken I could. She didn’t even try to cover up the fact that some brides get the special treatment.
Let’s move forward to the actual reception. Overall things went very smoothly. But I would like to tell you all if you are interested in getting the photobooth it is probably NOT what you are expecting. I thought it’d be like the ones in the mall because that is what I’ve seen at other receptions. It is actually a curtain with props, a Nikon camera, and a laptop. It’s open, not closed. The laptop kept restarting for updates and our guests continually had to ask someone to fix it and get it running again. A lot of our guests said they wanted to do the photobooth but when they got inside it stopped working for them so they weren’t able to do it. A little disappointing considering it was $600. All in all though, it was fun and I’m glad that we had it.
On our wedding day one of the two projectors had a lighting issue and most of the screen was green. This might’ve been fixed since then. The other projector is fine but they do not put out HD.
The DJ is very nice but I believe is a little inexperienced. He seemed unknowledgeable about some of the technology. He kept forgetting to restart the slideshow and he messed up the slideshow that was supposed to go with our father/daughter dance but after a few minutes he had it figured out. Other than those two things there were really no other problems. He was very pleasant and really tried to work things out for us.
For our reception we had a wonderful time and our guests say it’s one of the best receptions they’ve been to. I think that the main issue we had was directly correlated to communication. There were definitely a few times before the wedding day that I was nervous, but in the end things went really, really well. The atmosphere of the venue was great. The lighting was perfect. The set up was very nice and Kelly and Jill were very helpful the night of. I felt that they both went beyond our expectations during our reception. I would recommend this venue to other brides, but I would also recommend that they figure out details, numbers and costs and then write up their own contract. That way nothing is forgotten and it’s clear what the plans for evening are.

Jul 16, 2012 - User123
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Well, I have taken quite sometime to finally decide to write this review. Mainly because I do not like writing bad reviews, I would much rather refer someone to a good business than complain about one I did not like. However, I have finally decided that I cannot in good conscious not warn people about the way the Barrel House conducts their business.
When I first called The Barrel House I spoke with Kelly, we met and it seemed perfect. My husband and I were on a very limited budget and wanted something specific. We were hoping to have a beach themed venue and were told that this was perfect because they already had everything needed for that, we would not have to provide a thing! Furthermore, we wanted to have a Nerf war at the end of the reception, interesting I know but we are unconventional and like to have fun. The Barrel House said the Nerf war sounded fun and they would be fine with that, ultimately this is why we went with them.
When we received our contract nothing was filled in. We were concerned so we spoke with Kelly and we were assured everything was included, this is the same contract they give to everyone, only a formality. So we went with it.
Well, the day of our reception we call to ask if there is anything we need to bring. We were shocked when we were told “everything” the only thing included is the space and the DJ. No decorations. We had to rush out at the last minute and spend hundreds on lame decorations that were not at all what we wanted. But, I figured this was partially my fault for not insisting on a more specific contract.
Then that night everything is going great, we let it go and decided to just have fun. The DJ was nice, but warning he is not a real DJ, this is obviously a guy who just does this is his spare time, he still uses CDs! Then we are nearing the end, we have our first Nerf war battle and Kelly walks in. She immediately goes to the bar to check what the purchases were for the night (we had a cash bar, as I said we were on a budget.) Well, our friends are not really big drinkers so not much was purchased. After checking the balance Kelly turns to our guests with a sour look on her face. She then yells at to stop the Nerf war. She did not even have the decency to come to us directly! Yelling at a guest, I couldn’t believe it. It was obviously a reaction to the fact that she had not made more money that night, well, we already paid for the venue!
At that point the night was pretty much over. We stood around and talked for a few minutes and then decided to pack up early. We had the space until 10pm, and by that time had pretty much everything outside. Then, the final straw, at 9:50 Kelly turns all the lights out. We were literally packing up, cleaning everything up for her, so she wouldn’t have to do a thing, and she turns the lights out, guests were there and everything. One of my friends shouted “Hey! We are still packing up!” We decided not to say anything because we were not about to have a confrontation on the day of our wedding reception. We ended up just taking the party to our house.
Summary: I have never been treated so badly by anyone in the customer service industry. We communicated plenty up until the day of the event and all seemed great. When the day came everything changed, it was like dealing with a totally different person. Rude to guests, lied about what was included, and the woman is a freaking nutcase!! I wish she had shown her true colors before the event, we would have cut our losses on the deposit and went somewhere else.

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