GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A woman-owned private events company is expanding on Grand Rapids’ West Side.
Thursday, the Grand Rapids Planning Commission approved a special land use permit for Special Occasions, which plans to renovate a mostly vacant building next to its current business into a new banquet hall and events center.
Special Occasions West will be located at 846 Cesar E. Chavez Ave. SW just south of Martin Luther King Jr. Street. The roughly 2,300-square-foot space would accommodate about 145 people inside and feature a catering preparation area. Outside, the venue will include a canopy covered space bordered by a low fence and a green space at the front corner of the building.
Owner Jamie Carnes plans to allow live music inside and alcohol service by third party vendors. She expects the venue to typically host corporate and nonprofit events during the week and weddings on weekends.
“I also serve in the Grandville area Business Association which is the neighborhood association for that space, so they are very familiar with and excited about what we are bringing to this neighborhood,” Carnes said, adding that she plans to give a formal presentation about the project to the Roosevelt Park Association as well.
Special Occasions also owns the parking lot across the street, which it plans to repave and mark for banquet hall use. Carnes says her business also has an informal agreement with a church just south of it to share parking spaces, since they both typically operate at different times.
Carnes says the event venue “will be a space that is welcoming and inclusive.”
“Our team truly has a passion for creating community,” she stated in the application submitted to the planning commission.
Special Occasions West is expected to be open daily starting at 8 a.m. The outside space would close at 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 8 p.m. on Sundays. The indoor facility will close at midnight Monday through Saturday and 10 p.m. on Sundays.