Planning a graduation party in Knoxville on the cheap.
March 11, 2008 12:36 PM   Subscribe

Throwing a party, in Knoxville, on a budget, for a bunch of out-of-towners (myself included). I need suggestions!

My sister will be graduating from college in early May of this year. My mom has tasked me with putting together some sort of reception to celebrate (it's been a long, particularly tough struggle for my sister to get to where she is now, so we're all extremely proud of her).

The family (which is quite large) will be descending on Knoxville, and, since I'm not from there and my sister is swamped with her studies, I'm hoping y'all might be able to help me figure out the what and where. Here are the parameters:

- The venue needs to be big enough to accommodate around 30 people, possibly more.
- Centrally located to downtown Knoxville would probably be good, but I won't completely rule out going up into the mountains.
- Although the question of who's ultimately footing the bill is still unanswered, we still need to keep expenses down. I'm ballparking around $15 per person.
- We have a gazillion kids in the group, so kid-friendly is very important.

I've read this thread and this thread, from which I learned about Calhoun's, but I'm open to other ideas. My family is mildy crazy, very casual, and just wants to celebrate my sister's perseverence and reaching the end of a very, very hard road.
posted by shiu mai baby to Travel & Transportation around Knoxville, TN (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Copper Cellar may be on the higher end of your price range, but the food is great as I remember (haven't been to Knoxville in a couple of years). I also love Altruda's, but that's down in West Knoxville. I'd also recommend Calhoun's, but I see that's already on the radar!
posted by timetoevolve at 2:50 PM on March 11, 2008

Barley's has an upstairs room that you used to be able to reserve for parties. You may still be able to and it would more then be able to handle a large crowd.

Alternatively, if you are looking for a different sort of experience and are more the do-it-yourselfer types, you can rent River John's Island which comes equipped with bbq pits, portolets, and an option to camp. (Weddings are held there so the man himself can probably give you all sorts of information about catering if that would work for you). I'm not sure how much renting the island costs but I went to a camping wedding there for a couple who aren't rolling in it and it was fantastic.
posted by ilikecookies at 3:33 PM on March 11, 2008

Response by poster: Thank you both for these answers. ilikecookies, the River John's Island suggestion is definitely intriguing. Having this thing at a restaurant is definitely NOT a requirement, so I'm totally open to more DIY options like this one as well.
posted by shiu mai baby at 5:28 AM on March 12, 2008

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