Meet the Organizer: Joshua Yates Blows Up the Chicago Dining Scene

Each day this week, we’re profiling an organizer from a city where we see some great events popping up. Be sure to check out our Facebook page, where we reveal the city each morning, as well as photos, events, and more!

Meet Joshua, of Pure Kitchen Catering in Chicago, who has seen everything from a dog taking center stage for all the wrong reasons, to a bride blowing up her own wedding cake.

Even after starting his own catering business, Joshua still goes weak for his grandmother's fried chicken.

Name: Joshua Yates
Hometown: Nashville, Tennessee
My Next Event: On February 14 we’ve partnered with CS Modern Luxury to host A Savory Pair, an exclusive, food-forward Valentine’s Day dinner at Room 1520.

You should come to my event if you: Are interested in a change of pace this Valentine’s Day. We created this event because we’re tired of mediocre menus and over-crowded dining rooms on February 14. A Savory Pair is going to be something special, and guests can leave knowing that part of their night helps the Association House of Chicago. We hope to see you there!

Favorite Eventbrite Feature: Resending invitations to only those who have not yet responded. This keeps me from digging through and manually removing those guests that have already been in contact (or spamming everyone).

Favorite Meal: My grandmother’s fried chicken and cornbread!

Favorite Movie: I’m a huge Alfred Hitchcock fan.

The Best Event I Ever Attended Was: Barack Obama’s acceptance speech. There was so much energy and excitement in the air. Regardless of your political affiliation, it was an awesome moment for Chicago!

My worst event experience was: when the groom didn’t show. I learned that no matter how much you plan and prepare in life, some things are just simply out of our control.

Best Event Memory: There was once a bride that wanted us to blow her wedding cake up with an M-80. We were at a brand new venue and they didn’t have many restrictions. After the newlyweds cut the cake, it was moved to the middle of the dance floor. The DJ hit the strobe light and the groom lit the fuse. Twenty minutes later I’m pretty sure the venue was editing their “Rules and Regulations” page!

My Inspiration for Hosting Events is: Pure Kitchen Catering works mostly in the wedding industry, and weddings are anything but stress-free. It takes careful planning, precise organization, and lots coordination to orchestrate a successful wedding. But that one moment, that one special moment when the bride and groom have spoken their vows and finished their speeches, when they let all the worry and stress of the last twelve months go, when they kick off their shoes and hit the dance floor, that instance when they truly smile for the first time as a married couple…that’s my inspiration.

Favorite Kitchen Appliance: Mandoline. I HATE chopping onions.

Least Favorite Kitchen Chore: Chopping onions.

Favorite Ingredient: Butter. It just tastes good on everything.

I can’t live without: my wonderful Pure Kitchen team. Everyone from the very back of the kitchen to the very front of office work so hard to meet our clients’ needs and this company would be nothing without all of their efforts.

I get through my busiest days by: Drinking a quality cup of coffee, and then three more.

My advice for first time event planners is: plan for everything! You never know what might happen at the last minute; make sure your ready for it!

My favorite thing about Chicago is: the big city life with the Midwestern heart.

The most memorable attendee I ever had at my event was: Rocky (a dog), because he felt the need to relieve himself in the middle of a live auction during an event we were doing for a local animal shelter.

What’s your favorite meal? Share with us on Facebook and Twitter!

Meet Maddie from Sydney, and Leigh from Toronto.