Frequently Asked Questions
I’m interested in having an event at Pond Hill Farm. How do I get started?
First, contact us at the Farm and confirm that we can meet your needs as far as anticipated number of guests, availability of the proper services for the type of event that you are looking for, and the availability of the facilities at the time and date that you are hoping to book.
How many people can you fit?
We can seat up to 80 people in the dining room. Up to 72 people fit very comfortably leaving more elbow room or leaving room for a buffet in the same room. For parties at the larger end of this range, we recommend the use of the tasting room and/or the addition of a tent on the deck for mingling space, kid’s tables, etc. For parties larger than 80, please inquire about other options and tents in the adjacent open space at the side of the vineyard.
How much does it cost to rent the facility?
We are a working farm and always have so much to do. Rental fees vary greatly based on the type of event, the day of the week, and the time of year. Please see the rates posted at our web site. Special rates may be available for local non-profit agencies.
How much does it cost to have our event catered?
Assuming that the event will be held in the main event barn, the first question to answer is “what type of event do we want?” Food for a wine and hors d’oeuvres event starts at $20 per person. A buffet style meal also starts at $20 per person. Sit-down, plated meals start at $30 per person for two courses.
What about staffing?
We charge $35 per service staff member for a minimum of three hours each. How many are required depends on the type of event. As a general guideline, one server per 15 guests is required for sit-down meal service and one server per 25 guests for buffet service. One bartender is required per 30 guests.
Can I bring my own food or caterer?
We ask that all guests of Pond Hill farm use our on-premise catering services.
What about bringing our own dessert?
We are happy to make dessert for you, however we do make exceptions, including allowing wedding and birthday cakes from an outside source. Please inquire; fees may apply.
Can I offer my guests a variety of dishes from which to choose?
If you are hoping to offer your guests options, a buffet may be the best answer for your event. For sit-down dinner service, most events offer only one meal. Under special circumstances we may be able to offer your guests more than one dinner option for an additional fee.
What if someone has special dietary needs such as a vegetarian or someone that cannot have gluten?
We are always happy to accommodate special dietary needs with advance notice.
Is all of the food that will be served at our event raised on the farm?
We try to use as much as possible from the farm. If it is important to you that we use food from the farm, tell us right away and we can guide you to selections that will be in season at the time of your event and create dishes that do not require supplemental ingredients.
What if what I want is out of season or the farm just happens to be out of it?
If you are set on a certain dish, regardless of whether or not we raised it, let us know that, too, and we’ll do our best to provide it for you.
What are our beverage options?
In addition to non-alcoholic beverages, we are pleased to offer wine, beer, and hard cider from our own Harbor Springs Vineyards and Winery at Pond Hill Farm and Tunnel Vision Brewery. There are a number of service options available including Cash Bar, Open Bar, and Limited Open Bar. Beer and hard cider are sold by the taste and by the glass and wines are sold by the taste, glass, and bottle. For the Open Bar and Limited Open Bar options, we are able to offer the bottle price on wines, which provides savings over the by the glass prices. They do not need to be ordered by the bottle, but rather than track glasses poured we count the open bottles at the end of the night. Open Bar is best for those that want to offer everything (all beers, wines, and ciders in the tasting portions and by the glass) and have the entire tab go to the host. Limited Open Bar option allows hosts to eliminate top-shelf beers and wines or even just limit the amount of wines opened. Cash Bar is usually for those events that want alcohol available but each guest is responsible for their own tab.
Can we bring our own beer, wine, or liquor?
Our licensing only allows for our own beer, wine, and hard cider to be consumed on the premises. No outside alcohol is allowed.
How do we decide what to serve for dinner?
First decide if you would like to have a buffet or a sit-down meal. Then, based on that and what we will have available, we can make suggestions and create a custom menu for your event.
Can we come in and sample some options for our menu?
Because we raise a limited amount of livestock and try to only use vegetables that are in season, tastings of food are usually not available. Beer, wine, and hard cider can be sampled daily from 11 to 6 in our Tasting Room. Our staff will be happy to point out the most popular selections.
What if I just want to have an informal event during the day?
The Garden Café at Pond Hill Farm, Harbor Springs Vineyards and Winery, & Tunnel Vision Brewery are open 360 days a year. While we do not currently have a private dining area we strive to accommodate all requests. Please ask about daytime events and see our Group Luncheon Menu for more information.
Kid’s birthday parties are welcome at the farm and you may choose to schedule a hayride or simply visit the animals, shoot the squash rocket, and use the outdoor picnic tables. However, we are unable to reserve tables in the dining room during peak season. Please contact us for options.
What if my questions have not been answered?
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.