Written by Laura Beam in the January 2014 Issue
With the feasts and festivities of the holidays under our belts (literally!), it’s hard to imagine having to plan one more party or even look at decadent foods again for a while. Yet for many event planners and newly engaged brides-to-be, January kicks off an exciting time of menu and venue planning. So while most of us are starting new exercise programs and choking down salads this month, the experts will be busy making preparations for all the business and social functions we’ll attend in the coming year.
Whether it’s a corporate luncheon, wedding reception, casual party or black tie event of the season, the food ultimately sets the mood, making it one of the most important aspects of event planning. If you’ve noticed a more engaging, interactive atmosphere at some of the functions you’ve attended lately, it’s likely thanks to the well-executed menu and clever serving methods that are setting hot new trends in catering.
Creativity reigns supreme in the world of catering today as party hosts seek decorative displays, interactive food stations and small-plate menus which motivate guests to mingle as they munch. Running Wild Catering, a legendary Oklahoma City company with 16 years of expertise, specializes in creating custom menus with tremendous diversity and flair. Formerly Johnnie’s Catering, the company changed its name in 2010, embracing an exciting new culture in food service that encourages clients to let their imaginations run wild in planning the perfect fare to complement the theme of an event.
Debbie Lowery, one of three owners at Running Wild Catering, began her career in the restaurant business, became a certified chef and quickly discovered her passion for catering. “In a restaurant, I didn’t always see my customer,” Lowery recalls. “In catering you are with the customer all the way. And the reward at the end of a successful event, when the client tells you, ‘Good job; we loved the food!’ makes your feet and back not hurt so bad.”
Catering more than 60 weddings a year, Running Wild also provides food for monthly corporate events, the medical community, private home catering and offers holiday boxed dinners as well. In addition, they assist customers with venue, entertainment, décor and professional bar service options. Lowery believes the company’s focus on good, everyday foods in abundant proportions, at fair prices, has contributed to its success.
Also behind the success is Executive Chef Teresa Walters who excels at creating virtually any food a client desires. As Lowery notes, “We love a challenge when it comes to themes and food, and we love to decorate our tables to match the event.” Comfort foods and themed fare like Mexican and Italian are always a hit. Clients can view a remarkable menu of delicious sauces, inventive appetizers presented in the most artistic ways, breakfast items and amazing desserts to get their creative juices flowing. Italian foods are always a hit, including a pasta bar that allows customers to choose their own meats, sauces and pasta. One of the most popular appetizers is the Caesar Grilled Chicken or Pork Carnitas on Sweet Potatoes.
Whether creating a Wild West, garden party or cookie bar theme, this reputable company has earned its place as a preferred caterer. One of the most interesting requests they once handled was an outer space theme. The staff had fun with the presentation and décor. And the food, of course, was out of this world.