MOORHEAD - Two of the metro area's largest catering companies are joining forces to operate the Armory Event Center slated to open in October at 904 Center Ave.

Chef's Table Catering and Urban Foods Catering have merged their Minnesota operations, according to a press release issued Tuesday, Sept. 21. Urban Foods will operate under the Chef's Table umbrella as the exclusive caterer of the Armory Event Center and will continue to serve its existing clients off-site catering needs. Jeff Reitz will continue to lead the business as managing partner with the help of Jake Hughes as general manager.

The Armory Event Center is expected to open in October in a 1915 building recently reclaimed and transformed by architect Kevin Bartram. The building was a National Guard armory until the 1930s. Most recently the space was home to a Muscatell auto dealership.

Chef’s Table Catering, established in 2015 alongside The Sanctuary Event Center, has grown its catering operations significantly over the past six years. According to Managing Partner Dan Hurder, the business had reached a point of saturation with the addition of venue partners such as The Pines and RiverHaven Events Center.

“Initial waves of COVID in early 2020 caused us to hit the brakes on our plans to grow the company for a bit; however, we anticipated a strong return to catering in a post-COVID era and continued to keep future growth on our radar despite the immediate setbacks,” said Hurder.

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“When the opportunity presented itself to join forces with Jeff and the team at Urban Foods Catering, we knew it was the right direction for the company. Their catering brand is strong, their team is strong, and their reputation for providing a comparable level of service is strong. The timing with the opening of the Armory Event Center provided us with the kitchen space needed to grow, and Jeff’s team brings with them the skills necessary to ramp up operations quickly,” added Kent Larsen, managing partner for Chef’s Table Catering.

Reitz thanked Usher's House for use of its kitchen after the business lost its lease at 69 Fourth St. N. in Fargo this spring.

“We are looking forward to this opportunity to join forces with Chef’s Table Catering while continuing to call Moorhead home,” said Reitz. “I am so appreciative of Usher’s House for letting us work out of their kitchen while we managed these logistics. Their generosity and trust allowed us time to get into our brand new kitchen and get to work growing our business."

Chef’s Table Catering will continue to operate the kitchen based out of Sanctuary Event Center and will continue to service clients at its exclusive venue partners, along with corporate clients throughout the region, and will focus on North Dakota based venues for wedding catering. Urban Foods catering will operate the kitchen based out of the Armory Event Center, maintain catering services for its existing corporate clients, and will focus on Minnesota-based venues for wedding catering.

The merger between the two businesses will officially take place Oct. 1, 2021.