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Tonawanda Castle creates new tradition

BY: Tiffany Monde, Tonawanda Source | January 07, 2013

TONAWANDA - On Dec. 31, New Years Eve, partygoers put on their finest, and headed to the Tonawanda Castle to ring in the New Year and start a new tradition for Tonawanda.

“We were keeping the date open for anyone who wanted to do a wedding, but we didn’t have one this year so we decided to try and start an annual event,” said Lindsay Valois, event coordinator for the Tonawanda Castle.

They got in touch with the individuals who run the Gateway Harbor Ball Drop and worked in conjunction with that event. Anyone attending the Castle’s gala had the opportunity to then go see the fireworks and the ball drop with VIP parking; about 25 percent of the guests took this opportunity while the rest stayed for a champagne toast at midnight.

Tickets to the event were $49.95 plus tax. This included a full station style dinner, champagne toast, and the Alex Rene Big Swing Band. About 130 people attended and Valois said the event attracted an older crowd with ages ranging from about 40 to 70 years old.

With so many events in the city that are crowded with a young and rowdy crowd on New Years, Valois said this was a great alternative for the older generation to celebrate the night.

“I had a lot of people call and say they are very excited for an event like this because it appeals to older crowds, I think they are liking it,” said Valois.

She said the event was a success and they plan to continue it in the future.

The Tonawanda Castle was built between 1896 and 1897, constructed as an armory for the 25th Separate Company of the National Guard.

The 38,000 square foot armory was sold in 2004 in a private auction to Mostafa Tanbakuchi, who had a vision to transform the building into the unique banquet and event structure it is today.

The building is listed on national and New York State historic registries.

“A lot of people are excited to see the building and I think it’s turned out to be a nice night out for a lot of people,” said Valois.

The Tonawanda Castle hosts Weddings, corporate functions, parties, fundraisers and more.

If you are interested in having an event hosted there, contact them at 743-8544 or you can visit their website at www.tonawandacastle.com.

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