FARGO - Pat Bresnahan was understandably absent from an interview last week with the owners of Grain Designs, a custom furniture and decor business that recently opened a new retail space in the Shoppes at Blu Water Creek, 3265 45th St. S.
His business partners, Phil Bruckbauer, Blain Mikkonen and Grant Koenig, debuted their new store while he worked on their next project - The Pines, a wedding and event center under construction on the site of the company's warehouse and workshop 8 miles south of Fargo.
Bresnahan and his fiancee, Nicolette Berge, will be the first couple married there on Sept. 15.
While he admits he's a little nervous it will be ready in time, Bresnahan said he and Berge are excited and grateful to be getting married at such a unique venue.
The Pines is already home to a farmhouse that features suites for brides and grooms, four bedrooms, a kitchen and an inground pool.
Under construction nearby is an event center that will seat up to 400 guests. Taylor Belk of Epic Homes is overseeing the project.
Koenig said while they're known for their reclaimed wood projects, the event center will not be the typical barn-style structure that has become popular in recent years.
"We didn't really want to carry that rustic nature over into the venue. We more so wanted to create a contemporary space that has our touch, but also enables the bride and her party to decorate it however they want," Koenig said.
The space will feature exposed beams, white reclaimed wood paneling, reclaimed wood sliding doors, and tables from Grain Designs.
Mikkonen believes the appeal of The Pines will be about more than the structure.
"Similar to Grain Designs, our goal with The Pines is to create an experience and a unique place to gather. We had a discussion about our products being meaningful and about gathering around our tables to create an experience. So, we asked ourselves how we could do that on a larger scale with a venue," he said.
In addition to weddings, they envision The Pines hosting other events such as family reunions, corporate retreats and Christmas parties.
"I think the thing that kind of sets The Pines apart is that you're not just renting the venue. You're renting the entire property," Mikkonen said.
Koenig said they hope to establish a partnership with a local bus company, but that it's also close enough to Fargo that Uber and Lyft drivers will be available as well.
For more information or to book an event, visit www.thepinesvenue.com.
Handmade and well-made
The new retail showroom is also a big step for the business partners. Until now, they mainly did business by appointment or out of temporary pop-up shops.
"This is the first time people have been able to walk in and buy stuff off the floor," Bruckbauer said.
Filled with their custom reclaimed wood tables, benches, sliding doors, paneling, mantels and more, the store also provides the perfect backdrop for designers to meet with clients.
Mikkonen said custom orders make up 85 percent of their business.
There will be a designer on hand at all times to discuss potential projects.
The store also carries what Koenig described as products that complement their pieces, such as chairs, stools, light fixtures, vases, planters and pottery.
Mikkonen explained that the products they source meet Grain Designs' "handmade/well-made" philosophy.
A grand opening celebration for the retail store will be held from 4 to 9 p.m. Thursday, July 19. The event will feature complimentary drinks and appetizers, yard games and giveaways every hour.
If You Go:
What: Grain Designs grand opening celebration
Where: 3265 45th St. S., Fargo
When: 4 to 9 p.m. Thursday, July 19
Contact: (701) 356-6608