718 Venue on Caroline Street is a gorgeous event space, most commonly used for weddings and rehearsal dinners. Able to fit 120 guests (standing, for seating it is around 80), 718 has a beautiful “New York glam” that attendees always admire and appreciate. For co-owner Beth Black, 718 Venue is all about the customer experience.
718 Venue officially opened in 2017, and was bought by Black and her business partner, Joy Crump, in 2021. When Black and Crump initially walked into the venue, the beauty of the space literally took their breath away. Black recalls that, as they set up the food in the back of 718 to cater an event, she said to Crump, “This should be our place.”
“I had never seen anything like it in Fredericksburg,” Black said. “It was so gorgeous.”
At the end of 2020, Black communicated with Michael Colangelo, the original owner of 718, about taking over the space. Colangelo built 718 in honor of his family, which Black said is exemplified beautifully, from the ceiling to the artwork. Since Black and Crump bought 718, they have hosted countless events including business seminars, non-profit functions, breakfast meetings, rehearsal dinners, and much more.
“It’s 1600 square feet of whatever you want it to be,” Black said.
Black loves being able to be part of someone’s day of celebration, from weddings to celebrations of life. She makes sure to be at every event, and is always working to set up and implement them.
In addition to running 718 Venue, Black and Crump are also co-owners of Foode & Mercantile, a revered restaurant in Fredericksburg. Crump was recently awarded as a semi-finalist for the prestigious James Beard Foundation “Best Chef” award. According to Black, this honor is a wonderful reflection of Crump’s work, as well as their phenomenal team. She believes this honor exemplifies their work at both Foode and 718.
Black said that selling 718 as an event space is synonymous with selling the destination of Fredericksburg. She encourages wedding parties to take pictures at Riverfront Park, and tells them to utilize the businesses on the 700 block of Caroline Street that she calls “Wedding Way;” these businesses include Duly Noted, Heather Boutique, and Centerpiece Boutique.
“I think we’re trying to sell the entire package,” Black said. “We’re one small part of a really cool vibe in downtown.”
If you want to reserve 718 for an event, Black recommends booking at least a year out. According to her, what sets 718 apart from other event spaces in Fredericksburg is the “boutique experience.” 718 is not meant for a wedding of 200-300 people, but Black believes the space is more intimate and special. With caterers such as Foode, she said that even the meals can be intimate (and, knowing the quality of Foode, delicious).
The passion of Black’s and Crump’s work is on full display at 718 Venue, and is a stunning example of the hospitality of Fredericksburg. 718 Venue is located at 718 Caroline Street. Follow them on Facebook.