By Randy Fogg
INMAN—With the guidelines Gov. Laura Kelly has set for opening back up the state because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Kat Heller, owner of the La Torre Events Venue, will be able to keep her first Pizza Night event.
Pizza Night will take place from 6 to 8 p.m., on Saturday, May 30, at La Torre, which is located at 158 Chisholm Road, in rural Inman.
“I’ve had to cancel seven or eight events so far because of the stipulations,” Heller said.
Heller said she was ready to have an event at the venue. She noted the pizza party will be limited to 25 people, since she has a staff of five working the event.
Attendees must purchase a ticket to the event in advance. Heller can be reached through the La Torre Facebook page, or she can be reached at 316-833-1937.
Customers will be served salad and pizza cooked in a wood-burning oven. Attendees will be able to bring their own adult beverages, and tea and water will also be available.
“People are allowed to wander around the property,” Heller said. “I have plenty of space on my property to spread everyone out.”
La Torre hosts a variety of events, including weddings, anniversaries, dinner parties, family gatherings, reunions and other themed events. The house was built in 2001 by the previous owners and designed to look like an historic Italian villa. The property includes several acres of gardens, and it is considered an outdoor venue.
Heller noted she hosted her first pizza party last September, and it went extremely well. She had a Halloween-themed event in October and would like to do it again this year.
After having to cancel the November pizza party, she was planning to start it back up again in May and continue having them monthly until this November.
She noted she had to schedule the pizza parties around the other events taking place at La Torre
“It takes anywhere from two to four hours to get the pizza oven ready,” Heller said. “The pizzas only take 1-1/2 to 2 minutes to cook.”
She added they will keep making pizzas until they run out of dough or everyone is full.
For the party, six varieties of pizzas will be served. Along with the usual meats—pepperoni, beef and sausage—there are also vegan pizzas.
Since she has been able to host events, Heller has started preparing dinners—mainly casseroles—for people. She freezes the food.
“We’ve done all kinds of stuff,” Heller noted. “I’m not completely out of luck.”
Most of her meals have been for families in Inman, McPherson and Hutchinson. She has even had a customer from Wichita.
People have come out to pick up the meals, and she has delivered for others.
“It’s a good way for people to get homemade food,” she added. “I make from scratch as much as I can.
“The meals have gone real well,” Heller said. “I think I will continue to do it even when we get back to our new normal.”