Exclusive provider for private events, including rooftop
By Mark Frost, Chronicle Editor
Mazzone Catering — the Capital Region’s highest-profile restaurateur and events caterer — has become the exclusive provider for private events at the Courtyard Marriott in Lake George.
The deal was celebrated with a ribbon-cutting and catered function last Thursday at the Marriott, newly built by Lake George developer Dave Kenny and his partners.
Angelo Mazzone, Mazzone Catering’s 64-year-old founder, spoke briefly. He said Mr. Kenny “pursued me for a long time to come to Lake George — like forever. We’re happy and we think we’re gonna do great things.”
Mr. Kenny, who spoke even more briefly, said his sole goal is to advance the “Lake George 365” year-round tourism campaign “and prove that it can work.”
Sean Willcoxon, Mazzone Hospitality’s Chief Operating Officer, said he had been pushing for years for Mazzone to establish a presence in Lake George and north of Saratoga.
Mr. Willcoxon said that he was in Lake George for Mazzone Catering running the restaurant at Erlowest for the first few years after Dave Kenny opened it, but that it was always Mr. Kenny’s plan to install his own chef and crew to run the Erlowest restaurant long-term.
He said Mr. Kenny will also operate the small regular restaurant at the Marriott. Mazzone will handle special events — weddings, business meetings and the like.
On Wednesday, Aug. 16, for instance, the Lake George Music Festival will present a chamber music concert at what it touts as “the highest, and newest point in Lake George Village — atop the new Marriott Hotel’s “Roof Top Terrace,” with cash bar and light hors d’oeuvres.
For corporate meetings, Mr. Willcoxon said they can handle up to 250 people at the Marriott, for weddings 200 to 210.
What finally triggered Mazzone’s decision to establish an ongoing Lake George presence, said Mr. Willcoxon, was insistence by a customer looking to book a party that take place at Lake George.
Mr. Mazzone says the company operates on the philosophy that “the answer is yes. What’s the question?” He quips that sometimes “it’s gotten us in a lot of trouble.”
Mr. Mazzone opened his catering business in 1980. He said he grew up on Long Island and started working in restaurants as a youth. “My grandfather owned a pizza place.”
He said he came to the Capital District initially to attend Hudson Valley Community College as a wrestler. When that didn’t work out, he said he went to Schenectady Community College’s culinary program.
Ms. Gibson, who will manage Mazzone’s operation at the Marriott, graduated from Schenectady Community College culinary, after graduating from Troy High School.
Ms. Gibson then worked in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, eventually running the food service in the arena where the Milwaukee Bucks baseball team plays, said Mr. Willcoxon.
He’s a graduate of Johnson & Wales University and notes Mr. Mazzone is his uncle.