- Real Estate
- Food & Drink
Nov. 13, 2019
This paid piece is sponsored by Ideal Wedding & Events.
It’s five days before the opening gala at Avera on Louise, and Ideal Wedding & Events already has arrived.
Facing a classic South Dakota wind, the team begins installing a massive tent that ultimately will host an outdoor concert during the celebration.
Inside, a custom-designed bar and other furnishings from Ideal will support a 800-person crowd.
In many ways, this is just another week for the fast-growing business, which is finding a niche in offering a level of rental items unique to the Sioux Falls area and beyond.
“We do business in five states and are seeing continually year-over-year increases,” said Blake Dede, who bought the business nearly 20 years ago.
“It’s important to us that we’re always growing, always improving in our skill sets in the services we offer. We keep a close ear to what the industry is doing on a national level, and we do our best to bring those services to our area.”
Ideal Wedding & Events has grown fast enough that it’s out of space. A new 13,000-square-foot headquarters is under construction in the Bakker Landing development just off the Tea exit.
“We’re really excited to be putting down roots in Tea,” Dede said. “It’s developing fast, and I really liked having access to the interstate and being just outside the city limits.”
It’s a significant move for the business, which began as Ideal Hardware in 1942. Founder Adolph Hansen started it as a lawnmower maintenance business from his home, calling it Hansen Lawn Mower, and moved it to 321 W. 12th St. a few years later, where it stood for 55 years.
Photo courtesy of greetingsfromsiouxfalls.com
In 1947, it was renamed Ideal Hardware. Adolph’s wife, Florence, managed the hardware end of the business while Adolph worked on mowers. Florence diversified the business into wedding supplies and cake decorating items, painting the building with distinctive polka dots.
The two businesses split years ago, and the Hansens’ son, Gordon, offered to sell the wedding and party side of it to Dede.
“He asked me several times and finally caught me on the right day,” said Dede, who was living in Omaha at the time and looking to return to Sioux Falls.
“We downsized it a little bit and moved it to a retail center on Shirley Avenue, where we’ve been for the last 17 years.”
While it started as wedding-related rental and retail items, Dede used his background in construction and mechanics to offer more.
“I found myself getting a little creative,” he said. “Now, we do a lot of custom design and offer a lot of bespoke elements that bring uniqueness to an event. We can build it, and customers don’t have to go somewhere else to source it.”
Projects include building finished floors for under tents, custom bars, fencing and farm-style picnic tables. At the recent Sanford International, Ideal built custom pieces ranging from 5-foot-tall letters and custom furnishings for “The Ranch” dining, entertainment and viewing area.
“We also use CAD software to lay out an event space, so clients can envision how everything will look and fit together,” Dede said. “We’re not just dropping off a bunch of chairs. It’s beginning-to-end planning, and if we don’t have something, we will source it or build for the client.”
Ideal still sells wedding-related items and has its original cake department.
Other new additions include equipment to keep rental items as clean as possible.
“The quality of our product is really important to us. We’ve put in a large tent-washing machine that washes our canvas to keep the panels in top condition and maintain their cleanliness, we have chair-washing machines and a complete commercial laundry with a 12-foot flatwork iron to iron all our linens and hang them. It’s quite the spectacle” Dede said.
While Ideal is waiting for its new building to be done late this year, it’s temporarily located at 2707 S. Carolyn Ave.
The new building will be a showcase for Ideal’s work, including highlighting its custom lighting on the exterior and a full design center featuring over 600 different linen colors and fabrics.
“Customers can walk in, pull any color of linen they want, pull the china and build whatever setting they want to build,” Dede said. “People like to be hands-on, and we want to give them the ability to do that.”
The new space also will give Ideal’s 30 employees some much-needed work space and help kick off a major new Tea development with an eye-catching new building, he added.
“With a 32-foot ceiling height, it’s going to look really grand when you come up to it. With all the exterior finishes, it should be a really nice place to come to, and we can’t wait for people to experience it.”
It does business in five states and keeps growing. Now, Ideal Wedding & Events will have a new home for its expanding company.