Monarch Gets New Life as an Event Center | Business

MONTICELLO – In early 2021, Matt and Sarah Miller had a magnificent building that was no longer used as a restaurant. Meanwhile, Nelson’s Catering was looking for a third location for the event.

And just like chocolate meets peanut butter, it’s a match made in heaven that led to the Monarch Event Center, which is located in the former Monarch Brewing Co. at 212 S. Independence St. in Monticello. .

“We’re thrilled to be using the building again,” said Matt Miller, who has gone from restaurant owner to owner.

At the other end of the lease is Nelson’s Catering, a long-time Springfield company that also has exclusive rights to the premises of Laborer’s International Union Hall in Champaign and the Parke Regency Conference Center in Bloomington.

As soon as Events and Sales Manager Ashley Oare visited the Monarch, she knew it was a perfect fit.

“We came on tour and hopped around the square. It is such a beautiful space. We thought it would be a great opportunity to bring our food and our services and show them what we have, and let Monticello have a nice place for events, ”said Oare.

The Millers spent about two years renovating the old United Methodist Church building, opening the Monarch Brewery in 2017. The restaurant paved the way when COVID started, but has been closed for more than a year, said. Miller said.

The event center is a third chapter for the historic building from 1911, which was the United Methodist Church of Monticello until the congregation moved to a new home about five years ago.

Miller is happy that it can be used once again for people to celebrate milestones.

“To bring events and people from our community back to this building and celebrate weddings and reunions, whatever – just to see the building being used again in the community is a good thing,” Miller said.

Oare said Nelson’s can host weddings, galas, birthday parties – just about any social event for up to 120 people – both formal and casual.

“We can be as formal and as backyard barbecue as we need to be, and can do everything in between,” Oare said.

The new classroom wing of the old church houses the commercial offices of Sarah Miller’s company, AgCreate.

More information

All reservations for the Monarch Event Center are made through Nelson’s Catering. For more information, visit

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