Meet the Staff
Maria comes from an Italian family where she learned to cook by watching her parents and grandmother. By the age of 12, Maria started working in the food business with her father, who owned various delis, snack bars and restaurants through the years. She learned hands-on about food safety, organization and service to the public. At 16, she worked at a busy Italian restaurant where she learned serving skills. Although she spent many years working in the administrative field, she continued working catered events with her father and an event service company in her spare time. In 2011, she decided to leave the office and go into her own homemade cookie baking business full time. Maybe you tasted one of Maria’s Marvels? As a self-proclaimed ‘people person,’ she missed working with people and came to the Bykenhulle House where she can continue to delight people with her homemade cooking and service-oriented personality. Maria is dedicated to making your stay at the Bykenhulle House exceptional.
From a very young age, Melissa was a permanent fixture in the service industry. Tagging along with her mother to the restaurants she has worked at over the years; to having her toddler birthday parties at her Dad’s bars. It was no surprise that by fourteen, she began her own series of restaurant adventures: To waiting tables at the most interesting places like Crawdaddys, where one step through the door and you’re in a whole new world of Bluegrass music and Louisiana’s’ Bayou, to managing an Irish family’s legacy, where Irish Step Dancers and Bagpipers often accompany your Shepherds Pie and Bangers and Mash. While Melissa fulfilled her lifelong goal of completing a Masters in Education, her heart has always been in the Customer Service Industry. She loves people and has made lifelong friends while sitting alongside them planning their family memories, as an Event Planner. She has always loved to cook. Spending many a Sunday morning peeling and crushing her own tomatoes for Sunday gravy, listening to Frank Sinatra as the house is filled with delectable aroma of fried meatballs and homecooking, the kitchen has always been her happy place. Few things come close to the joy of whipping up fresh baked cookies and muffins, apron around her waist covered in a light dusting of cocoa and sugar, but bidding farewell to a smiling guest at the Bykenhulle House is certainly up there!
Events Manager and Marketing & Social Media Director
Kimberly is a lifelong resident of this beautiful Hudson Valley region, where there is never a shortage of things to do. Between the restaurants, museums, historical homes and revolving door of events, every day here is a new experience, and she LOVES to explore them all! After graduating from the State University of New York at New Paltz with her degree in Photography and Art History, Kimberly fell into wedding photography for several years. While she adored meeting couples, exploring new venues, and capturing a day full of love, she knew wedding photography wasn’t her true passion. Kimberly took a position with a Hudson Valley jewelry company and was thrown into the marketing department when her manager left the company. From this moment, she was able to combine her love of photography, while learning what her true calling was; Marketing & Social Media Management.
After several years, job after job, she was always utilizing her skills and growing, but never fully satisfied with her position. Then, remembering she photographed a wedding at the Bykenhulle House, she reached out to them and before she knew it, she was taking on their events, marketing, and social media. Kimberly finally feels at home and is happy being able to combine her love and talent of photography and meeting new people, with her passion for marketing.
Kimberly takes pride in meeting each and every person who walks thru our door. She loves to talk to people about their visit to the Hudson Valley, what their dream wedding is, giving them ideas on places to go and things to do, and always treating everyone as a part of our family. With almost 10 years in the event industry, she understands all aspects of any event and can guide anyone into hosting the event of their dreams while taking most of the stress away from the process. She believes, especially for weddings, that this should be a fun process, and does whatever she can to make sure the client feels the same way.
When she’s not busy taking running around here, Kimberly loves to explore our region, network with other local businesses, and renovate her chalet home in the woods with her boyfriend Danny and three dogs; Angus, Mia & Taco. Photo by White Poppy Weddings.