When we started looking for a reception venue we knew we needed someplace with a capacity of around 300 people, open catering, and reasonably priced. This criteria greatly reduced the number of options we had, which made our choice easier.
The first place we looked was the Garvey Center, which is located in downtown Wichita. The building was meaningful to us because our Sadie Hawkins dance was there freshman and junior year and was the location of our first dance (aww!). The banquet facilities are located in the lowest level.
We liked the location and the fact that we'd have the option to pay $350 extra and decorate on Friday. Also, the requirements for cleanup at the Garvey Center wouldn't require as much effort (since this will likely be done by our families).
FSIL and me at their reception
Sorry for the dark background - Those were the best pictures I could find of the banquet room
There were a few things we didn't like. The room is split up into a couple different areas. The front "entry" area would have to be used for tables (because of the number of guests we expect) and we didn't like that people would be separated from everything. On top of that, we would be pushing capacity to begin with. Lastly, this was the venue for David's brother's wedding reception, as you can see in the pictures above, so several of the guests (particularly relatives) at their wedding would be at our's and I think that kind of bothered David.
So, it was off to look at more options and see if we could find a better fit!