Blue Heron Catering, Inc. has been serving the Oakland community for 30 years since their establishment in 1988. They cater for a variety of events in the community, including programs for non-profits, weddings, corporate events, socials, and basically anything you can think of that involves food. You can catch them serving at local venues such as the Chabot Space and Science Center and Fox Theater, among others!
Debbie Pfisterer’s inspiration for starting a catering company came to her while she was attending college at CSU East Bay for Business Administration and had classes with presentations about small businesses. She also came from a family that loved to cook, and carried that energy with her since she would cook and bake for her loved ones in her free time. After being inspired by her first job at a bakery, and then a food broker, her family, and her passion for sharing delicious food, Debbie set off on her journey to start her very own catering company.
The loan from Main Street Launch helped Blue Heron Catering stabilize as a business and greatly improved cash flow for the company. Along with that, the loan also helped them fund a new van, which they named “Cinderella,” fittingly with their other vans named “Ariel” and “Snow White,” which was inspired by her 3 year old granddaughter. Debbie stated, “Adding Cinderella to our fleet helped us serve more clients and grow our business.”
“Getting a loan from Main Street Launch was a learning process–time was one of the main constraints, but everything came together in the end,” Debbie remarked. She offers advice for aspiring entrepreneurs: “The better team of people you work with, the better your business will become.”
Debbie strongly believes in supporting local, and this translates into the philosophy of Blue Heron Catering. Her company’s mission carries values of environmental sustainability and women empowerment, along with striving to purchase from as many local vendors for food supplies when possible. She appreciates Main Street Launch’s support for local small businesses, particularly in the Oakland area.
One of Debbie’s personal favorite recent catering jobs was for the 50th anniversary of the Oakland A’s. “It was such an honor to serve them, since I’ve been a long-time fan,” Debbie commented. During the reception, she had the opportunity to meet the players and see a plethora of artistically unique elephant mascot statues similar to the ones scattered around many parts of the city of Oakland today.
Debbie also partners closely with Tanya Holland from Brown Sugar Kitchen, another one of Main Street Launch’s clients, to offer catering services with Tanya’s recipes. Learn more about their collaboration here.
Blue Heron Catering has recently moved into West Oakland and is now located at 3303 San Pablo Ave. Be sure to connect with them the next time you host an event! Blue Heron’s also has a new community giveback program where clients have a chance to choose to give back to a local charity in Oakland. Check it out here: https://www.blueheroncatering.com/