APPLETON — Despite trying unsuccessfully for nearly a year to find a new operator after the death of owner Ken Vandeyacht, the popular Appleton banquet hall has announced it will close.

In a post Tuesday to the Grand Meridian Facebook page, the Vandeyacht family said it plans to close permanently on Dec. 29, 2023.

For those with events scheduled in 2024, management said they will reach out in the coming weeks to return deposits.

According to the Grand Meridian’s post, Vandeyacht’s family, alongside Grand Meridian staff, have worked to find a solution for the future of the Grand Meridian.

“It became apparent to us during this journey that we were not going to be able to find someone willing to continue to run the business as a banquet facility. Because of this, we made the very difficult decision to allow a non-banquet entity to purchase the Grand Meridian property,” read the post.

“Ken’s passing was certainly unexpected and we are regretful for the inconvenience this announcement causes our guests. Please do not take this disappointment out on the Grand Meridian staff – this was a business decision made by Ken’s family. Our staff are grieving his loss and this change in operations, too. Please treat them with kindness during this transition,” read the post.

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By Dan Plutchak

Dan Plutchak, born and raised in Kaukauna, is cofounder of Kaukauna Community News.