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Mobile cantina

PourHorse Cantina owner, Wyatt Paul, and friend, Alycia Bair, explain PourHorse services and pricing to Jessica Holland at a bridal show in early January. Jessica Holland and Joseph Yaple will wed on June 27.

Wyatt Paul’s favorite events are weddings.

“Everybody is happy and I get to be a part of that,” said Paul, who is the owner of PourHorse Mobile Cantina and Libations, a beverage caterer that specializes in weddings and outdoor events.

Paul said he works closely with his customers to ensure everything on their big day is just right.

“It’s someone’s best day of their life. We really try hard to go the extra mile to meet that,” he said. “We provide bartenders and basic drink catering -- whether it’s alcohol, coffee, hot chocolate, or bloody marys – there’s really nothing we can’t do.”

Paul said friends and family in Klamath Falls helped him get his business off the ground, and the mobile cantina now offers three service packages: basic, advanced, and “the works,” which includes bartending services from a single horse trailer. Paul said the trailer service package can serve more than 300 people.

Paul grew up in Klamath Falls and graduated from Mazama High School in 2010. He founded the PourHorse in 2016, then enrolled at Klamath Community College in spring 2017 to bolster his business acumen. Courses in the program include marketing, social media, accounting, and business law.

“I was lucky to link up with some awesome counselors, and they laid out a plan for all the classes I needed to take to get a business marketing degree as quickly as possible,” he said. “The classes are very helpful when it comes to being a ‘little guy’ starting a business.

“Business law helped me tremendously in understanding different types of contracts. It was a great resource to have, he added.

Dennis Oden, who instructs KCC’s business law course, explained that his course is designed to help students understand the foundational concepts of business law.

“I try to provide students with knowledge about issues they will face on a day-to-day basis, whether they are employees or managers,” Oden said.

Paul will graduate in June with an Associate of Applied Science in Business Administration, emphasis in marketing.

Paul attributes much of the PourHorse’s success to help he has received from Reba VanAcker at the KCC Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in downtown Klamath Falls.

“She’s like my ‘business mom,’ ” he said. “I’m extremely thankful to have some of her time.”

According to VanAcker, the SBDC provides no-cost advising to clients in any stage of their journey, whether they are just starting up or if they have an existing business.

“My goal is to meet the client where he or she is,” VanAcker said. “If they are not in business yet, we can help with ideas, market research and feasibility. If they are an existing business we can assist with business plans, a finance package, cash flow, marketing, human resource advice or whatever they need.

VanAcker noted that although mobile beverage service is not new to Klamath Falls, the trailer cantina concept is a horse of a different color.

“Wyatt is a go-getter. He is not afraid to work hard,” VanAcker said. “Some people make excuses for not being able to get things done. Wyatt gets things done.”

Paul said VanAcker has been instrumental in building his business.

“There’s so much that goes into pour cost for a beer or per drink, and she helped break all that down,” he said.

Paul noted that July and August are popular months for weddings. He already has five weddings booked for next summer. He suggests clients reserve their date at least six months in advance.

“We’ll go anywhere as long as it’s in Oregon,” he said.

Paul’s advice to aspiring entrepreneurs is simple:

“If you truly like what you’re doing, go 110 percent into it. Don’t worry about all the distractions. Just focus and get it done.”

Gerry OBrien, Editor