ANDERSON — Lisa Singleton-Roberts grew up in the city and said it was a natural decision for her to move back and open a business in her hometown.
“I’m living my dream at age 48,” Singleton-Roberts said.
That dream was to open Toscana Event Centre, 1314 Broadway, and offer a unique venue for parties in Anderson.
Singleton-Roberts, a certified wedding and event planner for about 10 years, said she was working in Noblesville when she decided to open her business.
“Like a lot of people, I lost my job,” Singleton-Roberts said.
That crucial moment in her life spurred the idea of opening the Centre. She said within the next six months she plans to expand her business and open a bistro.
“I think if you have something of value in Anderson, people will come to it,” Singleton-Roberts said.
In a way, that is already happening for Singleton-Roberts. On Sunday, the Centre will host a free Breaking Bad event that is open to the public. Singleton-Roberts said baldmove.com, a podcasting company out of the greater Indianapolis area, contacted her in September about holding a season finale event for the television program.
She said she is looking forward to Sunday’s event, when more people will be able to see the renovations that have been made.
Singleton-Roberts said the architecture of her building creates a “homey” feeling and she has capitalized on that atmosphere with an Italian flair that has been well received. Singleton-Roberts admits she has never visited Toscana, but her family is planning to take her there for her 50th birthday.
“It has a neutral outdoorsy feeling,” Singleton-Roberts said. “It doesn’t feel commercial and bland. I want people to feel like they are hosting a party from their home. It doesn’t feel sterile.”
The building has been the site of several ventures, including a former fire station and private residences, she said. Singleton-Roberts has since converted the rooms into seating for about 150 people.
Since she has opened the Centre, Singleton-Roberts said that in addition to the baby showers and events that have been booked, she has had many visitors stop in to inquire about the Centre.
“I love it because people will come through and everyone has a story to share about when it was a detail shop or when it was a fire station or when someone lived here,” she said. “It’s neat the different memories people have of the building.”
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Free Breaking Bad party The Toscana Event Centre is hosting a free Breaking Bad party that is open to the public at 8 p.m. on Sunday. The finale episode of Breaking Bad will be aired live on a large screen and there will be a podcast hosted by baldmove.com with audience participation opportunities following the show. Breaking Bad themed items will be given away during the event, and beer, wine, soda and snacks will be available. For more information, visit http://www.facebook.com/baldmove/events.