OUR TEAM

Ben Naylor

Co-Owner

Ben hasn’t met a site yet that he can’t successfully put a tent on! Our technical guru of tents, Ben gained lots of practical know-how while growing up on a farm in Vermont, and later earned a degree in engineering. He helped one of the largest tent companies in the Unites States design a new line of tents, and has installed tents, staging, flooring, and more in a variety of cities and for an array of clients, including AT&T, New York Fashion Week, Lindt Chocolate, and Bar Harbor Yacht Club, as well as for hundreds of weddings and family events in the Berkshires. A mechanical expert, Ben can fix almost any machine, and has the uncanny ability to problem-solve the most challenging sites.

 

Ben lives in the Williamstown area, and when weather and work allow, you can find him on his mountain bike on the gnarliest trails, or whizzing down the slopes of a local ski area with friends and family.

Katherine Lockridge

Co-Owner

The consummate connector, Kat feels most rewarded when helping individuals and event planners find the exact rental items and services they need. This philosophy also extends to the local Berkshire community, where Kat spends time advising on boards, including for 1Berkshire and The Center for Environmental Technology. She also founded the Berkshire Wedding Tour, to help draw attention to the Berkshires as a destination wedding location.

 

Kat earned a degree in natural resource management, with a minor in business and psychology. As a ranger in Yellowstone National Park in 1988, the year of the historic wildfires, she got her first taste of in-depth customer service when she realized she needed to offer friendly, consistent guidance to the park’s many concerned visitors.

 

She now applies those skills to her work at Classical Tents, where she helps brides, grooms, families, and event planners design their ultimate event. The queen of linens, Kat loves fabric and each year sources an ever-expanding line of fine linens—organza, bengaline, linen, satin, twill—for her customers.

 

Kat lives in Lee, and loves the local hiking trails and wonderful live arts and music selections that the Berkshires has to offer. Kat is always honing her skills in the kitchen and loves to cook and bake.

Trevor Hotchkin

Operations Manager

One of Classical Tents’ longest-standing team members, Trevor has been providing top-shelf management since 2000. Currently our operations manager, he rose through the ranks, first as a truck packer and then as a crew chief, thanks to his depth of knowledge, work ethic, friendly nature, and ability to stay calm under the pressure of unexpected challenges. Trevor has nearly two decades’ worth of experience in rental management and customer service via his work at Classical Tents, and with his own event initiative company, Berkshire Shenanigans.

 

Trevor lives in Pittsfield with his wife, Michele, and his son. In his free time, he enjoys dipping his kayak into local waters, taking a road trip to New Hampshire to visit his parents, meeting new people, and spending time with friends.

Michele Hotchkin

Senior Rental Coordinator

Brides, caterers, and corporate event planners have come to rely on Michele’s friendliness, professionalism, and exceptional organizational skills. A natural social planner, she enjoys considering the finer details and helping clients select items that will transform their ideas from a vision into a once-in-a-lifetime event.

 

A native of Berkshire County and a resident of Pittsfield, Michele joined the Classical Tents team in 2001. With her husband, Trevor, whom she met at Classical Tents, she also founded Berkshire Shenanigans, an event initiative company that has helped plan and execute events, including cocktail parties, dance parties, and corporate fund-raisers, for up to 400 people. In her off hours, Michele loves photography, traveling, and scrapbooking.

Matt Meunier

Warehouse Supervisor

Matt just transitioned to being the Classical Tents Vinyl Room Manger after a few years of working as a Crew Chief.

 

Many years ago Matt worked at Classical Tents until he and his wife decided to relocate to Florida. While there he worked in the party rental business. In 2017 he returned to the Berkshires and we were very happy to rehire him.

 

Matt is thoughtful and cares about the work he does. He invests time in thinking through the work he is doing.

 

Hobbies for Matt include golf, skiing, and he loves a bottle of good whiskey! You might see Matt flying past you at a local ski area in the Berkshires.

Markes Rodriguez

Dish Room Supervisor

Markes has been the dish room supervisor since 2015 and his upbeat spirit is infectious. We often see Markes bopping to Hip Hop, pop, or rock music as he does his work.

 

Markes grew up, as a teen, living in Brooklyn, NY and Puerto Rico. He misses Puerto Rico and rarely gets there these days as he has two beautiful daughters who keep him busy in the Berkshires. What he loved about living in Puerto Rico was the people’s , ‘Can do’ spirit despite adversity. He misses his family quite a bit too.

 

Hobbies for Markes include fishing and Basketball. His favorite food is Italian.

Wayne Palmer

Daily Production Supervisor

Wayne has been a Crew Chief at Classical Tents since 2014. Wayne is quiet most of the time unless he has something important to say! We appreciate Wayne’s steadiness , promptness and hard work.

 

Wayne grew up in Lee, Ma and lives there now with his family and two dogs ( but they are part of the family ). His dogs are American Bullies.

 

The Viking way of thinking has always appealed to Wayne because they had to work for what they wanted and needed; there were no hand outs.

 

Wayne loves pizza and his favorite pizza place is on Cape Cod. He is a tinkerer and loves to work on mechanical things like engines.

Win Rutledge

Personnel Manager

Originally from Lenox, Win is a classically trained chef who worked herself out of the Berkshires by the time that she was 23. Seeking to learn as much as she could, she landed in Boston, where she spent over 30 years working for the best companies that she could find or develop, honing her skills as a chef, a senior manager and the co-owner of 2 award winning catering companies. Win moved back to the Berkshires several years ago, and split her time between Lenox and Boston until the spring of 2017, when she stopped her wanderings and joined the team of Classical Tents and Party Goods, coming full circle around on her quest for excellence!

 

Win lives in Lenox with her great Pyrenees, 2 cats and a lot of gardens. She, along with her twin brother founded a trust and purchased the house that they grew up in, so you can usually find her building or fixing something there, until time and weather allow her to flit up to her cabin on the shores of New Brunswick, where she spends her days hiking, kayaking, reading, building or fixing something else!

Joe Rundin

Warehouse supervisor

In 2021, Joe moved from his home state of Maine to the Berkshires with his girlfriend, now fiancé.

 

Joe obtained a degree in Mechanical Engineering in Boston. From there he moved back to Maine to work in children’s crisis care. Joe started working at Classical Tents two weeks after moving to the Berkshires. Porter the dog was a big draw for Joe when he interviewed at Classical Tents in 2021 for a summer gig. Joe shared that the people who work at Classical Tents greatly influenced him to take the year round job he was offered shortly after starting.

 

Reading, hiking, painting and scheming fill Joe’s off time from work. The scheming mostly involved planning Joe’s recent surprise proposal to his fiancé. We can’t wait to see what his wedding will entail!

 

Joe likes the mix of a rural setting offered in the Berkshires, combined with culture.

Liz Chapman

Rental Coordinator

We were excited to have Liz join our staff in 2022 as a new Rental Coordinator. After attending college in Pennsylvania, where she majored in Fashion Merchandising and Law, Liz returned to the Berkshires. It’s a great place to live if you enjoy theater as much as Liz does!

 

During High school and college, Liz performed in theater, with roles in Grease, Shrek the Musical, Cats and more. Liz is also a singer. If you find the local karaoke spot you might find Liz standing there belting it out on a microphone.

 

To quote Liz, she has, ” Been to Disney World more times than an adult woman should have been.” She enjoys attending trade shows and looks forward to attending the ARA show in winter 2023 (in Orlando, so look for her at Disney?!). Trade shows help Liz learn about the scope of the industry she is working in, from small to big.

 

Working as a Rental Coordinator has introduced Liz to the many possibilities in the Berkshires regarding venue, caterers, florists and event planners. She has come to know some of the finest service providers the Berkshires has to offer in just a short time.

Ruthie McDonald

Sales & Marketing Coordinator

Ruthie was hired as the Sales & Marketing Coordinator at Classical Tents in the spring of 2022. She currently manages the company’s social media accounts, handles the branding, and has begun the detailed process of overseeing the planning and development of a new website for the company—plus so much more.

 

Ruthie’s background includes working for years as an event planner where she loved connecting with people she worked for and with. After 10 years of owning her own company, it was time for Ruthie to tailor her hours to the needs of her family. She then moved on to work for a marketing and design agency where she spent the last 10 years. Ruthie shares that her role at Classical Tents is like the perfect marriage between the wedding world and graphic design/marketing.

 

In her downtime, Ruthie tends to her perennial gardens ( and veggies too ), enjoys hiking and walking, antiquing and adventures with her family. Ruthie loves being out in nature.

 

You may meet Ruthie at an event or a site visit, please do say hello!

Porter

Loveable Mascot

Our customers seem to love being greeted by Porter when arriving to our offices and one could argue that he is the most lovable team member we have here at Classical Tents! Porter is originally from the Berkshires and really appreciates all the area has to offer. He loves to go for long walks in the woods, visiting job sites with his dad Trevor and playing with new friends he meets along the way. He’s always sniffing out the best local spots to go for a run and has made it his personal mission to visit every historical home in the Berkshires.