Tips for Choosing a Wedding / Reception Venue
“Location, Location, Location.” That mantra, generally associated with buying and selling real estate, can applied to a number of circumstances, but perhaps not one quite so sentimental as your wedding day. While a bride may have envisioned her perfect day since she was a little girl, the reality is bringing the fairy tale to life entails planning down to the “Nth” degree. And choosing a venue for the Big Day is at the very foundation of planning and requires keeping a few things in mind to ensure your idyllic setting is suitable for hosting the wedding of one’s dreams.
- The geographic location is important when narrowing down and selecting a venue. Is the location easy to find? How far is it from the nearest airport? If a number of guests are driving, will there be ample parking? And does it have or is it near accommodations for your out-of-town guests? The matter of logistics is important as it may fall on the bridal couple and their families to provide transportation and/or lodging for some of their out-of-town guests to and from the locale.
- It’s not just the geographic location, but also the venue’s physical attributes, that must be considered when deciding on a site. Whether it is to be casual or elegant, indoors or outdoors, the venue should have an atmosphere that not only jibes with your vibe but can meet the realities inherent to throwing a party. It may be a barn, but perhaps you want your vision of rustic to feature electricity. It may be a ballroom, but does it have the personality of a mall bathroom? Perhaps you envision dancing under the stars, but is there an adequate dance floor for dressy high heels or is a grassy lawn under bare feet more your style? Determine early the feel you want to impart, as the theme will thread through almost every aspect of your wedding ceremony and reception. Executing a feel can be as detailed as you are willing to go within the parameters that your venue allows.
- Consider, too, whether the site is a full-service venue, meaning it is good-to-go from linens to chairs, or if it will require you to secure additional vendors for decorations, lighting, tables and seating, or tents if outdoors. Further, does the site have kitchen or bar facilities and can it accommodate caterers? And ask about restrictions, from burning candles to moving furniture to serving alcohol.
- Do you plan a small, intimate affair or will your guest list be in the double digits? It goes without saying that the venue be able to accommodate the number of guests you plan to invite. Keep this in mind even if you are having an outdoor ceremony; heaven forbid the weather does not cooperate on your big day. Can the venue sufficiently accommodate your guests should an outdoor ceremony become an indoor event?
- Arm yourself with information, make lists and conduct site visits. Ask questions. Ask lots of questions. When you’ve narrowed your choices down, determine availability and get the cost in writing. Then let the fun of bringing your vision to fruition begin.
Snowden House, with its historic building and idyllic lakeside setting, is the Memphis area’s premiere wedding venue. From ceremony to reception, we boast amenities for accommodating parties of varying sizes for both indoor and outdoor catered events. Our rural setting on Horseshoe Lake in Eastern Arkansas belies the accessibility to a major airport, hotels and restaurants. Visit us and let us help you make your dream day a reality.