Hello all! We just got engaged and want to nail down our venue for July 2018.
We just moved to a new state (Montana) and have decided to have the wedding here. The majority of our guests will be flying in or driving in from Michigan (families) and Oregon (friends/where we moved from).
Right now we basically have it narrowed down to two places:
- Lodge + campground on a lake in the middle of the woods
- 1.5 hours from where we live
- 6 Cabins & 9 rooms onsite (for 45 people)
- Central lodge + common areas to convene
- Restaurant/Bar onsite
- Rehearsal dinner, 2 breakfasts included in package
My FI has his heart set on Venue #1. He loves the lake (so do I), he loves that the family/WP could all be in one place (so do I). It's much more expensive (almost twice as much) than the venue-only option, but my parents have indicated that they will pay for the bulk of the wedding cost. I have a few concerns: it's far away from hotels/towns where some of our (~150) guests will be staying, it's inflexible because of the 'package' (my brother is a sommelier and wants to be able to select wines for the wedding... it includes dessert with the wedding dinner which we don't really want), and, lastly and perhaps most vainly, it's a little outdated and while I like rustic, I am having a hard time picturing myself getting ready for my wedding in a log cabin with carpet from the 60s...
- Ceremony & reception site on 170 acres in the woods
- 30 minutes from where we live
- BYOB allowed
- No food provided (we would select a caterer)
This option is much less expensive because we can select our own caterer and bring our own alcohol; the ceremony chairs and reception tables/chairs/linens are included in the price of the venue rental. The owners seem friendly and It's also gorgeous, brand new building and we love the style. BUT - if we selected this venue, we would basically be staying at our house during the wedding weekend, and family/WP would be staying the the hotel downtown, so we wouldn't really all be together. FI's parents are divorced and won't stay in the same house together, so getting a giant VBRO isn't an option in this case -- plus I don't think we want everyone in the same house for everyone's sanity. There would also be additional costs/considerations that are included with the previous option, like the breakfasts.
I'm trying to visualize what this weekend looks like in either scenario and somewhat failing. I think either venue will be great, they are both beautiful and obviously the wedding is not about the place, it's about the people. So I guess I am looking for some feedback/guidance on things I might not be considering, or things I am overthinking!
Also - do you think it is worth asking or OK to ask the lake lodge if we can tweak the package a bit for more flexibility?