Ehrman Mansion at Sugar Pine Point State Park

Anyone getting married here?   I just booked for August 2011 and I am wondering about some of the logistics.... lighting, power sources, bathrooms, setup timeframe... etc.  

It's an evening event at a completely outdoor venue and I've heard the lighting situation is not the best so I have a few concerns.   I would love to hear from anyone that's had their wedding or attended one at this location.


Re: Ehrman Mansion at Sugar Pine Point State Park

  • edited December 2011
    The only thing I know about Sugar Pine is that the view is stunning! We would have gone with them, but was told by their ranger that my wedding size was their capacity, (150) and that we wouldn't be able to do the ceremony until 5:00 because it would take too long to set up. WAS NOT HAPPY about the timing, so we went with Gatekeeper's.

    The ranger seems to like the "old fashioned" light posts that you can reserve at the party rental places, and I do not think you can stake things into the ground. ( We wanted to tent the dance floor with a clear tent), and they said no to crouquet stakes, etc.

    No hard alcohol either. Beer and wine okay!
  • edited December 2011
    PS: she actually said it could be 5:30 before the ceremony even started, and you have to be out by 10 sharp. No ifs ands or buts. You are also responsible for clearing trash, etc. Your caterer will hopefully handle that aspect. 4.5 hours for the ceremony and the reception seemed too short, so I would really work with your vendors to try to set up everything asap. We are coming up from Newport Beach, and a lot of our guests will be too...if your guestlist is smaller than 150, the ranger likes this, and you could probably set up before 5:00/5:30. Vendors are not allowed to set up a thing before 3:30pm the day of, so I would make sure you hire someone who is familiar with the set up at Sugar Pine:)
  • edited December 2011
    Thanks for your thoughts.   I'm going with Mountain Magic Catering and "A Party House" for the rentals.  According to the park ranger that books the events there, those 2 companies do about 80% of the weddings at Ehrman Mansion so they are very familiar with setup/breakdown procedures and they work well together.  They both begin setup at 3:30 and start cleaning up at 10pm. The catering company has assured me that they take care of the removal of all garbage and recyclables.  I'm a little worried about only having 1.5 hours to setup favors, centerpieces... etc. so I guess I'll have to get a crew of friends to help with that.

    I did reserve the old fashioned lighting that you mentioned which, aside from votives on the tables is about the only lighting at night.  I also reserved a halogen flood lamp for the walkway to the bathroom.  I read on a forum that the walk back to the parking lot is very dark so I'm considering flashlight favors.   Also considering battery operated lighting elements like lanterns since the power situation there is minimal.

    I've been told that DJ's/Band's will need to provide their own power source, or I can rent a generator from the rental company.   Do any Tahoe Brides have suggestions for DJ's that bring their own generator?

    As I'm listing all this off, it seems like there are a lot of downsides to this property - tight timeframe, minimal power & lighting, minimal indoor facilities.  BUT!!!   I have been here and it is absolutely gorgeous.   We wanted a private estate wedding but after much research, thought it wasn't in our budget.   This may be a state park but it is very private and the lakefront grounds are vast and beautiful.   Also, the catering and rental vendors have really put my mind at ease so I'm not as worried as I originally was.   And bonus - we provide all of our own alcohol and the catering company doesn't charge corkage so that's saving us big time!!

    Would love to hear other stories, thoughts, experiences....
  • edited December 2011
    Sugar Pine is such a great choice! The view is out of this world. You get the vibe of an estate too.

    I am using Mountain Magic too, but a different rental co. I would def. tap friends to help set favors up, etc. That is a really great idea to save time. The ranger scared me off by saying it could be 5:30 when I could start....oh well. We both got great venues. We met the caterer last weekend, and he was great.

    I am still researching DJ's, so if you get any leads, let me know! Where are you having everybody stay?

  • Jaime E.Jaime E. member
    edited December 2011
    Hi Ladies,
    I would definitely suggest Ryan Palmer at Lake Tahoe DJ. I work with him pretty frequently and he's a blast (great music too)! Not sure if he has his own generator though. 

    Best of luck.

  • edited December 2011
    Thanks for the tip!  Gatekeeper's has plenty of electricity, so no generator would be neccesary. (I Hope!_) Any more tips for local vendors??
  • Jaime E.Jaime E. member
    edited December 2011
    Katie Cakes - So yummy!
    D'lish Catering
    Bella Tahoe Catering
    Thran's - Flowers

    Check out Weddings of the West and both the North & South Tahoe Wedding Associations. These websites (along with The Knot) usually have a really comprehensive list of vendors. Vendors are located all over the Tahoe basin and will usually travel to either shore without any additional fees. If you have any specific questions about a vendor, feel free to send me a message or email. I'm a local vendor and i've lived in Tahoe for a long time :)
    Good luck!

  • edited December 2011
    Just got back from a planning trip to Tahoe and here's what I've got so far....

    Venue: Ehrman Mansion
    Catering: Mountain Magic
    Rentals: A Party House
    Photography: Matt Theilen (amazing!!)
    Cake: The Cork & More (South Lake)
    Hair/Makeup - Sessions Salon (South Lake)
    Flowers: Safeway - Carrie in the floral department at the South Lake Safeway gave me 3 hours of her time to brainstorm and create a quote.  She was extremely knowledgeable and helpful and Safeway can actually order anything you want.  Most importantly, they're MUCH cheaper than other local florists and based on Carrie's portfolio, her arrangements are just as nice.   I'm doing almost all orchids and i managed to stay under 1k for all bouquets, bouts,centerpieces & decor.

    Now my main concern turns to TRANSPORTATION.   We would really like for our guests to stay in South Lake since that's where all the action/fun/casinos/heavenly village.... etc are.  Ok, I used to live in South Lake so I'm biased Tongue out
    As anyone who has made the beautiful drive around the lake knows, the route between South Lake and West Shore (where the Ehrman Mansion is) is not only a long one, but a dangerous one.   My guests are definitely the type that enjoy a good open bar and the thought of everyone driving home over Emerald Bay Road after the party really worries me.   I looked into bus/shuttle companies but to arrange that for over 100 guests is $$$$$$$!!!   

    My mom had the great idea to contact the South Lake School District to see if they rent out their school buses over the weekends.   I was doubtful but we called them anyway and were pleasantly surprised to learn that this is something they are considering doing.   The department head, Christy, said that major budget cuts have caused them to start looking for other revenue streams and since they've received requests like this before, they were going to check with their insurance and school board policies to see if this is something they can offer.  

    So here's my plan.... If anyone is looking for affordable transportation in or around South Lake, call or email the school district and ask them.   The more requests they get, the better chance they will move to offer this service and the more $$$ we will all save!!  Here is the contact information:

    SLT School District Transportation Dept.
    Christy Blach
    530-543-2218 ext. 261
    [email protected]

    I'm going to start a new thread for Tahoe transportation ideas so I'll copy my thoughts there too.  Thanks for everyones comments and vendor suggestions.   Keep'em coming :)

  • Trying to plan a wedding on my own. Do you have any advice or a list of companies that you used for yours. Planning to use Sugar Pine for the wedding and still looking for a place to have reception.
  • Red1269: I'd check out restaurants on the west shore. I've photographed several weddings at Sugar Pine and some of the places the receptions were held have been Chamber's Landing, West shore Cafe, and Sunnyside. You could also look at Tahoe Tree Company (a beautiful garden spot south of Tahoe City) and Granlibakken. Other places past clients have chosen are Gar Woods and Graham's, though those are further north. Good luck!
    Nicole Miller Photography
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