Minnesota

Northern MN reception venue help

Hello all, 

First off congrats to everyone reading this on your engagement.  Secondly I hope you all have a wonderful life together. 
Well,myself I am just starting the planning out...just got engaged over christmas.  I live south of minneapolis, but LOVE the outdoors.  We travel to state parks all the time to go hiking and such and I would like a northern mn local that is very scenic but not that expensive.  Since I don't live up north I though the best way is to get some advice from people who live up north...that is where you all come in. 

I was wondering if anyone knew of a reception location willing to hold like 200+ people in Northern MN, that is very scenic.  I would not care if the reception were outside or inside a banquet hall, just as long as it's scenic in the area. 
I have attended wedding fairs and looked at the venues listed here on the knot...and those are okay, but I'm looking for a quaint spot that might not do a lot of advertising and would only be known by word of mouth.  

Can anyone help?  Thanks a bunch!

Re: Northern MN reception venue help

  • brimavenbrimaven member
    100 Comments
    edited December 2011
    you could check out craguns in brainerd.
    My cousin had here wedding there, and said Diane was easy to work with.
  • binkleykernbinkleykern member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thank you very much..I did check out Craguns...that's a really nice and scenic spot.  Thank you very much for suggesting it.  I appreciate you taking the time. 
  • kbell747kbell747 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    We're getting married at Lutsen Resort, and so far the experience has been really fabulous.  They can do larger weddings, and the site is awesome -- you can get married right next to the lake weather permitting.  The dinner is inside in the lodge and dance is in the lodge in the conference room (which really does not look like a standard conference room -- I was initially really turned off by this but it's great).  If you want to, you can also do your dinner during the reception and/or the rehearsal dinner outside on the beach.
  • jaschm03jaschm03 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011

    My friends got married and held their reception at Pattison State Park in Superior, WI (about 30 min from Duluth, MN). They rented a pavillion and did their own food, but didn't have a dance. The space would be plenty for 200 guests, but I'm not sure about water/electricity. It's absolutely beautiful though--lots of paved trails and waterfalls. Here's their website:
    http://dnr.wi.gov/org/land/parks/specific/pattison/

    Ruttger's Sugar Lake Lodge, in Grand Rapids, MN, is another beautiful spot. It's about 20-25 min from GR, and is right on the lake. You could have an indoor or outdoor wedding, and then the reception would be in the conference room. It's a great space, but it's pretty spendy...

  • edited December 2011
    One of the best places I've found is Buena Vista Ski Lodge near Bemidji, MN (http://www.bvskiarea.com/), however they don't allow alcohol, so I am not going to use it... it is beautiful, huge, and they let you do whatever you want in terms of catering/decorating/etc.

    I am having trouble finding something as well, I am looking for a similar type venue that holds 200, and I am from Northern MN... its tough.  I am trying to find a lake resort with a lodge or indoor space big enough for the dinner dance.... its not easy!

  • binkleykernbinkleykern member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thank you very much for the suggestions...I did check out Lutsen's, I went to the minneapolis bridal fair and they were there...along with a lot of other vendors...but they were all out of my price range. But I appreciate the suggestion...I did really like the Lutsen resort, it was very beautiful.  

    I checked out the state park website...it's awesome...I have checked out some state parks in MN, here but they are all too small...this might work....Thanks

    Buena vista doesn't allow alcohol...I wouldn't use them either...lol..  I found this really nice park system called the three rivers park district, it is really perfect, but they don't allow hard liquor or kegs, only bottles...and my family like the hard liquor so if i were to do it there, they would probably try to sneak the hard liquor in...and I don't want any fines on my wedding day...lol. 

    Here are a couple of places that I found, that aren't going to work for me...maybe they will work for you:

    1)http://www.minnetonkaorchards.com/ (an apple orchard...really perfect, I still might use this but not sure.)( this is south a bit, not sure how far you willing to travel)

    2)http://www.theenchantedbarn.com/ (this is called the enchanted barn..it's really cool I think, but over what I want to spend) (there is no price on the website, but what the guy told me was that with food and taxes "out the door" sort of speak was 8,000.  You would have to bring your own alcohol if you wanted it)

    3)Three rivers park district (there are a lot of spots within this one site)

    4) Bluefin Bay on Lake Superior...They hold 200 people Entrees range from 16.95-25.95 a person and then they have special packages (my fiance really like this place)

    5) Grand Superior Lodge..again hold about 200 people.. They have different packages ranging from 5000 -9500 (priced per 100 people)...Money mouth

    Thanks for the suggestions keep them coming and I hope my ideas helped as well. Laughing
  • binkleykernbinkleykern member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I was wrong on the bluefin bay...they only hold 100 people...sorry
  • edited December 2011
    I'm from the Brainerd area...if you're interested in that area you should check out Grandview or Madden's. Both are very nice and can accomodate the number of people you need.
  • sarahmary215sarahmary215 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    We are getting married at Wendigo Lodge in Grand Rapids. We looked everywhere for a place that could hold up to 400 people in the middle of Winter (Dec 18th!), was outdoorsy, and reasonably priced. They met all criteria, were willing to do the reception and ceremony in one place, have a hotel on site and more lodging available close, and so far have been really friendly. You can look at them at: http://wendigolodge.com/index.html

    Grand Rapids also has Timber Lodge which is really beautiful and can hold around 500 people but they are more expensive and located right in town so no outside pictures there.

    We looked at a lot of beautiful places but they were all too expensive. Good Luck!
  • edited December 2011
    I too am looking for a venue on the North Shore.  I had my heart set on Grand Superior Lodge from the website and the price, but they advertise that they can host 200 and there is NO WAY 200 people can fit in their reception area!!!  Would be way too crowded and the windows are so small and high up that you really don't feel like you're up on the north shore... which is what you're paying for, right?

    Superior Shores is an AWESOME place to look as well.  They accomodated a wedding of 300 when I visited and they're really easy to work with.  You can have your ceremony right on the rocks, weather permitting.  It is just north of Two Harbors.  Great venue and they've got the bonfires, hiking trails, and scenery that you're looking for... yet not ALL the way up the shore.

    Hope that helps someone!

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  • edited December 2011

    hey there, you may have already found a venue since you posted a few months ago, but I'll offer a couple suggestions because I am from the Range :)

    Elbow Lake Lodge in Cook, MN...they let you have the whole resort to yourself I'm pretty sure, its gorgeous up there! http://www.elbowlake.com/

    Giants Ridge in Biwabik...the only downside to this is if your guests want to stay there, they have to stay two nights because it is "a resort not a super 8 motel." Other than that, its awesome there...golfing and swimming in the summer and a ski resort in the winter! http:/www./giantsridge.com/

    Fortune Bay Resort and Casino in Tower...sure, its a casino, but its right on lake Vermilion so youcan rent a pontoon and stuff. It also has a golf course...they have a very resonable wedding package. http://www.fortunebay.com/

    I hope this helps! Let us know what you end up going with :)


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  • binkleykernbinkleykern member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thank you very much...I have checked out elbow lake they were one of our first choices..but still too expensive on some food I think.   I will check out the other two.  THank you very much everyone, I appreciate all the information and suggestions. 

    I think we decided to have the recpetion in southern mn.  My uncle has a beautiful piece of land with a pond, apple orchard, beautiful old buildings..etc...it's wonderful.  So now I need to find a ceremony spot for the groom does not want to to the ceremony at my uncle's house.  So thank you very much for the replys....I've looked up every one and would love to do it at any of them, if money weren't an issue....lol...THanks Have a great day and I hope your ceremonies are wonderful. 
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