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New Jersey

Need venue help!

Hi, all! I'd love some help with venue ideas. My fiance and I want to have a fun and casual wedding in a different sort of venue. We've been to our fair share of reception halls for weddings lately, and although they are lovely, it's just not us. We're looking at a pretty small budget but right now we have a guest list of about 160 (which may need to be reevaluated, but anyway...)

We currently live outside of Princeton. My fiance's from Freehold. I'm from the Lehigh Valley (PA), and within the next two years, we'd like to move back to the Ambler (PA) area. So we are open to having our wedding in any of these places.

Help! Not sure where to start looking for offbeat venues. :) Thanks so much! 

Re: Need venue help!

  • What is your budget per person?
  • HI! About 3 years ago, I went to my Cousin's wedding that she had at: the John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove and it was BEAUTIFUL. My great aunt lives all of 4 minutes up the road so after the reception we all gathered at her house (well, almost all of us!) The ceremony was held outdoors under a very large tree, the cocktail hour was in the Air Conditioned barn that was spacious and rustic and the reception was held outside, in a covered patio type setting.  It was absolutely amazing and I would have my wedding outdoors, but being that I'm getting married on Saturday, it'll be a bit cold!!! 

    Good luck!

    Wedding Countdown Ticker


    Michelle & Ronald
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    image 172 Invites sent
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    Need 8 adults to make minimum.  Eek.
  • ctr24ctr24 member
    100 Comments 25 Love Its First Anniversary Name Dropper
    Perona Farms might be good for you
  • Thanks, much appreciated! :)
  • The Barn at Perona Farms. I was so excited to check this venue out. What a disappointment attended wedding last summer. 2 afternoon weddings going on in the Perona farms across the street but were ending at 5:00pm then I see 2 more weddings coming in for the night shift plus the wedding I'm attending at the Barn. That’s 5 brides in one day, wow talk about get em in and get em out. I arrived early the parking lot was full no space to park until I saw the dirt road leading to the Barn parked and I decided to walked the property with my fiancée, had to cross street but I had to wait for a pack of Harley's to go by first very busy road. Once across I saw the apple orchard tons of rotten apples on the ground being hovered over by bee's also people who own the house in orchard were outside play tennis on their courts looks like they own the orchard too. Continued to tour the grounds saw the Island in the middle of a algae pond next to the busy road 2 brides waiting to take pics but the grounds were nice. The ceremony was about to start so we headed back. The parking lot was insane and I guess due to the amount of guest there was a very strong odor of septic in the air. Made it back to the Barn almost twisted my ankle walking up this dirt gravel road to the entrance of the barn valet guy was really nice and pointed us in the right direction. The white chairs were set up on the side lawn in the middle of the barn and someone’s house, which the people at the house were outside on their deck during the ceremony. The bride and groom are very good friends and now I'm starting to feel bad for them because I know they paid close to $200.00 per person. Ceremony was nice but felt like 100 degrees no cover on a day like that Ceremony was over and now were going into the Barn for cocktail hour. Hmmmm a little different nice plywood ceiling, concrete floor like around a built in swimming pool. Just looked unfinished. The food line wrapped around 1/2 the inside of the barn. Finally get up to the food pizza station looked like pizza for one no assorted topping just one little pizza, carving of salmon that was good, pasta just sitting in 2 sauté pans over cooked, then a sausage station that was different, then shrimp on ice and platters of sliced cold cuts the salads well I felt like I was at a picnic. Cocktail hour was over and they moved us up stairs a friend of mine had to take the elevator which was very scary it was like an old slow moving freight elevator we took the steps 2 flights Now we are all upstairs the floor is the original barn floor and my heels are getting caught in the middle of the wood floor thank god the bride provided flip flops there was no dance floor just a space left open to dance the tables were set up like a convention the tables looked like they were pulled out of a pool of lacquer and 12 of us at one table the plates china and glasses looked like they came from the dollar store, Already on the table a small bowl of olives some cheese and red peppers and a bowl of salad we all had to pass this around. Then the bide was introduced they had to wiggle through the tables to make it up to the dance floor next they placed platters of beef and chicken and platters of vegetable and potato again we all had to pass the platters around at this point I felt like I was at a high school sports award dinner. This place looks like they just swept it out put up some up lighting but forgot to take down from the ceiling the old heaters what an eye sore my fiancée being a volunteer fireman notice no sprinkler system in case of a fire that was a little concerning and scary especially being on a second floor in a all wood building. Biggest draw back bathrooms all down stairs and I realized were the smell was coming from, I asked one of the staff what is that smell and she told me they didn’t enlarge the septic so when its busy that’s what happens. I really feel bad for my friends and of course we all told them best wedding ever but truly a total disappointment. This is my first review but I just feel like I had to write this. We found our venue a beautiful rustic Barn but 100 % more finished at half the price. 

  • I'm getting married at the Conservatory at the Sussex County Fairgrounds. It is an awesome space and I recommend checking it out. 
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