People keep asking us if we have decided on a date for the wedding yet... And the real answer is "We're hoping for Sept. 1," but we can't say anything definitively yet because we need to have a venue booked before we can arrange pretty much anything else. So the venue hunt is the first and most important thing right now.
Of course, that doesn't prevent all the other little details from fluttering around my brain in the meantime.
We went to see four places on Sunday with Ryan and Alice. Elm Bank had lovely grounds, very open fields. But the function room was very plain, even though they had a tent extension to one of the sides. It would take a LOT of decorating.
My initial worry about Broadmoor was right on -- very woodsy. Which is nice, except there's no place big enough for 80ish guests for either the ceremony or the reception. There's hardly even room enough for a tent to be set up.
We went to see Sherborn Inn on the way to see the Warren Conference Center. Elm Bank, Broadmoor and Sherborn Inn were all surprisingly close to each other -- like a mile or two. Anyway, Sherborn Inn does have a wonderful setting. The woman who helped us and showed us around also clued me into the Director of Events' "almost obsessive compulsive" personality -- which I just LOVED. It means she'll make sure everything will be perfect, which is usually my job and I'll be happy to give it up on our wedding day! I wanna be worried about my smile, not how straight the napkins are. ;-) There's a big open area outside (with trellis), so we could have the ceremony out there and the reception inside. It's a charming inn.
Then we headed to the Warren Conference Center and Inn. Lots of land and lots of outdoor ceremony possibilities. The function room was also nice. Not fancy or charming, although not as plain as the Elm Bank room.
I've also added a few places to our list of possibilities, namely Hunt House Inn and Arabian Horse Inn, both of which are very close. Hunt House may not have a place big enough for a reception for the number of people we want to invite, but we'd have to look at pictures of previous weddings there and see the place before we make a judgement call.
Paul and I are going tomorrow afternoon to scout out Tower Hill, which is probably my first choice at this point. I'm not sure if they even have the date open, which is key, but it'll be worth a look. Tower Hill is about 30 minutes from our house.
Garden in the Woods is also a possibility -- the woman there called me back yesterday and seemed very eager for us to take a look around. Apparently they are building a new mini-stadium that would hold up to 150 people, so I'll be anxious to see this new space. We have an appointment to see the place with fresh wedding-venue-hunter eyes on Thursday afternoon.
I'd like to get this part of the wedding planning process nailed down before we leave for our vacation (we're off to Cancun with Ryan and Alice). If we could have a deposit down somewhere, I'd feel better and wouldn't worry about the wedding plans when we're away.
Wish us luck with Tower Hill... ;-)