A huge thank you to Kelsey Motes-Conners from Glacier Park Weddings for today’s post. As a bride who recently got married, this post is an absolute gold mine for anyone planning a wedding.

Glacier Park WeddingVenueLovePhoto by Ryan Flynn Photography

Choosing a setting for your wedding is often one of the first and biggest items to check off your wedding-planning list, and for good reason: the venue lends atmosphere to your event and becomes the aesthetic foundation on which the rest of your style decisions are built. What’s more, your venue’s availability will often dictate your wedding date and, by extension, your bookings with other vendors. So here are a few tips to keep in mind during your hunt for the perfect venue:

Style

As you research and tour different venues, keep your vision for your wedding in mind. Pay attention to the look and feel of the place, and whether you can see it complimenting your style. Consider choosing a lovely, well-cared-for space that is also flexible, neutral and customizable–a blank canvas for you to make your own (You’d hate to get three months into planning, change your color scheme entirely and then be bummed about the way your dream flowers will clash with the red drapes at your venue).

Glacier Park WeddingVenueLove

Photo by Alicia Brown Photography

 

Vendor flexibility

Ask whether you’ll be able to choose your own vendors, or if the venue will require you to work with specific caterers, cake bakers, bars, etc. Consider choosing a venue that can provide recommendations as to reputable or ‘preferred’ vendors, but will still allow you to make the final choice about who you’ll work with.

Glacier Park WeddingVenueLove

Photo by Alicia Brown Photography

 

One venue

Your event will flow more effortlessly, and your guests will likely be more relaxed, if the ceremony and reception are at the same venue. Look for a venue that has separate spaces available for the ceremony and reception, though, to keep the event lively and interesting for your guests.

Glacier Park WeddingVenueLove

Photo by Alicia Brown Photography

 

Outdoor amenities

If you are in love with the idea of an outdoor wedding, choose a venue that can provide the necessary amenities (water, electricity, restrooms and some kind of shelter) to avoid the added stress and expense of trucking in generators and water tanks, renting tents and portable restrooms.  Simplicity is key!

Glacier Park Weddings WeddingVenueLove

Photo by Ryan Flynn Photography

 

Staff and services

A professional and accommodating venue staff can go a long way in taking the stress out of your big day. A venue with a designated events manager will likely provide all kinds of helpful services, coordination packages and more, and you’ll have a contact person for questions during the planning process.

Glacier Park WeddingVenueLove

Photo by Latasha Haynes Photography

 

Destination weddings

For a destination wedding, work with a venue that can also provide lodging, activities, gathering places and transportation for your guests. Not only will all of your guests be in worry-free vacation mode, but you will also be relieved of making sure everyone is entertained and taken care of.

Glacier Park WeddingVenueLove

Photo by Ryan Flynn Photography

 

Budget

Ask for a detailed description of what is included in the rental of the venue; Knowing what you’ll have to provide versus what will be provided by the venue will help you determine how it will all fit into your budget. Keep in mind that some venues also come along with food and beverage minimums that should be figured into your budget as well.

Most importantly…

Make sure both of you agree that the venue feels like the right place for your celebration!

Thanks again Kelsey! This post is very “shareworthy,” I’m sure we’ll see it pop up on Twitter and Facebook this week. :)  To learn more about Glacier Park visit them on WeddingVenueLove.