Photo by Coppersmith Photography
Looking for a wedding venue is like an epic Gladiator battle in which only the trendiest, most convenient and price-conscious venue survives (or at least that’s how it felt to me).
I’ll be the first to admit I didn’t know where to start with the whole reception venue thing, and so I made a huge mistake…I looked everywhere. We started by narrowing down a ceremony site, both of which were downtown (Basilica of St. Mary’s and Our Lady of Lourdes).
At first we just looked at reception venues nearby, but being the penny-pincher that I am, they all felt too expensive.
My fiancé and I started keeping a spreadsheet which detailed all the estimated costs of the venue, including food, drink, rental fees and any extra costs. We even factored in taxes.
The spreadsheet grew and grew until it included about 10 Minneapolis venues, three St. Paul venues, one barn, and an upstate lake resort. At this point we were both about ready to elope. We were so serious about the idea we talked it through for days. We stopped when we realized it would mean excluding family members and that wasn’t okay with us.
Eventually, after about a month of this, we had some serious conversations with our parents, decided on what was really most important and booked the Minneapolis Event Center. It was near our ceremony site, Basilica of St. Mary’s, and just “felt right.” The casual atmosphere with exposed brick, and wood beams won me over while also providing modern features, like updated bathrooms. It provided ample space for a cocktail hour, and dining, with an outdoor patio usable in nice weather.
I didn’t lose out entirely on the budget either. Understanding our situation, management graciously dropped the venue fee to assist us. All I can say is it never hurts to ask. And more than the actual dollar amount, the compromise aspect made us all the more willing to sign with the venue. So good luck to you in this battle!