Weekend Weddings

A trend that is growing in popularity is the Weekend Wedding! A Weekend Wedding extends the traditional wedding of ceremony, cocktail, dinner and dancing into a weekend long celebration! Not to be confused with a destination wedding that requires guests to travel far, a weekend wedding could be a location not far from where you live or work. Generally 1-3 hours away; an easy escape for friends and family.

Weekend Wedding venues, like at Essex Conference and Retreat Center in Cape Ann, Massachusetts, offers everything – from sleeping accommodations and games to wedding ceremony and reception area.

Essex Conference Center & Retreat, Cape Ann MA

Essex Conference Center & Retreat

Reasons to have a Wedding Weekend:

  • Ease stress of traveling the day of your wedding. You can wake up, feeling refreshed and not have to spend time traveling anywhere! Plus, your guests can enjoy the night without worries of driving.
  • More time to spend with family and friends. You don’t have to worry about greeting everyone in a short period during the reception – you have all weekend to talk to everyone!
  • Celebration is longer and more enjoyable, allowing you to bond with family and friends.


Discover more and ideas for planning your weekend wedding >

How to create Rustic Elegance?

When you think of Rustic Elegance in terms of wedding décor what do you think of? I imagine soft twinkling lights, soft color palette, draped linens and rustic wooden features. After picking The Barn at Wesleyan Hills as our wedding venue, I immediately started looking into their décor options. I am true believer that adding little personal touches and décor details goes along way. Especially wedding décor, these details help pull the whole room together and create the perfect atmosphere for your special day.chandeliers

The Barn at Wesleyan Hills offers a number of different décor packages including paper lanterns, string lights, fabric drapes and now chandeliers! Just when I thought I had my mind made up on string lights with fabric drapes I am now torn because what is more elegant then chandeliers?

What décor package do you like best? I wonder if I could do both?

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We’ve set a Date!

I can’t believe I’ve been engaged for almost 5 months, time has certainly flown by. The excitement and giddiness that surrounds an engagement is amazing and truly a special time, I am so glad I was able to relish in that moment. (If you missed our engagement story, click here)

Wedding planning starts almost immediately though, doesn’t it? After the “Congratulations” the questions begin, “Did you set a date?” “Did you find a venue?” “Do you know what kind of dress you want?” It can be terrifying and overwhelming. I don’t want this experience to be like that and I believe it’s up to you as a couple to ensure wedding planning doesn’t consume you and stress you out. In an effort to get organized and stay stress free, my fiancé and I decided to take a weekend and brainstorm. We created an excel spreadsheet (nerdy?) and got organized. A tab was created for each important part of our wedding planning. We started from the beginning moments of our wedding weekend and worked our way to the end discussing all the different ideas we had, the do’s and don’ts, names of family and friends, our wish list splurges and our max budget. It was actually fun and quite freeing. We felt organized and in sync. It helped us visualize what our day should be like and prepare for our first big wedding decision… picking the venue.

Where will we celebrate such a wonderful occasion? There are so many things to consider as well as decisions and obstacles to work around. Each venue is unique and different in what they offer. We had a few requirements for our venue.

• accommodate approximately 130-150 guests
• offer an outdoor space for the ceremony
• most importantly, the reception site would need to be a barn

Our vision is to create an intimate rustic wedding day. So we began our hunt for the perfect New England wedding barn. There are so many great rustic venues to choose from but finding one that met our requirements and budget was difficult. That is until we stumbled upon CT Wedding Group and discovered their amazing venue, The Barn at Wesleyan Hills.

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After arranging a visit we knew this was our place. The staff was amazing and the venue incredible. The place sold itself and everything else – from the décor packages to the food – was a bonus. So with no hesitation we picked our date and venue and could not be more excited. On May 30th, 2015, we will be married at The Barn at Wesleyan Hills in Connecticut.

With years of working in the wedding industry for TheWeddingOutlet.com & MAWeddingGuide.com, I’ve been surrounded by wedding tips & trends, designer accessories and so much more wedding inspiration. I should have this whole wedding planning business done easy since I was a pro, right? I’m not too sure. Now that I am a bride, it will be interesting to see what my thoughts and ideas on wedding planning is from the driver seat. Stay tuned as I will continue to share my journey as a bride in the wedding business planning my dream Rustic Wedding.

The Barn at Wesleyan Hills

After continuing my search for the perfect New England barn wedding venue I stumbled upon this gem of place. So this past weekend we set out to Middletown CT to see The Barn at Wesleyan Hills. This venue has it all, an outdoor area for a ceremony, tented patio for cocktail hour and a beautiful barn for a reception. Michelle from CT Wedding Group was wonderful. She answered all our questions and left us feeling confident that if this was our wedding venue we wouldn’t have to worry about a thing. It is very comforting to feel like your day will be executed exactly how you imagine it. Michelle explained that they have décor such as crates, burlap and more that they use to decorate around the barn and the food stations that are either “rustic country” or “rustic vintage” so depending on the couples vision they use the appropriate pieces to carry out the theme. This is a really nice perk as not many places will help decorate unless you pay for a package. I didn’t take any photos of the outdoor space as it was still covered in snow but you can see some real weddings if you visit CT Wedding Group.  Come back and let me know what you think?

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City style meets Intimate Feel

The Rivermill at Dover Landing in NH is a fairly new venue to hit the wedding scene. From their outstanding Wedding Wire Testimonials you’ll quickly see why this unique venue was next on our list to visit. While the venue is not exactly rustic like some of the previous venues we’ve visited, it offers a unique look and feel that interested us too. The high lofty ceilings, exposed brick and large gorgeous windows make this place stand out amoung other venues. This past Saturday we meet with Britt who was a delight. She was informative, personable and down to earth. While she discussed her venue and all it had to offer she happily suggested hotels, local restaurants and outdoor ceremony spots that would accommodate all our needs. This venue is essentially an open space for us to create a wedding all our own. With the appropriate up-lighting, decorations, tables and more personal touches this venue easily transforms into a wedding day you’ve dreamed of.

What do you think about this wedding venue?

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Engaged & Wedding Planning

On Christmas Eve Sean & I got engaged (read engagement story). Celebrating with family and friends was wonderful. It was really special to be able to take the time to enjoy our engagement, the holiday and start of the new year.

engaged

Come January the planning began, we created our spreadsheets, put together a guest list, brainstormed ideas and began the hunt for a wedding venue. The venue is the most exciting, yet most difficult decision to make. It’s where your whole day takes place. It sets the tone for your wedding and once your select your venue visualizing your day becomes real and the rest of the planning starts to fall into place.

With so many amazing Massachusetts wedding venues to choose from we knew we had to first discuss our season, theme and style before deciding. Our dream would be a spring, rustic and intimate wedding day. Some of the MA wedding reception sites we are considering are Harrington Farm, Red Lion Inn, Smith Barn, Rivermill in Dover NH. We have our tours booked and are excited to see these beautiful venues. Stay tuned!

Harrington Farm in Princeton MA

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Red Lion Inn in Cohasset MA (photo courtesy of Lisa Rigby Photography)

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Smith Barn in Peabody MA (photo courtesy of Heather Parker Photography)

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Rivermill in Dover NH

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