Scranton Wedding Venue | Choosing your Venue
Scranton Wedding Venue
Choosing Your Venue
Baby Step #1
Choose your wedding planner prior to venue search!!! Your wedding planner should be #1 on your list. She will help you set up a budget, help present you with your big to-do list, help you choose a season & a theme, & supply venue & vendor options. You WANT her with you at the Venue Consultation. She’s there to get your back and ask any questions you might not have considered. She can also help you decide if the venue will fit within your budget and your theme. Some venues include a wedding planner so if you decide to take the easier route, call and ask ahead of the consultation whether wedding planners are included.
Baby Step #2
Create a wedding budget. The wedding planner should already be helping you set this up. Just make sure you have a budget prior to shopping around. The planner can also give you a realistic cost frame for your wedding budget.
Baby Step #3
Create a guest list. Yes I know, this seems like one of those monotonous details that should be saved for a little bit later down the road, you know, after the date is settled & the dress bought but truthfully if you have your guest list done, you will need it for choosing your venue. It will also affect your budget.
Baby Step #4
Narrow down your wedding to a season, and a preferred month. Don’t settle on the date until you’ve confirmed with your wedding planner, venue, & photographer. You won’t regret it if you follow this step! Also some venues offer discounted prices on off-days such as Fridays or Sundays.
Baby Step #5
Decide on a theme for your wedding or even your top favorites. Themes are important for cohesiveness in your wedding. It is what will pull together décor, food, venue, style, & music. Theme is what will make people walk away and remember your wedding versus just checking off another social event off the calendar. Choosing a theme (or at least narrowing the list) will narrow your search options for a venue. It’s like setting the goal for the event; the other details are the objectives.
Baby Step #6
Don’t just settle for one venue until you’ve looked into several. For out-of-“towners”- Check with the locals as they may know a space that will match just what you are looking for!
Baby Step #7
Take some time to read & prepare for your consultation with a venue. A Wedding planner should cover all this for you but in the case you are flying solo (or you just happen to be a micro-manager), here a great guide to follow during the consultation. There is a lot of info but if you stick with the main points, you will cover all the major steps.
What things are you looking for in a VENUE?
- Space – how’s the size? The look of the place?Weather contingency plan in case of rain for outdoor venues? Do they provide rooms for wedding party to get ready? Wheel chair accessible? Bathrooms, are they nice? (tip: go see them yourself!)Décor- are there limitations? Open candle flame allowed? Chairs provided? Chairs set up included with the fee? What about for the dance floor? Good acoustics? Lighting? Outlets? Restrictions on music?
- Menu– how’s the food? What do the reviews say? Are the plates within your price range? Do they allow outside vendors? Cocktail hour food? Food tasting before your wedding? Menu options? Vegetarian options? Price? Do they have a liquor license?
- Management-How did you feel after meeting with the site coordinator? Will they let you extend the hours on the wedding day if needed? Do they provide an on-site wedding coordinator? Who will supervise day of wedding? What time can vendors start setting up day of wedding? Day before?
- Location– how far are you asking your guests to drive? How close will the reception hall be to your church? Is it a location where you can have pictures taken or close to an ideal location? Parking accessible? Extra fees? Valet? Overnight accommodations? Accommodations discounted? On site Security? Liability insurance?
- Price– Affordable? Payment schedule? Hidden fees? Taxes & gratuities? Cancellation policy? What kind of deposit is needed?
Some Additional Tips:
Visit a venue when it’s set up for a wedding
Take pictures at your consultation
Read the contract- Get it all in Writing!
Darkershadesofbrown’s top favorite venues for the Scranton/Wilkesbarre area:
The premier place to get married in Northeast PA, Skytop Lodge is a historic castle set in the gorgeous Pocono Mountains. Catering to larger crowds, offering friendly staff & extensive guest lodging, Skytop has a great reputation. If you are looking for more class, or perhaps going with a vintage theme, than Skytop is the venue for you.
Located conveniently in downtown Scranton, this gorgeous building is a piece of architectural beauty. Ornate and spacious, the Scranton Cultural Center hosts your cocktail hour on an upper balcony overlooking the venue. The staff are flexible, easy to work with. The lighting is particularly stunning.
Darkershadesofbrown Photography says that the Scranton Cultural Center is by far the nicest place to get married in Scranton.
Looking for a charming site with a real scenic view? Mountain Springs is nestled in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains and offers you a beautiful private and secluded location. BEST outdoor location in this area. Everything is included and it’s a great place to have pictures taken. FYI: it’s a smaller Venue (limit: 200). Darkershadesofbrown Photography’s favorite venue for 2013!!
Some helpful articles on choosing a venue: