Top Five Ways to Choose Your Jackson Wedding Venue

Pinterest has given us the opportunity to share and embrace wedding trends easily. With so many Bridal Expos to attend, some of you Michiganders may be filling up your Pinterest boards with mason jars, chalkboard menus and chevron cakes in the coming months. 

Experience Jackson has a great Pinterest board to follow too: 

Although your wedding dreams may start with color schemes and flowing gowns, your wedding plans should actually start with the guest list and location. We asked our fans on Facebook to give us recommendations for wedding venues.

Poll: What's the Best Wedding Venue in #JacksonMI?

Posted by Experience Jackson on Friday, January 15, 2016

 We got some great advice and organized them here.

1. Embrace your love of barn weddings with burlap décor and check out Jackson’s barn wedding locations:

Hilltop Manor Inn in Clarklake is the perfect location for an elegant, sit-down dinner or down home barbeque. The barn interior boasts very high ceilings and gorgeous hardwood flooring. The grounds also provide a beautiful backdrop for picture taking too. 

The Eyry of the Eagle Farm features a modern reception hall, a charming 125-year old restored barn, wedding pergola, pond, windmill, wooded area, flower gardens and unique farm animals. This venue combines modern conveniences with farm surroundings. Some brides even arrive on horseback or horse drawn carriage!

2. Have a uniquely Jackson wedding at one of these iconic venues:

The Cascades is THE quintessential Jackson Icon. The manmade waterfall will be celebrating 84 years in operation this year! With beautiful new LED lights and a fancy new fence, the Cascade Falls are looking even more dazzling.

Of course inside the falls isn’t the only spot for the ceremony. Erika E. said “My hubby and I were married inside of the bandstand at Cascades… The view there, hearing the water and just being married inside of one of my favorite places here meant the world to me.”

After the ceremony the reception can be held at the Cascades Manor House recently voted Best Banquet Facility in Jackson.  With seating for up to 300 the guests will have plenty of room to dance the night away.

Photo of Rehnlund Wedding by EJO Photography

Another iconic spot of Jackson is Ella Sharp; both the park and the museum provide beautiful spots for pictures. Kim S. said “The hubby and I married June 1995 at the Ella Sharp Park Rose Garden!!!! It was beautiful and perfect!!!” Both the rose garden and rotunda are available for rental at the park while at the Ella Sharp Museum the community room provides the perfect venue to entertain your guests with a view of the historic Eli Stilson Log Cabin or the Granary with views on Farm Lane. With Ella's new ownership of the Hurst Planetarium smaller weddings of 80 or less can actually be held under the stars too!

The Michigan Theatre in downtown Jackson is another icon to host your wedding. This Jackson gem is considered one of the most splendid theaters in the state with carved walnut furniture, heavy damask draperies, and stained-glass light fixtures. Jessie Dietz-Bieske highly recommends The Michigan Theater. She is a bit biased of course as that was her wedding venue. She says, “I loved my venue, and my photographer was also amazing.”

Photo of bride Jessie Dietz-Bieske by Freeland Photography.

Larger weddings are welcomed to the Potter Center at Jackson College. With capacity for up to 315 guests, this iconic Jackson venue hosts about 50 weddings a year. Each booth in the facility comes with its own TV which is great for weddings with a lot of kids. Turn on the Nickelodeon and break out the crayons and coloring books, while the adults enjoy the great food and drinks!

Perhaps less known but no less spectacular is the Jackson Symphony Orchestra. This downtown performance hall can be beautifully decorated for weddings with up to 200 guests. Bring in local music too and consider hiring a quartet or quintet from the symphony.

3. Create a lifelong bond in a building that's been around for several lifetimes in Jackson's historic venues:

ART 634 was originally built in the 1850s as a wagon and carriage factory, adjacent to Michigan's First State Prison, which offered workers for the factory. Over the years, it has been used for numerous legal and illegal activities. Today it has been reborn as an industry of creativity featuring galleries of painting, photography, and theatre and dance studios. Venue 634 offers a unique atmosphere for small weddings with a capacity of 150. What better place to tie on the old ball & chain then next to Michigan’s First State Prison. 

For a more traditional and historic venue Celebrations Wedding Chapel is a beautiful historic Victorian church in Horton just outside of Jackson. Formerly the Billingsgate Restaurant, this event center is perfect for intimate gatherings of up to 50 guests. Stay tuned for an article on more historic churches in Jackson!

Waterloo Farm Museum fulfills both having a trendy barn wedding and an authentic historic venue. With a beautiful 19th century farmhouse, a rare restored Perkins windmill, a log house with a stone fireplace and of course the barn, there is no shortage of unique photo ops.

4. Combine your love of Michigan wine with the great outdoors and have a vineyard wedding:

Sandhill Crane Vineyards was voted Jackson’s best winery recently with a great selection to satisfy any palate. The beautiful banquet room features high ceilings, lots of light, a beautiful copper-topped bar and of course a delicious farm-to-table menu including many vegetarian options. This popular venue books quickly with 22 weddings already booked for the 2016 season.

Photo of Dan and Rebecca by Ashley Varney

Cherry Creek Winery in Brooklyn is located in an historic 1870s schoolhouse surrounded by beautiful vineyards. Their wines are award winning too! One of their wines has even been served to First Lady Michelle Obama! The pergola outside provides a great venue for guests to dance among the vines into the night.

We hope we’ve given you a great start to finding the right fit for your Jackson Wedding, but this is not an exhaustive list.

Click here for a full list of wedding venues.

5. Don’t forget about Grandma!

Do you have out of town guests looking for a place to stay? We can help! We can help you book a hotel room block as well as provide gift bags for out of town guests and ideas for things to do before and after the party.

Did you know we also have two hotels that have banquet rooms on site? Both the Holiday Inn NW and the Super 8 Brooklyn are available to host not only your guests for sleeping but also for the reception!

Click here for what Experience Jackson can do to help!

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