Saturday, June 14, 2008

#314: parks.

orcutt ranch

there's something sweet, innocent, and beautiful about open parks. i've looked at countless 'real weddings' held in parks and know that exquisite affairs are more than possible in (what is quite often) such an affordable space.

but would it be possible for a 125-person guest list? and would our guests who are in their 50's and 60's be comfortable? and what would be our rain contingency plan? and where would everyone dance? and what about the sound system? what about privacy? what about lighting? what about all the permits? what about serving alcohol?

the fiance and i have talked about researching parks for our reception and ultimately decided against it. we are not confident we could pull it off in the way we'd like.

we agreed that at the end of the day, the budget is important...but so is entertaining and the comfort of our guests.

not to mention our sanity. i'll be the first to admit that coordinating from WAY scratch...would be a daunting task for someone like me.


Linda said...

We're getting married in a park and yeah there is a lot you gotta do yourself, but it's great for the budget minded. We did not want to spend a lot on the fee so it was a good fit for me.
You might want to spend the money you save on the site for a DOC.

SmallgoodBride said...

We're getting married at a park. Most of the parks we looked at had indoor options such as a conference room, farm house, historic house, etc. The park also includes tables and chairs, so our rental cost is smaller. Good luck with your search.

Meg said...

Hey- I suggested Parks to you a while back, and it is what we are doing, but goodness me, I didn't mean outside! I meant venue's owned by parks and rec! We are getting married on a patio in front of a lovely ballroom (for lacke of a better word), and dinner and dancing will definitly be inside. It's a regular venue, it's just affordable because it is located IN a park. And yes, it comes with tables and chairs, and you don't need a alchol permit (or a rain contingancy plan, we'd just move the ceremony indoors). So, look into it. Around here its the *only* super affordable but practical option we could find.

Rebecca said...

I second Meg - LA Rec and Parks offers several "wedding designated" locations that include indoor/outdoor options (including Orcutt Ranch - yes, there's an indoors, Grace Simons Lodge - tables and ugly chairs included, Friendship House, Devonshire House and somewhere in San Pedro). Tou can always just check with other city parks you like about rentals (Griffith, Rancho, anywhere you like). Also check out LA County Park and Rec - they have multiple botanical gardens, not just the more expensive Arboretum. Glendale rec centers are dry, so that's out for me. I haven't been able to tell about Burbank - but the mountain views could be stunning if you found the right spot. Also, there are tons of local rec and park options in the smaller cities around LA. Agoura advertises heavily on wedsites, for example, but check out other suburbs that might have great park options (Santa Monica, Redondo, Sierra Madre, anywhere just to the east.) Check out Malibu parks too - rec and parks again, not the fancy schmancy beaches(I think you can do wine and beer in the city parks like Michael Langdon.)

I haven't extensively researched most of these yet, but there are tons of park locations with a rec room, a pretty patio, trees, a low-key feel, parking, and creative options at a low price.

Anonymous said...

Have you considered a "day of coordinator?" Mrs. Jasmine just blogged about hers on, and they had their wedding in the LA/OC area... She sounded AMAZING--even if you don't end up hiring one they usually have so much wedding knowledge she may be able to point you in the right direction with venues. Good Luck!!

christina said...

first of all, I love your blog!

secondly, I second Rebecca's post. I think LA Parks & Rec is a great way to go. If I weren't getting married in my backyard, I would get married at the LA Arboretum. I'm a locations manager & I just did a shoot there. It's beautiful & the wedding coordinators (Nadia & Thomasina) are great! I don't know the rates, but it's a really beautiful & special place!

Good luck!!