Posts in Selecting a Venue
Planning your wedding at The Colonnade

Curious how The Colonnade might work for your ceremony and reception? Our space is extremely flexible and we’re always happy to work together to customize the space, but there’s a few tried and true setups we’ve found work well for weddings of all sizes. 

Part of our expertise is knowing what will and won’t work for our space. We host well over 100 events a year, so we can help ensure that your creative ideas turn out to be a success! 

We’ve put together 3 graphics to help you visualize where your ceremony, dance floor, food, gifts, and cake can go in our space. To start, we suggest picking a dance floor location and building the rest of your layout from there.  
 

Step 1: Pick your dance floor


We have 3 popular options for dance floor placement. Tables can be placed around the dance floor in Option 1, allowing all your guests to watch as your family busts a move. 

Some couples enjoy how the dance floor is separate from the dining tables in Option 2, which is conducive to conversation for the non-dancers.

Of these three options, Option 3 allows for the most seating capacity, making room for tables across the main level to seat up to 200.

Keep in mind – we don’t lay down a separate dance floor, because our historic hardwoods work great as-is! Once you pick your dance floor spot, we’ll determine where the DJ and band setup should go. 
 

 
 


Step 2: Ceremony Location 

Before we nail down the rest of your reception details, we’ll want to figure out where your vows will take place. 

A courtyard ceremony is a popular option – depending on the season – and can seat up to 180 guests. 

Option 2 provides a wonderful decorating opportunity for a customized floral arch or drapery backdrop. This option can seat up to 130.

Option 3 offers great flexibility -- 72 guests can be seated on the lower level while additional guests can stand around the railing, giving them a great view of the ceremony. This setup highlights the textured brick and expansive windows for stellar photos. 

Depending on guest count, we can use Option 2 or 3 for an inclement weather plan.
 

 
 


Step 3: Everything else

Now that you have the two big decisions locked in, its time to determine the flow of guests and the placement of your food, gifts, and cake. 

While some folks opt for guests to arrive through the courtyard, most people utilize The Colonnade’s main entrance for guest arrival. Guests can set presents down on Gift Table Option 1 or 2 (as pictured below) as they arrive. You can also place a guest book table in the entryway or near the coat closet for easy access. 

Our main buffet area gives Pepper Moon Catering staff easy access to the kitchen and allows for guests to freely flow on both sides of the table, cutting down on serving time. Additional interactive food stations could be placed around the room to encrouage guests to mingle. 

Your cake can be highlighted in various locations. 
 

 
 

No matter what your vision, we belive we can make The Colonnade work for your wedding! You bring the ideas and we’ll bring our knowledge of past events. Together, we’ll create the perfect ceremony and reception for you and your guests.  

Selecting Your Wedding Venue

The following article was written by Jaime Gilliam, Venue & Catering Manager for Revolution Mill Events, and was originally published in Triad Weddings in January 2018.


Selecting your wedding venue is one of the first major decisions you’ll make as an engaged couple. Your venue sets the tone for the rest of your plans and will likely comprise much of your wedding budget.  Consider the following tips to help you confidently make your decision and reduce planning stress! 

 

KNOW YOUR NUMBERS

Know your approximate guest count, wedding date options and approximate budget before starting the search. 

 

ENVISION YOUR DAY

Your venue lays the foundation of telling your unique love story on your wedding day. Chat with your fiancé and other decision makers about the style and aesthetic you have in mind. Are there any essential features the space must have? 

 

RESEARCH AND TOUR

Use online resources and Triad Weddings to find local wedding venues. You should be able to narrow down options by the framework you set in the previous tips.  Each venue has its own character and charm, and a site visit will help you determine if it is the right fit for you. Save time and find out as much as you can about a venue before you go visit. Contact your top picks in advance to set up a personal tour. Document the details by taking notes and snapping photos to help you make comparisons.

 

ASK QUESTIONS

Gather as much information as possible! 

  • How long is the venue rental?
  • What amenities are included, such as tables, chairs and linens? 
  • Are outside vendors permitted?
  • Are there any décor or grand exit restrictions? 
  • Are there enough parking spaces and restrooms to accommodate the guest count? 
  • What is the rain plan?
  • Does the venue itself photograph well and provide pretty portrait spots? 
  • What will the overall guest experience be like?

 

CONSIDER CATERING

Since catering goes hand in hand with your venue, it’s important to consider options during the early planning stages. There are several benefits to choosing a venue with an exclusive caterer. The venue and catering team will work together seamlessly. You’ll typically have one point of contact to coordinate the venue, catering and rental details which makes things easier for you. However, if there is a certain caterer you’d like to work with or you have a specific vision in mind (like food trucks), you’ll want to look for a venue that allows outside vendors. 

 

COMPARE APPLES TO APPLES

The frustrating thing about the wedding venue search is that you’re usually comparing apples to oranges. All venues include distinctive services and packages, so as you research, try to organize the information in a way that’s easy for you to understand and compare. 

 

TRUST YOUR INSTINCT

As true with most decisions, if something feels right (or on the other hand, doesn't feel quite right) you should trust your instinct! Look at the big picture - while you may not like every single thing about the venue, if the pros outweigh the cons it’s likely a good fit for you.  Make sure you feel comfortable with the staff, as they are going to be the ones to ensure your day runs smoothly. Be sure to check out online reviews!  

 

BOOK IT

Request a contract and take the time to read it thoroughly. Confirm your agreement of date, times and details to be provided by the venue are in writing. Be sure to understand all the terms, fees, restrictions and cancellation policy. Now it’s time to sign the contract and pay your deposit to officially lock in your date! 

Congratulations, you can check this important step off your planning checklist!  Your remaining details will start falling into place now that you’ve made this big decision.