Post # 1
I am very, very new to this website but ive already read so many helpful posts! I got engaged over Christmas and my fiance and I are trying to put together at least the basics of our wedding – we want to get married in September of 2013, and knowing that things get booked up fast we’ve been trying to get at least a few things together ASAP.
I knew I wanted to get married at a local farm. For years ive been very involved in the organic farming scene here around Utica, NY (central NY) and it meant a lot to me to have my whole wedding in that environment. Just a rustic, simple event with wildflower bouquets and me in cowgirl boots ; )
Finding a venue was pretty easy. We called upon friends of ours, and my wonderful friend Suzie volunteered her family’s gorgeous dairy farm (goats only…they also have lots of chickens) for both our ceremony and reception. Up on a hill with fantastic view of a the valley one one side and higher hills on the other, the venue is perfect. We are planning an outdoor ceremony, followed by a tented reception (with a floor and walkway up to the tent) in one of the hay fields (that will be cut and mowed for the event). If the weather ends up being absolutely horrible, they have a huge, clean hay barn that they have graciously offered to us as a back up plan.
So heres my question, or questions: im trying to think of issues that I will have to deal with because im using a farm venue. Already issues have been brought up about mud, people in high heels, wind (although they get surprisingly little wind up there because of the differential terrain levels) and other weather issues.
I know there are lots of you who have had or been to farm weddings: what kinds of things ended up being issues for you? what have you noticed at farm weddings that could have gone better? I want to make sure im covering as many sides of this as possible because I know this will be very DIY and (happily) unconventional.
thanks for any help you can give!
Post # 3
bathroom facilities. i think that will be the biggest hurdle for you.
are you planning on renting some porta potties? really, other than the bathroom issue (and parking issues can get to be a drag somewhere that doesn’t have a proper parking lot) I think it should go fine.
Post # 4
yep, were going to do porta-potties.
the farmers and I spoke about parking, and while they have had large amounts of guests parrking all over the field during farm events, we might opt for a different route. we have a lot of out of town guests that will hopefully be staying at one hotel – because of parking, directions, and drunk driving issues, we are considering bussing people to the farm from the hotel to cut down on driving/parking stress. that way, there will be parking available for our in-town guests at the farm.
Post # 5
i’m not helpful but I just wanted to say I live in Syracuse, NY and this sounds amazing!
Post # 6
I got married on our family farm. It was lovely. No issues at all. Just choose your shoes carefully. The heels will quickly sink into the mud. I probably would have chosen flats if I could do that over.
Post # 7
Electricity. Where is it coming from? You might want to consider some generators (there is a Honda2000 something or other that is super duper quiet that we used) as cables can only hold so much power before they blow. Also, catering facilities. Will you have a grill set up? Will they need refrigeration?
Sounds exciting!! 🙂
Post # 8
were working on the electricity thing – i think there is a generator available for our use, and they are willing to work with us on that. the only thing I can think of that we would need electricity for is music, although honestly I would rather have a local band or musical friends of ours with instruments supply the music. But my fiance, a bit more traditional than I, wants to be able to dance to certain songs.
we havent decided on what were doing about food yet. since they are a dairy farm and make cheese on the premise, they have a huge walk in cooler that our caterer can use if need be. i guess well have to figure out what kind of food we want and deal with those issues! thank you for bringing that up!
Post # 9
farm weddings are very common around here, and i think the biggest concerns are always bathrooms. my cousin got married last summer though and there was both a male and female porta-potty and also a hand-washing station and they were very clean so it wasnt so bad. another concern is always heating/cooling. i had another cousin get married in september and it was absolutely freezing by dinner time. it could also be very hot where you live and i’ve seen problems with flies all over the food before.
Post # 10
You say it is a diary farm so that means cows. The smell at some diary farms can be bad and you will also need to find out if they will be clearing the area of the cow pats as well. You don’t want guests walking in that.
Is the barn(or whatever you are using) water tight? Rain wont just be a problem with mud but a leaking roof as well.
I would also check out/clean the cooler. If they have been storing uncooked meat in there you don’t want to be putting your guests food/drinks in there without a proper clean out.
Post # 11
its a goat farm, no cows. its a hay field wed be having the event in, not a grazing pasture, so no poop. the barn is not adjacent to the field wed be in, its far enough away that the smell wont be close.
we are having a tent with flooring and side panels that can drop down if its raining. not sure if the barn is water tight, but I was hoping to use it only if there was an extreme wind issue. i will check on that though.
they only use the cooler for cheese, but im sure if we need the cooler we will do a good clean out.
Post # 12
@winkyfish: I would also check out the surrounding farms. If they have smelly animals (pig/cows) the smell can carry along way especially on a windy day. Just something to consider as you may need to ask them to use different paddocks for the day of and before.
Post # 13
Issues I have encountered:
- bathrooms (need to put someone on cleanup duty as porta potties can go downhill fast. Twice hourly check will suffice.)
- electricity (you need a way to keep food hot. a backup generator is nice as I have seen one fail before.)
- rain (make sure they have several round bales of hay available to spread for a path if things get real soupy.)
- heat (make sure you have several ice filled wheelbarrows or galvanized tubs filled with ice water and maybe purchase/make some paper fans.)
- sun (make sure you ceremony doesn’t take place in front of a setting sun lol, also depending on time of day have sunscreen handy.)
- flies (I have heard that soaking a sponge in pinesol and placing in a bowl acts as a flie repellant. Never tried it though.)
- fleas (I have been to weddings on farms and been eaten up by fleas. Scatter Diataneous (sp?) earth on all surrounding area. Safe and rids area of fleas.)
- wind (secure tent well in case of freak storm)
- cold (shouldn’t happen but if forcast looks ominous those propane heat lamps work well.)
- parking (the only issue I have seen is with really low slung cars. A seperate flatter area can be designated for sports cars.)
- bats (check barn and area for bats.)
- mosquitoes (if they are prevalent there you may want to treat the area and provide off wipes.)
Sounds like fun! Any issue can be worked around with a little pre-planning
-From a fellow dairy farmer 😉
Post # 14
I would look into getting the portable washrooms that are in a trailer (usually 2-3 stalls plus sink) rather than just portapotties. Although more expensive they are much nicer and are more like a ‘real’ washroom (on wheels) and do not have the smell of the portapotties.
Another thing you need to think about is lighting (which means electricity for this too not just the music!). If you are out in a field at night it will be quite dark (this is coming from a farm girl so I know! lol). You will not only need lighting for the tent but for any walkways and parking area as well.
Post # 15
WOW, thank you so much! im going to print off a copy of your post ; )
Post # 16
duh i forgot about electricity for the lighting! good call!