Location Frustration

Fred and I have had the darndest time finding a wedding location. Without going into it, we contacted over 25 locations before we found a place we liked that was willing to work with us. I think this is just obstacle number one in our plans for a non-traditional wedding, and I'm ok with that. Any standard wedding venue would have been easy, but that's just not our style. So where are we getting married? Stanley Park in Westfield, MA.

Great, easy, done! Fred played soccer at Stanley Park when he was a kid. Their herb garden is the perfect balance of unstructured natural beauty. The park has a number of different gardens that beg to be wandered, and we like the idea of our guests exploring the space before the ceremony starts. So we went to visit said herb garden this Columbus Day weekend, one year out from the wedding. And . . . . they mowed it down.

herb garden

Ugh. That's not to say it won't look beautiful next year at this time, assuming they wait to mow, but I would have felt better seeing it. So the search is back on! Luckily, there are other places in the park we could use. Should we get married by the tree? In the rose garden? By the burning bush? In front of the gazebo?


I think we're going with the gazebo view. Not because we're particularly into the gazebo wedding thing! Hey, from our vantage point we don't get to see the gazebo at all, and I kind of like it that way. But that area looks like I imagine the herb garden might. Lots of texture and structure, but a little undone as it's all gone to seed. It's also one of the more private spaces in the park, despite being adjacent to the rose garden.

Stanley Park, Westfield, MA

There's that long strip of grass you see above, but there's also a break in the garden opposite that gazebo view. Basically there's a T-shaped space where guests can sit (the park only allows 20 chairs) and stand around us. It moves towards the wedding-in-the-round idea that we like, with people on three sides, and I think everyone will be able to see that way.

Stanley Park, Westfield, MA

Maybe it's for the best that we changed locations! Anyway, I'm still really glad to be getting married at the park. Stay tuned for the next segment of "our slightly atypical wedding," when my Aunt Judy and I take on my biggest rival - the puffy white wedding dress. Showdown!

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