Washington Center for the Performing Arts
Tin Can Alley

Wedding venue selection tips

  1.  Your wedding date will determine if you can have an indoor or outdoor wedding. Insider tip: For outdoor summer weddings in the South Sound, always order a tent (for shade or rain).  Call CORT Party Rentals in Fife or Celebrations in Lacey.
  2.  Is there a place that’s meaningful to you as a couple or to one of you, such as your place of worship, where you could hold the wedding and / or reception? If not, is there a location / venue that would be meaningful to you?  Insider tip: There are a few churches that will marry non-members. In Olympia, visit The United Churches of Olympia. It has a beautiful sanctuary.
  3. Where are your families and guests coming from for your wedding? Choose a location nearest to where they will be coming from, or a location in between. If they are coming from Seattle and Portland, consider Olympia, Chehalis or Centralia.
  4. What’s your theme? Casual or formal? When you know your theme, it will help determine a venue. For example, if you want a vintage-farm theme, visit the farm venues. If you want formal, look at the full-service venues with in-house catering.  
  5. What is your budget for venues? It may be more cost effective to choose one venue for the wedding and reception. Ask for price quotes.
  6. How to research: Review the South Sound venues and caterers on this site in the Wedding Resources. They are from wedding and reception venues and caterers from South King, Pierce, Thurston, Kitsap, Mason, Lewis, Jefferson and Grays Harbor counties.
  7. Contact your local visitor and convention bureau and tell them what you are looking for (wedding and reception venues, number of guests, date, food type, etc.) and they will put together a request for proposal (RFP) and send it to their members. There is no cost to you and it saves you from calling each company. See our website for lists (Wedding Resources, Honeymoon).

Click on a photo to enlarge.

Published on April 29, 2016.

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