Where to get married in Baltimore?
October 1, 2010 1:32 PM   Subscribe

My sister is looking for a wedding venue in the Baltimore, MD area; do you have any great suggestions?

She would like to get married next year either in the May-June or September-October regions. She intends to have approximately 100 guests and wants to keep to a budget (she thinks 5-10k, but she's still figuring that out). She would like a place where she can have both a ceremony and a reception. She is concerned about having an indoor option in case of exciting weather. They are planning on having a non-denominational ceremony and intend to find their own person to perform it. They likely do not want to have it in a church. She is not associated with any colleges/universities/associations in the area, if that's relevant.

Any great ideas for a place for her wedding or general Baltimore-area wedding-related ideas would be greatly appreciated (especially how to keep her from uttering the dreaded words, "sea foam green bridesmaid dress.")
posted by sciencegeek to Grab Bag (20 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: I know a few people who have done it at the National Aquarium. No idea what it would cost, but it's a beautiful venue.
posted by 2bucksplus at 1:38 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: The National Aquarium is awesome, but when I contacted them a few months ago for a quote, I think the prices started at around $6400. I don't believe that included catering.

If you're willing to go into DC, a friend of mine was married at the Newseum, out on the balcony, overlooking the Capitol building, and it was awesome. Bonus: Wolfgang Puck catering is really delicious. I'm not sure what the price was, but I know they had a relatively small budget.
posted by specialagentwebb at 1:52 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: I went to a wedding a few years ago at, I think, the American Visionary Art Museum. They have a bar at the top for the reception that has some outdoor space and an indoor space for a dance floor. I'd guess there were 50-75 guests and the place was a great intimate size for that.
posted by davextreme at 1:54 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: We had our wedding at the Howard County Conservancy. It's <$2k, would fit the guest # perfectly, indoor and outdoor are both beautiful, great for photos, we used an outside caterer without issue, and it's not far from Baltimore city. Feel free to memail me if I can be of more help.
posted by rabidsegue at 2:00 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: I used to live near the giant Scottish Rite Masonic Temple on North Charles. It's a beautiful building, has some outdoor space, and is frequently used as a wedding venue. No idea how much it would cost, but might be worth a look.

As far as I know, the city owns the building and it is no longer a functioning Masonic temple, but I'm not sure about that. The weddings I saw were certainly ethnically and religiously diverse.

I've also seen weddings near the Washington Monument / Peabody. I don't know if it's possible, but the Peabody library would be a gorgeous indoor ceremony space.
posted by charmcityblues at 2:10 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: The Cylburn Arboretum is very nice, and has indoor and outdoor spaces.

AVAM is great, and the area where the restaurant used to be is very nice.
posted by OmieWise at 2:16 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: Less than an hour from Baltimore: The Ceresville Mansion.
posted by imjustsaying at 2:24 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: My friends' reception was at the Evergreen House. I've attended a formal event at the Cloisters Castle, where Will & Jada Pinkett Smith married. Depending on tastes (I suppose everything is!), the Baltimore Museum of Art would be an interesting spot. The Walters would be a bit pricier. The Brewer's Art has beer. When googling around to find out if one could get married at Camden Yards, I found this page which may or may not be worth anything. Finally, my favorite so far in this nostalgic tour is the zoo with some gorgeous buildings -- not the monkey-house -- to have events in, and seemingly affordable?

AVAM would be a very cool space, if she could swing that, too...

This is a thread I'd love to see a follow-up to whenever she chooses a spot!
posted by knile at 3:25 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: I'm getting married soon in Baltimore myself, so I've looked into this a bit. I second AVAM, at least from the anecdotes of my friends who've attended weddings there, and it has a new restaurant that replaced the old one. It's in a beautiful location with very scenic harbor & skyline views, and there's quite a bit to look at inside the museum itself. This is an urban location, and is walkable (and water taxi-able) from a host of downtown hotels, bars, and restaurants--and all things touristy. But the museum itself is not touristy, at not mainstream touristy.

Evergreen House is in north Baltimore, adjacent to Loyola University, and is owned by Johns Hopkins University. They do a lot of weddings in this old country manor house. They also do Shakespeare outdoors in the summer. It's woodsy and beautiful over there.

The Elm, in Hampden, is a wonderful funky space. I attended the wedding of close friends there a couple of years ago. Their web site (www.the-elm.com) is down, but here's a tiny review from the City Paper. Utterly charming. Outdoor garden plus inside event space in a funky, artist/hipster-meets-millworker neighborhood. Feels like an art gallery hauled off and set up shop in a treehouse.

Baltimore's Style magazine has a weddings issue every January, and I believe past issues are online, though the site's not well organized. And Baltimore magazine has many, many ads and articles that directly or indirectly advertise/showcase venues for weddings & events. I'd tell your sister to pay particular attention to restaurants she likes and ask them about renting their space and doing it there. 100 people is a good number to potentially rent out an entire smaller place for an evening.
posted by ImproviseOrDie at 3:33 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: I went to a beautiful wedding about that size and price range at the Fredrick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park building. Exposed brick, harbor views on three sides, newly restored, and close to everything.
posted by purpleclover at 3:46 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: Thirding AVAM.
posted by contessa at 5:40 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: Ooh, the railroad museum!!
posted by Leezie at 6:38 PM on October 1, 2010

Best answer: I went to a beautiful wedding at the Peabody Library. Might be a notch too big and too expensive, but worth a look.
posted by escabeche at 7:48 PM on October 1, 2010

Response by poster: Once again, I am amazed at the power of Metafilter. These are all great suggestions and when I get a chance to talk to my sister about them I'll let you know what she thinks. Updates will abound.

If it were my wedding, I'd be very much into the AVAM. I've gone to it twice while visiting Baltimore and it is just so much fun and awesome all at once. But if I do get married I want to elope and have a BBQ in a park because weddings are a bit insane.
posted by sciencegeek at 6:33 AM on October 2, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I have heard good things about The Walters Museum as a wedding venue.

The sculpture court is quite beautiful.
posted by jason's_planet at 7:04 AM on October 2, 2010

Best answer: My wedding was at Overhills Manor in Catonsville. Very close to the city and a great spot. It's indoors, but also has prity grounds. The staff were also very helpful on our wedding day.

One note--you do need to use their caterer. The food was very good.

posted by nalyd at 3:37 PM on October 2, 2010

Best answer: I have no idea what the costs are like, but I once attended a wedding at the Strong Mansion on Sugarloaf Mountain (in northern Montgomery County). It was absolutely gorgeous -- the ceremony and reception were held in the "back yard" of the mansion, overlooking rural farmland from halfway up the side of the mountain.
posted by Alterscape at 12:37 AM on October 3, 2010

Best answer: I am not married to nalyd (as far as I know), but I was also married at Overhills Mansion and recommend it highly.
posted by cheapskatebay at 11:10 AM on October 3, 2010

Best answer: My DC/MD friends' go-to venue for inexpensive wedding awesomeness has been the Adelphi Mill. It rents for under $1000 with discounts for Montgomery and PG County residents (if that applies). (rental details here.) It has an upstairs, a downstairs and a pretty garden. The space has beautiful stone walls, rafters and wood floors and is bare inside so you can do what you like with it. I really enjoyed the wedding I went to there.
posted by Pallas Athena at 7:00 AM on October 5, 2010

Response by poster: Update, inspired by this Metatalk thread:
My sister is getting married at the Howard County Conservatory (mentioned above by rabidsegue) sometime in September. I am now spending a certain amount of time looking for bridesmaid dresses. They are mainly ugly and will no doubt prompt an askme from me fairly soon.
posted by sciencegeek at 4:19 PM on February 25, 2011

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