Location, Location, Location

The hinge in the wedding planning was where it was going to happen. Two main considerations for choosing our venue: environmental considerations, and simplicity. Luckily, the two go hand in hand. We also worked with a tight timeline, about 5 months in the planning process.

Eco-Friendly Considerations

We wanted to pick a local business, with a preference for a local brewery, since beer is going to be a main staple of our reception. We also wanted somewhere central, and close to a place we could host an outdoor ceremony, to reduce the driving that people will do to get there. Somewhere that will take care of all aspects – food, drinks, decoration, AV, etc – reduces the transportation costs of bringing those things in. And a place that looks nice in itself won’t require decorations and flowers, things that are produced just for one day, and then discarded. Also, somewhere with good vegetarian food options was key.

Simplicity

Neither my partner nor I are the type to go crazy for the trappings of weddings. Decorations? Nope. Seating chart? No thanks. Flowers? What for? All of those details just make planning the event work, instead of fun. So it was important to us to find somewhere that would take care of as much of the details as possible, without that becoming crazy expensive. Finding a place that just looks nice all on it’s own is key, and that provides as many of the details as possible, just reduces our stress about things we don’t care about. Although I may have loved having an outdoor wedding at a farm, in the end, having to deal with things like catering, chair/tent rentals, liquor licenses, transportation, and everything else just wouldn’t make it worth it.

Ceremony Reception Combo

Ceremony location

Ceremony location

We were keen to have our ceremony outdoors. Both M and I are outdoorsy types, and, at least to me, it just seems right to say our vows outside, in a park. But we didn’t want to have to deal with people driving to one location, then driving to another (bad carbon footprint!), or renting some kind of bus to move everyone along. The ideal was somewhere that had both a reception location and ceremony venue within walking distance. We also want to keep the ceremony short and simple, with guests standing and no walking-down-the-aisle.

Where We Landed

After some wandering, exploring, and a pub crawl in Gastown (I know, the hardships), we narrowed it down to two locations. Granville Island Brewery was a fantastic option, which would have been funky and allowed us to get all sustainable, veggie catering from Savoury City, but unfortunately, their liquor license currently restricts them to 6 such events per year. So we’ve ended up at Steamworks Brewery, on the edge of Gastown.

Keeping the Eco-Theme

Steamworks Harbour View Room

Steamworks Harbour View Room

Although Steamworks’ veggie menu was limited, the event manager worked with us to provide an all vegetarian menu, with a few vegan options, and is a local brewery. A 5 minute walk (through Waterfront station) will connect us to Crab Park at Portside, an oceanside park in the city with great views of the mountains and city, where we will have our ceremony.

In our invitation and follow up directions, we have encouraged our guests to take transit where possible. Although I have no idea how many of them will take me up on it (I take buses to other people’s weddings, but I may be in a minority), we made the venue accessible by being very central. Also, parking is expensive downtown Vancouver, so hopefully that discourages people! Most of our out of town guests are staying at a hotel across the street.

Although I do think that we could have found somewhere that fit our bill a little better, I think we’ve done a pretty good job in keeping with what is important to us. I will work on keeping waste low by hopefully limiting straw use!

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One response to this post.

  1. […] your carbon footprint? This was on the mind of Karly Pinch as she and her partner were deciding on their wedding venue. They wanted to keep thing simple, hosting the ceremony and reception in the same place, and they […]

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