After unexpectedly losing our first wedding venue (as described in my previous post), Mr. C and I were forced to start our search anew. It was frustrating to start over, especially because Mr. C and I were about to start the new school year. We definitely don’t have a lot of time during the school year to drive around and interview vendors.
After touring three venues we did not visit during our first search, we decided to check out a lead on a brand new venue in our area. In fact, it was so new that at the time it didn’t have a website nor had it held any weddings! One of our good friends is married to an event planner at a local hotel and she heard through the vendor grapevine that a catering company had recently purchased a property about 20 minutes from our home. It sounded very promising.
The venue is called Cloverleaf Farm and it is owned and operated by A Divine Event catering, which is based out of Atlanta. They own several properties in Atlanta and Northeast Georgia that they use for weddings and other events. Cloverleaf Farm is their latest acquisition, and when we visited them in July they were busy landscaping, painting, and fixing up an old barn on the property. We were given the grand tour and I saw limitless potential! There are so many amazing options, and it meant we could get married outside, under the trees, and hold the reception inside the sprawling 150-year-old home. No need for tents! I loved all the fields and trees, the rambling wooden fences, the sweet silence of the countryside. We loved the look inside the house too—worn wooden floors, high ceilings, a dramatic staircase, and stunning chandeliers. The event coordinator was awesome. I could tell she loved the property and she was so excited to show us around and explain their plans.
At first I did not like the idea of having tables and guests spread throughout the house and not grouped together in one room or under one tent. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized how lovely it would be to attend a wedding with that type of layout. You could wander and mingle about the house. You could sit and have a private conversation in one room, or sip a cocktail out on the lawn to escape the hustle and bustle inside. We could have the dance floor in the large main room and the cake table in the entryway. I also thought about our families—both my fiance and I come from families of divorce. Our moms are not exactly friendly (or even on speaking terms) with our stepmothers. The more spread out the guests, the better! In fact, I was dreading having both of our families crammed under one tent. This seemed like the perfect solution. And if for some reason we change our minds, there is plenty of space on their property to set up a tent.
Cloverleaf Farm also met our other requirements: it was close by, and we could serve our own alcohol and choose our own vendors with the exception of catering. Obviously a venue owned by a catering company would want you to use their catering services. A Divine Event is known for locally obtained and seasonal ingredients. They also take pride in simple and classic food presentation. When we consulted our friend’s wife about this company she told us that they are one of the best in Athens. I was so excited to hear that! You see, initially catering wasn’t one of our top priorities, but because we got such a great deal on the venue rental, we were able to fit this classy caterer into our budget. We went from settling with mediocre food to booking one of the best caterers in town. This is when I realized that, just as they say, all things happen for a reason. The previous venue snafu was justified in our finding Cloverleaf Farm and all the amazingly professional people we’ve worked with through them.
Not long after our first visit to Cloverleaf Farm, Mr. C and I signed a contract and mailed in a deposit check. It felt great to simultaneously check off both the venue and the caterer. I was also relieved to have finally settled our venue drama once and for all, and with a set date and location I could finally move forward with booking our other vendors.
Right now I’m excited because Cloverleaf Farm is holding their first wedding this fall, and I can’t wait to see pictures on their Facebook page! To think that we will be there in just eight short months, pledging our lives to each other, is just too good to be true.