Having attended several weddings in recent years, I wasn’t too surprised to learn that the number of ceremonies and receptions held in non-traditional venues – including historic homes, museums and parks – is on the rise. In fact, according to The Knot Real Weddings Study, only 22 percent of nuptials were held in religious institutions in 2017.
Thankfully, Flint & Genesee is well-positioned to take advantage of this growing trend. After all, the region is home to several unique places to say, “I do.”
Take, for instance, the Flint Farmers’ Market. Located in the heart of downtown Flint, the 32,000-square-foot facility is bright and airy. With three event spaces indoors and an expansive rooftop terrace available during the summer months, the market offers couples the opportunity to create a one-of-a-kind experience on their big day.
In the nearby Flint Cultural Center, couples can get married under the stars regardless of the time of day. The dome inside the Longway Planetarium can display anything from constellations to favorite photos.
Creative couples can have their nuptials surrounded by great works of art at the Flint Institute of Arts. Options include the 330-seat theater, which houses a light painting, or light-based art installation, by Stephen Knapp; Isabel Hall, which is furnished with paintings from the museum’s permanent collection; and the lobby, which features sculptures from Calder, Chihuly and Pfaff.
For beer and wine enthusiasts, I recommend checking out the Fenton Winery and Brewery. Not only is all catering handled in-house, the allinclusive venue offers an impressive craft beer and wine bar.
And for those with a love of the outdoors, Genesee County Parks offers a wide variety of options. You might consider exchanging vows on the iconic rock bridge in Davison’s Richfield County Park or surrounded by maple trees in For-Mar Nature Preserve & Arboretum. Or, you could head to Crossroads Village for a ceremony aboard the historic Genesee Belle. If you’re getting married and aren’t sure where to start, give the Flint & Genesee Convention and Visitors Bureau a call at (810) 600-1404.
In addition to making suggestions for wedding venues, our team can help secure room blocks at local hotels. We can also provide you with a list of Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce members who specialize in catering, photography and more.
Several of our members also belong to the Genesee County Bridal Alliance, which will host its annual Wedding Marketplace event on Sunday, Jan. 28 at the Captain’s Club at Woodfield in Grand Blanc. There, you can learn about different venues, small businesses and service providers located right here in Genesee County.
Once you have a vision, I encourage you to consider local options for your wedding. We’re lucky to have a number of unique venues and talented wedding professionals in Flint & Genesee – what better place is there to celebrate your big day?
DeAndra Larkin is group vice president at the Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce.