Nestled among the ranches and farmland in Berthoud, Colorado is a charming wedding venue that doubles as a garden sanctuary.
Do you like arbors with dangly vines with smelly flowers on them? Would you like a venue with water features, such as a babbling brook and mini-waterfall? Then add this one to your list of front range venues that should be not be missed. I personally love old houses that have turned into wedding venues. The history lends itself to the ambiance and gives off warm, classic vibes. At Brookside, there are two getting-ready spaces for each wedding party. They sit on the second floor of the house, connected by a narrow deck. Both rooms have high-pitched ceilings that offer just the right amount of light, but allow for nice shadowing.
When the bride leaves her room, she glides down a wide set of stairs, through a garden arbor tunnel, making a slight turn, and then enters her wedding aisle. This is a particularly long "aisle", but as a photographer, you have to make multiple decisions along the way to capture each portion of the processional. It would be beneficial to have a second shooter staged at some point to avoid moving to various locations along the aisle, potentially causing a distraction to the guests.
I suppose I am sensitive to this notion of distraction, and ever since I received the complement that I was a "photography ninja who was everywhere and nowhere at the same time", I realized that people really do appreciate it when you aren't that photographer who ends up lying on the aisle floor trying to get some special angle. It is very important to the guest experience that you are able to disappear into the shadows while still getting the shot. Ninjas are cool like that.
The ceremony space is a large open air oval, encircled by arbors. This really makes a beautiful visual statement and does a good job of encapsuling all of the attendees. Now this wouldn't be a blog post of mine, if I didn't mention lighting. In a sunny day circumstance, there is virtually no way of avoiding hard shadows and this is because of it's circular nature and overall ceremony direction. This isn't a deal-breaker, but just be aware that even though your photographer may be a ninja, there really isn't anyway to avoid potentially strange arbor patterns across the guests faces or wedding party. Honestly, I'm just nit-picking here, but if there was a way you could view your potential venue space near your wedding date (or a year prior) where you could judge the lighting for yourself and consider the angle in which your altar would be placed, then perhaps your guests (and photographer) would thank you. Or, just hope for a semi-shady day and the wedding world will be complete again.
Without a doubt, Brookside Garden Event Center has a ton to offer couples. This is especially true if you have a very large wedding guest list, because this venue can handle it. The reception space is divided with one area for dining (complete with chandeliers), and wood-paneled area for dancing and an accompanying bar for drinking. I know that this is an area of wedding planning that couples are pretty specific about. The decision to have your dining-dancing area combined so guests at their tables can still see the dancefloor vs. splitting the two areas up for guests who prefer quieter moments during the party. This is specific to each wedding and something to consider when choosing the space that fits your party perfectly. Also, if you love having an outdoor space for guests to get a breath of fresh air, the twinkle lights at Brookside come on for those who want to mingle alfresco. There is also the option to open the reception "garage doors" on warm summer nights to allow the breeze to float through. The entire venue is very villa-esque with hints of country-chic, and a worthwhile stop on your wedding location journey.