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New and Now: Wisconsin Wedding Venues of the Moment
What’s your wedding-day style? Do you yearn for a rustic-chic barn wedding? Maybe a city scene is more your speed—how about a building steeped in history and character? No matter what you envision for your special day, there’s a new Wisconsin wedding venue to meet—and exceed—your expectations. Let’s take a look at a few of our favorites.
Donald and Carol Kress Pavilion
Where: 7845 Church St., Egg Harbor
Why it’s hot: Attention, book lovers: This is the only library in Door County where couples can exchange vows. But the space is about more than literary love—the pavilion welcomes guests with sweeping views of bay sunsets and surrounding orchards.
What to know: Natural light, high ceilings, exposed wood beams and wraparound porches are the key features of this Door County venue. Situated downtown in the charming village of Egg Harbor, the building is a bright and modern venue with the library on the first floor and event space on the second floor that accommodates up to 250.
The Cupola Barn
Where: N88W35490 Mapleton Road, Oconomowoc
Why it’s hot: The Cupola Barn is a restored 1840s barn that offers both indoor and outdoor events spaces. Rich in character, the barn’s historic nature is visible in the hatch marks and wooden nail pegs on the beams.
What to know: The owners reused as much of the original barn as possible. They repurposed the wood from the building’s loft to make the legs on the head table, benches around the fire pit and a wedding arch for outdoor ceremonies. Even the original stone from the barn was repurposed to create the venue’s fire pit. The venue accommodates 200 guests.
Chivaree on Park
Where: N8345 Park St., Ixonia
Why it’s hot: Built in the 1940s, Chivaree on Park is a newly renovated wedding and event venue that combines nostalgic elegance with industrial-glam design elements.
What to know: The versatile interior spaces can host everything from intimate dinners to wedding receptions for up to 720 guests. Founder and creative director Kristy Kimball, owner of Modern Bloom in Oconomowoc, kept many of the space’s original design and décor elements, including the original band stage, maple dance floors and velvet stage curtains.
Where: 405 Washington Ave., Oshkosh
Why it’s hot: Opening late this summer, the aesthetic of the Howard preserves the elegant details of classic Tudor revival-style architecture. Adding modern amenities and high-quality finishes elevates the character and ambiance of the venue’s spaces.
What to know: The venue can accommodate up to 350 guests. Unique qualities of the Howard—formerly the historic Eagles Club of Oshkosh—include a boutique bowling alley on the lower level; the alley isn’t available for private rental, but the lanes provide space for guests to socialize pre- or post-reception in a sophisticated yet relaxed environment.
The Ivy House (pictured below)
Where: 906 S. Barclay St., Milwaukee
Why it’s hot: The Ivy House, opening this summer, is a modern-industrial indoor/outdoor space with a huge patio garden bar in the heart of Milwaukee’s hip Walker’s Point neighborhood.
What to know: The venue carries the “living green” element inside with plants galore and natural lighting, connecting the spectacular 7,000-square-foot Fernweh patio garden bar (the name means “wanderlust in German) and Cream City brick warehouse-style ballroom. Designed and run by 20-year wedding industry vets Ramsey Renno and Tyler Curran of Milwaukee Airwaves, the Ivy House boasts a ballroom that seats 250 for dinner and 400 for a standing reception.
Where: 1950 S. Ridge Road, Green Bay
Why it’s hot: Surrounded by lush landscaping, the Lodge Kohler courtyard provides a stunning backdrop for warm-weather weddings. Packer fans love the proximity to Lambeau Field; those seeking relaxation love the hotel’s Kohler Waters Spa. The hotel’s fifth-floor bar/restaurant with outdoor patio is a great spot for a pre-rehearsal cocktail.
What to know: The courtyard is a gorgeous outdoor space, perfect for everything from wedding ceremonies and receptions to rehearsal dinners and engagement parties. The space accommodates up to 150 guests for a wedding ceremony and up to 72 for a reception/dinner.
Where: 6610 W. North Ave., Wauwatosa
Why it’s hot: Birch is the brainchild of the Sound By Design team, which also manages the Atrium in Shorewood and Camp Bar in Milwaukee and Wauwatosa. In fact, Birch shares a common wall with Camp Bar Tosa, allowing for an easy transition after ceremonies, receptions and rehearsal dinners.
What to know: Opening this summer, Birch is divided into four areas—the main indoor event space, bar/lounge area, outdoor year-round porch overlooking lush gardens and a large outdoor patio. The versatility of these spaces allows for a plethora of configurations for weddings that welcome up to 265 guests.
Where: 370 County Road A, Baraboo
Why it’s hot: Minutes from Wisconsin Dells, Vennebu Hill overlooks the gorgeous Baraboo bluffs and Wisconsin River. The venue blends elements of rustic wedding barns, the elegance of a European barn and state-of-art event facilities. Its history and style are infused with Norwegian-inspired stories and designs.
What to know: In Norwegian, vennebu means “a gathering space for family and friends.” Opening this summer, Vennebu Hill is an all-season venue, offering two main indoor event spaces and a 350-person seated capacity. The ceremony space is separate from dining and cocktail spaces, so guests can enjoy seamless transitions from space to space. At night, the 8-foot centerpiece chandelier sets the Gothic details aglow.
The Mill (pictured above, photo by Alexis Ryan Photography)
Where: 646 Banks St., Chetek
Why it’s hot: The Mill is a unique modern-industrial event venue in the heart of Dairyland. Spaces include the 100-year-old Quonset Ballroom and the rugged-chic Bin Room, all brought to life by owner and designer Nancy Helms.
What to know: The nearly 6,000-square-foot structure encompasses several areas that can be separated for individual events. The 1,500-square-foot Bin Room exudes a 21st-century lounge vibe, with modern chandeliers, sofa seating and cozy lighting. The Quonset, a 2,800-square-foot ballroom, is all about vintage charm with handcrafted Gothic-style arches and grand chandeliers. The Mill can accommodate up to 296 guests.