Author Topic: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?  (Read 21377 times)

SavingMon(k)ey

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Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« on: August 28, 2013, 03:15:53 PM »
Seattle Mustachians, I need your help. My partner and I are from Colorado, but will be getting married in Seattle in October or November, since CO is not a marriage equality state yet. This is going to be a tiny ceremony, as in a total of about 7 or 8 people. I know outdoors may be iffy that time of year, but does anybody have any suggestions on a good place to go that's free or inexpensive to rent? It is going to be a civil ceremony. Many thanks!

mulescent

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2013, 03:27:39 PM »
My suggestions, with comments:

The municipal court (http://www.seattle.gov/courts/judmag/marriage.htm).  You can't control the ceremony, but it's very cheap.

As on Craigslist.  Sure, you will probably have to sort though a bunch of silly responses, but I bet someone will step up and offer a classy house/venue/whatever

Municipal indoor spaces (http://www.seattle.gov/parks/facilities/rentals/).  Some of these look awesome (Japanese teahouse, for example), and the rates seem reasonable.

A VRBO house.  This will be cheap, and some of them have pretty dramatic decks/main rooms/etc.  Plus, you and your guests can stay there!

Any of the many fine, small restaurants we have here.  This will probably cost thousands, but still much cheaper than a rented, catered venue.

Good luck, and feel free to PM me if you have Seattle-specific questions.

Lans Holman

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2013, 03:56:14 PM »
This may be totally crazy, but if I were doing a wedding that small in Seattle I think it would be fun to do it on the deck of one of the ferries.  You would have amazing views.  Not much for privacy, obviously, but afterward you could go out to dinner on Bainbridge or Vashon, then ride back.  Just trying to think outside the box here.  Also, congratulations, and here's hoping Colorado won't be too far behind.

SavingMon(k)ey

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2013, 09:04:24 PM »
My suggestions, with comments:

The municipal court (http://www.seattle.gov/courts/judmag/marriage.htm).  You can't control the ceremony, but it's very cheap. We would like to have a pretty custom ceremony when it comes to wording, so we're actually going with a Unitarian minister.

As on Craigslist.  Sure, you will probably have to sort though a bunch of silly responses, but I bet someone will step up and offer a classy house/venue/whatever An idea I hadn't thought of. You are right about silly responses, probably. Maybe even mean ones... Will think about it.

Municipal indoor spaces (http://www.seattle.gov/parks/facilities/rentals/).  Some of these look awesome (Japanese teahouse, for example), and the rates seem reasonable. I checked out the teahouse, but unfortunately they only rent it out for tea ceremonies. :( That would have been awesome.

A VRBO house.  This will be cheap, and some of them have pretty dramatic decks/main rooms/etc.  Plus, you and your guests can stay there! Ooooo... Now, that right there...

Any of the many fine, small restaurants we have here.  This will probably cost thousands, but still much cheaper than a rented, catered venue. Unfortunately, thousands is way out of our league. We are planning on a nice dinner though.

Good luck, and feel free to PM me if you have Seattle-specific questions. Thanks!


This may be totally crazy, but if I were doing a wedding that small in Seattle I think it would be fun to do it on the deck of one of the ferries.  You would have amazing views.  Not much for privacy, obviously, but afterward you could go out to dinner on Bainbridge or Vashon, then ride back.  Just trying to think outside the box here.  Also, congratulations, and here's hoping Colorado won't be too far behind.
Wouldn't the weather be most likely be wet and cruddy that time of year, though? Also, our officiant charges quite a bit extra do go on boats/islands. I like the outside the box thinking, though.

And thanks, Lans! Colorado has Civil Unions... Close, but no cigar. We'll get there...



Roses

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2013, 09:36:48 PM »
Congratulations!!  I'd do a courthouse wedding and then reserve a private room at a restaurant - or just a large table since it's such a small group.  If you reserve a private room maybe you could even have the ceremony in the restaurant.  If you let me know what kind of food you like I could suggest some places.  I think most 'wedding venues' would be way too big and pricey for your small group.  However, the Japanese tea house idea sounds pretty awesome.

pirate_wench

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2013, 09:46:52 AM »
I would suggest Golden Gardens Park, in Ballard (neighborhood in North Seattle).  It's a large beach park.  If the weather is nice, you can have your ceremony on the beach for free, and if it is not good, you can hide under one of the bbq/picnic shelters.

You can officially reserve one of the shelters from the city of Seattle, but may not be necessary that time of year.  They also have the "bathhouse" that people rent all the time for larger weddings, but probably wouldn't be necessary for your small ceremony.

After the ceremony, you can go to Ray's Boathouse just a few blocks down the street for continued great views, and get a nice dinner.  Good seafood (or so I hear), and a few vegetarian options. If you go at happy hour, they have a decent happy hour menu.  Make sure to reserve upstairs in the bar though.

Or stay at Golden Gardens and have a bonfire and bbq in one of the firepits! Ignore alcohol rule, and just pour your beers in a plastic cup. Some people don't even worry that much.

I hope you have great time in Seattle.  Congratulations.

tomsang

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2013, 09:57:19 AM »
I second Pirate_Wench's recommendation.  Golden Gardens would be a great spot.  Get a shelter, set up a bon fire, and have million dollar views if the day is half decent.  Otherwise, you will have a blast with family and friends.  If you are nimble, you can reserve a shelter and if the weather is completely miserable then switch to an indoor venue. 

Congrats!

Roland of Gilead

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #7 on: August 29, 2013, 11:26:23 AM »
I would suggest my backyard, but it will probably be underwater in November (usually is...sometimes I can fish for salmon from my back deck :-)  but they are the living dead ).   You are correct that it will be rainy...August and September are very nice, October to April is when we all turn pasty white and wrinkled.

I will also suggest Golden Gardens though, or one of the many other parks in the area.  You can bring an umbrella since you are not native to Seattle.

Oh here is my backyard in August.  We don't always have bad weather!



Roses

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #8 on: August 29, 2013, 01:42:24 PM »
I would suggest my backyard, but it will probably be underwater in November (usually is...sometimes I can fish for salmon from my back deck :-)  but they are the living dead ).   You are correct that it will be rainy...August and September are very nice, October to April is when we all turn pasty white and wrinkled.

I will also suggest Golden Gardens though, or one of the many other parks in the area.  You can bring an umbrella since you are not native to Seattle.

Oh here is my backyard in August.  We don't always have bad weather!

Damn!  Where do you live?  This isn't Seattle!

I second the Golden Gardens suggestions above.  My only problem with that park is it gets really crowded.  It may not be a problem in October but if it's a nice day people still flock to it.  I tend to prefer the other parks along the same shoreline - Carkeek Park in Seattle and Richmond Beach Saltwater park in Shoreline (there seems to be a small wedding every time I go there).

Also the Washington Park Arboretum will be beautiful that time of year.  The Japanese Garden teahouse that was mentioned above is there and would be great.  But if you want to be inside the main part of the arboretum and take a nice stroll through Azalea Way you could have the ceremony in the visitor center.  It may be too big for your needs though.  I've always thought the lookout gazebo in the arboretum would be an awesome place for a tiny wedding.  There's a little protection from the elements since it's covered but it is still outside.  You can find it on this map: http://depts.washington.edu/uwbg/docs/ArboretumMap.jpghttp://depts.washington.edu/uwbg/docs/ArboretumMap.jpg

tomsang

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2013, 02:46:25 PM »
If you can move it up to September 21st, we can all join you!

Hi all.  Here is a link to the arboretum map
http://depts.washington.edu/uwbg/docs/ArboretumMap.jpg
I looked at potential meeting spots on the website and I think the Woodland Garden lawn between the two ponds sounds like a good place to meet.  Let's do it on September 21st at noon! I'll make sure I bring my big red mustache sign so we can find each other. Anyone is welcome!

yolfer

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2013, 02:59:15 PM »
If you can move it up to September 21st, we can all join you!

Hi all.  Here is a link to the arboretum map
http://depts.washington.edu/uwbg/docs/ArboretumMap.jpg
I looked at potential meeting spots on the website and I think the Woodland Garden lawn between the two ponds sounds like a good place to meet.  Let's do it on September 21st at noon! I'll make sure I bring my big red mustache sign so we can find each other. Anyone is welcome!

LOL! for those of you not also on the "Seattle? Oz?" thread, we're doing a meetup at the Arboretum on Sept 21st:

https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/meetups-and-social-events/seattle-oz/msg129362/#msg129362


Roland of Gilead

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #11 on: August 29, 2013, 08:32:13 PM »

Damn!  Where do you live?  This isn't Seattle!


close to Seattle though.  In the foothills of the cascades.  I can get to the city in 45 min or so.  I couldn't afford a riverfront (or lakefront) property in Seattle (like lake Washington or lake Union).

There is a somewhat touristy but good food ferry ride +

SavingMon(k)ey

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #12 on: August 31, 2013, 08:54:02 AM »
Thanks, guys, for the ideas. I'll check out some of those park and shelter ideas. Everybody seems to like the tea house idea, but I already checked it out and they don't allow weddings. :(

I would like to keep this simple, inexpensive, and pretty. :)

Noodle

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #13 on: September 01, 2013, 11:35:22 AM »
Try Kubota Garden, which belongs to the City of Seattle, and is a hidden treasure. It was created by a local Japanese resident and later donated to the city. I don't know if they have any sheltered spaces, but it is gorgeous (not as spiffy and convenient a neighborhood as the Arboretum, though.)

Also, the City of Seattle has a lot of pocket parks which would make a gorgeous spot for a tiny wedding. Queen Anne has several. (Not Kerry Park, that place is a madhouse). Bhy Kracke and Parsons Gardens are favorites of mine (Parsons doesn't have a view but it does have beautiful landscaping.)


pac_NW

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #14 on: September 01, 2013, 01:56:08 PM »
Try Kubota Garden, which belongs to the City of Seattle, and is a hidden treasure. It was created by a local Japanese resident and later donated to the city. I don't know if they have any sheltered spaces, but it is gorgeous (not as spiffy and convenient a neighborhood as the Arboretum, though.)

Also, the City of Seattle has a lot of pocket parks which would make a gorgeous spot for a tiny wedding. Queen Anne has several. (Not Kerry Park, that place is a madhouse). Bhy Kracke and Parsons Gardens are favorites of mine (Parsons doesn't have a view but it does have beautiful landscaping.)

And the view of Puget Sound across from Parson's Park is stunning - great for pictures.

desrever

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #15 on: September 01, 2013, 03:20:21 PM »
Parson's Garden is a pretty ideal spot. Used to live a couple blocks from there, it would have been my first choice for our wedding but we had too many guests. But the rental is expensive, $600 apparently, I remembered it being much cheaper five years ago.

Here's my suggestion: Volunteer Park Conservatory in capitol hill. Beautiful plants, covered roof. The fee is $500, apparently. No idea about availability.

There is an excellent little restaurant a couple blocks away, Volunteer Park Cafe, that usually only does dinner one night per month, but I dunno if they do private events, but you could maybe ask them if they might do a private event for you. And/or you can go out to party in Cap Hill afterwards.

SavingMon(k)ey

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2013, 08:47:48 PM »
I will check out your new suggestions, too. Thanks! So the courthouse wedding is actually more expensive than getting the minister to do it, unless you can pull off a weekday wedding (Mo-Th), which we probably can't because of our and witnesses jobs. The Volunteer Park thing sounds cool!

desrever

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #17 on: September 04, 2013, 10:03:50 AM »
I almost forgot: In WA, anyone can be an officiant (sign up online for free with the "Universal Life Church"; there is case law supporting the validity of this), so you can save money by having a friend do your ceremony. I did this when I got married; writing the script was one of the best parts of the wedding, and made it really feel like it was ours.

With 7-8 people you could probably do a guerilla wedding just about anywhere, not bother with a permit.

SavingMon(k)ey

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #18 on: September 04, 2013, 11:02:56 AM »
I almost forgot: In WA, anyone can be an officiant (sign up online for free with the "Universal Life Church"; there is case law supporting the validity of this), so you can save money by having a friend do your ceremony. I did this when I got married; writing the script was one of the best parts of the wedding, and made it really feel like it was ours.

With 7-8 people you could probably do a guerilla wedding just about anywhere, not bother with a permit.
Have thought about that option, but we only have a couple of friends in Seattle and we need them as witnesses. It would be a little weird to have some random person at our tiny wedding to be a witness. Lol! Oh, and I love the term "guerilla wedding."

tomsang

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #19 on: September 04, 2013, 02:06:33 PM »

Roland of Gilead

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #20 on: September 04, 2013, 05:55:52 PM »
People in Seattle for some reason are crazy about zombies and flash mobs.  If you wanted a zombie wedding, you could probably get 400 or so people to serve as witnesses.

Has there been a flash mob zombie wedding?  Would be very cool!  (if you don't know, I love The Walking Dead)

SavingMon(k)ey

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Re: Free/Inexpensive places for tiny wedding in Seattle?
« Reply #21 on: October 23, 2013, 05:01:56 PM »
I almost forgot: In WA, anyone can be an officiant (sign up online for free with the "Universal Life Church"; there is case law supporting the validity of this), so you can save money by having a friend do your ceremony. I did this when I got married; writing the script was one of the best parts of the wedding, and made it really feel like it was ours.

With 7-8 people you could probably do a guerilla wedding just about anywhere, not bother with a permit.

Ha! Our friends just offered for one of them to become a legal officiant and do our wedding since they will be doing 2 more this year anyway! How awesome is that? I'm sure they can drum up another friend or two as witnesses. How fun! Ooh, and not to mention it's another $200 we save. Yeah! There's an AirBnB in their neighborhood they're looking into for us as well. We "splurged" on the rings (well, really I don't think it's splurging) and got a set for $200. Things are starting to look very mustachian for this wedding!