05 August 2008

Not your typical wedding location...

Weddings are like summer camp. A bunch of people get together, sing songs, go through rituals (or "ceremonies" ;) ), bond, and try to enrich their lives together. Except most "outdoor" weddings are strictly that - just outside of the door. That wedding on the lawn of your swanky hotel? Totally outdoors. It's got, like, fresh air or whatever that's called.
No dice. Just because a wedding is "outside" doesn't mean it's outdoors. And to each her own, of course, but what I want is for the gorgeous outdoors to be my temple.

Wow, huh? WOW. I had always pictured myself getting married on a cliff overlooking the ocean. I can't imagine anything more breathtaking, more majestic, more emblematic (precipice of life, anyone?).
Ry was a camp counselor every summer during college. He's always imagined getting married at a camp on a lake.

This is Coeur d'Alene (Idaho). Not bad, not bad... just not quite right. We knew we wanted to get married somewhere in the northwest US, so we narrowed it down to 3 major locations: Oregon Coast, Orcas Island, and Vancouver Island. How's that for cutting the list? ;) Let me tell you, there are a LOT of options for getting married in these three places. Tofino on Vancouver Island is bee-you-tee-fool. But perpetually rainy. And as much as we both love rain (really!), I'd kind of like to wear my FAB wedding dress outside. And not have to worry about mud. Then we heard about Strathcona Park Lodge! This chickie had her wedding there, and the reception's in a barn! How fun is that?? So SPL is a major contender!
Exhibit "breathtaking":
We want for everyone to be able to stay together in cabins (like camping!) but with a little bit of luxe (glamping!) and a lot of home-feel (cooking!). Needless to say, even though SPL is NOT my idyllic dream coastal location, we heart Orcas Island. FH was a camp counselor at Camp Orkila, and raves about the place. There're a few places that meet our (unique) qualifications here, but not many. BTW one of our qualifications is "no rip-offs". We'll come back to Orcas Island later.
And then there's OREGON!!! I heart Camp Westwind! OMG fug!
BASICALLY perfect. See that beauty? That's Cascade Head. swoon. Camp Westwind is the 500 acres that comprise Cascade Head. LOVE IT! Remember that first idyllic picture?

Not so shabby, eh? AND Westwind has cabins and reception hall and outdoors and it's WONDERFUL.
So next month, after FH and I leave New Mexico (YAY!), we're going on a "location scouting" trip in the NW! On the list are:
Vancouver Island - Strathcona Park Lodge
Orcas Island - Beach Haven, Camp Orkila, Buck Bay Farm (lavender farm!!!), and Doe Bay (though I'm afraid this place might be out of our price range. Crazy, as it's a hippy farm!!)
Oregon Coast - Camp Westwind

Soo excited!! I'll be updating about the scouting trip as the details are ironed out.
Anyone know of a better place to do a rustic, family&friends-oriented, wilderness wedding in the Northwest?


  1. Don't forget to check out Clayoquot Wildernes Resort in the Clayoquot Sound Biosphere on Vancouver Island. The resort has several weddings each year in their safari-style tented camp in the middle of the rain forest. And talk about luxury- the spa is amazing.
    Check out their blog at www.wildretreatblog.com where you can find a ton of 'glamping' photos.

  2. You're totally right, Dominique! I checked that place out after skimming through the book "the best places to kiss in the NW". It does look AWESOME. Unfortunately, I think it runs a price tag of several hundred (per bed) a night. I don't even want to begin to imagine how much that would be for 70ppl, let alone food! Great idea, though! :) (I WISH I could do it there ;) )

  3. wow wow, If you choose one of those locations, all you will need is the people, haha. your wedding is going to beautiful... i love weddings that beautiful bc of the location alone.