Camp Westwind is situated on the southern shore of the Salmon River estuary in northwest Oregon. It's completely surrounded by land preserved by The Nature Conservancy, and the camp itself strives to live in symbiosis with the land. It's less a "summer camp" these days (it was formerly owned by the YWCA) and more a wilderness education camp.
The primary goal of Camp Westwind (besides environmental education) is to conserve the ecosystem it's in. As such, they don't allow many cars to drive directly to the site.
Another "quirk" is the sleeping arrangements. Most of our guests will be sleeping in cabins like this:
I'm not so sure some of my family members (and a few of his) are cool with it, though. Luckily, there are a couple cabins that are a little more... technologically advanced. These cabins are fully-heated, though - they're not that rustic. We are trying to encourage all of our guests to stay at the camp with us. Due to the idiosyncrasies with crossing the river, staying at a hotel (over 40 minutes away, at closest!) would be difficult. Plus, we wouldn't get to see those guests as much over the course of the weekend - we want to see our loved ones!
There's another little teeny thing about the cabins - they don't come equipped with bed linens. This is a summer camp! Usually people bring their sleeping bag and pillow.
My mom, the most organized person in the world (this is a compliment!), is a little concerned about the logistics of getting everyone sleeping linens. The vast majority of our guests (including ourselves!) are traveling a long ways to get to our wedding - the worry is they won't have room in their luggage for a
The next "quirk" directly affects wedding decor - the campgrounds don't allow any open flames. We can have a bonfire in the firepit ('mallow-roasting after party!! chubby bunny battle royale!!), and a "unity candle" if we want, but no candles anywhere else.
This is a real bummer, because Mr. Bear Cub and I love to eat by candlelight. It sets such an awesome mood for dining. Unfortunately, I can't have centerpieces like this:
There is, however, a super-sweet fireplace in the lodge. We can't have candles on the table, but we can have a roaring fire in the hearth! In the end, I know this is for the best. September is fire season, and I wouldn't want to be responsible for starting a forest fire at my venue!
The last little quirk is that they don't allow any pets. Again, I totally understand this - they're trying to maintain the ecosystem, and dogs just love to chew on and dig up "ecosystem". This is a super bummer. We got our dog, Beauregard (bo-tard) when we moved to Chile. He's our little boy, and he's the only one we'd want as our ring-retriever!
He's already pretty good at retrieving the beers!
Did your venue come with any "quirks"? How are you making your venue work for you?