Angela asked, “Bill and I really love nature. We would like to plan a wedding in an outdoor setting. Any suggestions?”
Because you identify yourselves as nature lovers, I assume you are looking for an outdoor setting that offers more than a gazebo in a neighborhood park. There are a number of venues that are situated in a nature setting. Some are shown on the Location Ideas page.
Many Forest Preserve Districts and Municipal Park Districts offer sites for weddings and even provide a facility where you can host the reception. Right off the top of my head, what comes to mind is the Redfield Estate located at The Grove in Glenview (Glenview Park District). Another is Independence Grove (Lake County Forest Preserve District). The Grove is situated around a 115-acre lake that is surrounded by prairie and woodlands. However, if Channahon isn’t too far off the map for you, I would suggest checking out the Four Rivers Environmental Center located within McKinley Woods – Kerry Sheridan Grove (Forest Preserve District of Will County). I recently officiated a wedding at this venue and was struck by how picturesque the setting is. One end of the banquet room has floor to ceiling glass that allows a great view of nature and particularly the Illinois River. The feeling you get is that of a remote nature setting – but with the elegance you would expect for a wedding. Before your guests are treated to this beautiful banquet room, they are greeted by a grand stone fireplace that is even more impressive than the entrance to the Center. Perhaps you are thinking that Channahon is a little off the map for you. That was my first impression when I first heard about this venue. I discovered, however, this venue is not too far from the where I-55 and I-80 intersect. So traveling guests will find getting there, from North, South, East or West, quite convenient. Can you tell I was impressed with Four Rivers?
What natural-setting wedding locations have impressed you? Do you have any ideas to share with Angela and Bill?