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Things to Consider When Choosing an Event Venue

picture of the gazebo at the 228 event venue in the fall

Whether you’re planning a company barbeque, a wedding, or a family reunion, keep some things in mind when choosing an event venue. The right venue is key for having an amazing experience.

Budget vs. Cost of Venue

Start by coming up with a budget for the event. Then you know how much money you have available to spend on a venue. It’s no use falling in love with a venue if it’s outside of the budget. Having a budget will also help limit the number of venues available to choose from. This can make the decision easier. Leave room in the budget for unforeseen expenses. Ask the venue about any hidden costs or fees so you don’t get an unpleasant surprise when it comes time to settle the bill.

Guest List vs. Capacity of Venue

Before deciding on a venue, determine how many people you’re including on the guest list. Some venues charge for a minimum number of guests, regardless of how many show up. Each venue has a maximum capacity determined by the size of the venue and any fire regulations, safety considerations, and insurance coverage.

Type of Event and Theme

Decide whether the event will be formal or informal and if you will have a theme. Some event spaces are better suited to more formal events. Others are better for informal functions. Also, some themes just won’t work well in some spaces. For example, it isn’t easy to transform a fancy hotel ballroom into a country barn dance. It makes more sense to start with a setting that fits the theme.

Location

If all the attendees will come from around the same area, having an event venue nearby makes it easier for them to get to the event. If a lot of guests are coming from outside the area, an event venue near the hotels where they’ll be staying or the airport may make more sense.

Services and Preferred Vendors

Check to see what services the venue offers. Do they offer catering or have a kitchen available for caterers? Ask about the availability of AV equipment, tables, chairs, and linens for your use. Some event venues require you to purchase a package of services all together whether or not you need these services. These can include catering, flowers, bartending services, and DJs. Venues may also have certain vendors you’re required to use or preferred vendors they recommend.

Layout of the Event Venue

Think about the activities you want at your event. Consider the layout of the event venue to make sure there’s a suitable location for each activity and that people will easily be able to move from place to place.

Parking

Ask about the parking situation. Is there sufficient parking for everyone to drive, or would you need to transport people due to limited parking availability? Will there be valet parking? Is there a cost for parking?

Alcohol Considerations

Some venues don’t allow alcohol consumption. Verify this if you plan to serve adult beverages at your event. Ask whether you need to purchase alcohol from the facility or a preferred vendor or whether you can bring your own.

Availability

Check with the event venue to see which dates and times they have available. If your event needs to happen on a particular date, plan as far in advance as possible. Event venues sometimes fill up a year or more in advance during the busy seasons.

Insurance

Ask about insurance and whether the event venue requires people or companies to purchase separate liability insurance for events. 

Accessibility

If inviting small children, elderly individuals, or those with mobility issues to the event, check that the venue is accessible for these guests.

Other Considerations

Verify how much time is available before the event to set up, whether the event has a cleanup crew, and whether the acoustics of the location are appropriate. For example, having many people in a building with a low ceiling can make the event seem loud. A very large building can sometimes cause sounds to echo.

The employees at The 228 will be happy to answer any questions you may have about our facility and the dates available for events.