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The Great Outdoors
Even prior to last year, we all relished the outdoor treasures of the Pacific Northwest, particularly those of Oregon. But the pandemic forced us to think further outside the box and to get creative about how and where we enjoy our time—enter patio dining, rain or shine; park meetups with friends; walks with loved ones; and moments of stillness in the backyard. As couples get their wedding plans back on track, they’re looking to the outdoors now more than ever for their celebrations. Luckily for Oregon couples, there are outdoor venues that come in all shapes and sizes—from family farms and expansive decks to whimsical forests and scenic wineries.
North of Portland on Sauvie Island is flower farm turned event space Sweet Delilah Farm. An entirely outdoor venue suited for intimate events, the farm features a covered pergola with rustic tables, an arbor with farm views and a giant firepit for after-party fun. In true farm-to-table fashion, owner Chelsea Willis offers full floral design packages for couples, who get to select their blooms in the fields prior to cut and design. Additionally, you can loop the bridal party in with DIY design classes to create their own bouquets using the farm-grown blooms. Owned and operated by all-queer staff, Sweet Delilah Farm is focused on inclusivity for the BIPOC and LGBTQ communities.
Located south of Portland, new venue Ironlight towers above the hustle of downtown Lake Oswego. With an urban-meets-nature ambiance, Ironlight treats guests to an elevated event experience, allowing for seamless transitions between its indoor and outdoor areas (including two showstopping rooftop terraces with panoramic views of Mount Hood and the Cascades). Ironlight accommodates as many as 250 seated guests, but can also host smaller gatherings within the space.
Perched on Mount Scott in Happy Valley is The Aerie at Eagle Landing, a charming French-style stone chateau that’s surrounded by Eagle Landing Golf Course. The venue features several outdoor spots for weddings, including its newest addition, The Dock, which has waterfront views of The Aerie Clubhouse. Limited to five weddings a year, The Dock delivers an exclusive experience for couples and even includes use of its very own “love boat” (swoon).
Overlooking the historic Columbia River Gorge, Bridal Veil Lakes is nestled between old-growth forests and a three-acre lake. The private property is replete with lush greenery, gardens, wildflowers and dramatic views—a captivating canvas to make the day your own. And because the owners allow only one group per day, you can savor it from morning until midnight. Also overlooking the gorge is The Griffin House, a 120-year-old home and sprawling cliffside property, just five minutes from downtown Hood River. Lovingly renovated throughout the years, The Griffin House offers endless delights and amenities, including accommodations for ten, stone terraces, grassy lawns and an original rock wall lining the bluff’s edge, where you can take in outstanding views.
Nestled in the foothills of Mount Hood at the confluence of Bee and Canyon creeks, Camp Colton gives couples unlimited access to natural wilderness complemented by the convenience of refined structures. The property’s 85 acres of enchanting forest are suffused with waterfalls, foot bridges, ponds and meadows—the essential ingredients for making your woodsy wedding dreams come true. Perhaps the coolest part about Camp Colton is its on-site accommodations for as many as 25 people, with additional capacity for 25 people to camp, so the party can go all night long.
Out in wine country, Francis Ford Coppola’s Domaine de Broglie sits in the Dundee Hills, with sweeping views of the Willamette Valley. Contrasting styles of modern glam and rustic elegance come together to make this spot a memorable backdrop. After the ceremony among vines and oak trees, guests can meander throughout the vineyard sipping estate-grown Pinot Noir before heading to the rustic outdoor fireplace. Also located in the Dundee Hills is Domaine Roy & Fils, an intimate luxury wine country venue. The estate accommodates as many as 75 guests on its sprawling outdoor patio, which faces breathtaking views of the Willamette Valley and a grove of olive trees transplanted from California. Bring the wine theme full circle and pair your event with limited-production Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs.
On the beloved Oregon Coast in Pacific City, award-winning craft brewery Pelican Brewing Company offers a private beachfront ceremony setting with impressive views of Haystack Rock and Cape Kiwanda. After the ceremony, guests can mingle at cocktail tables on the outdoor patio before moving on to the reception in the oceanfront banquet room. For those coming from out of town, there are several unique lodging options within walking distance.
Head to Central Oregon just outside of Bend to Brasada Ranch, where year-round sunshine, Cascade Mountain views and destination “I dos” await. Brasada Ranch offers a diverse assortment of indoor/outdoor venues with a mix of modern, rustic, high-desert flair. For those looking to make a weekend of it, guests can stay at the resort and enjoy activities such as biking, swimming, fishing and horseback riding. Rest assured you’ll be taken care of, as Brasada prides itself on booking one wedding per weekend to give couples the utmost attention and service. Also located in Central Oregon is House on Metolius, a 200-acre property on the banks of the sparkling Metolius River that’s surrounded by national forest and with views of Mount Jefferson and Three Fingered Jack. The wooded escape has served as a private estate and retreat for more than 100 years and now hosts a limited number of exclusive weddings each year. Its wedding package includes use of its facilities and accommodations, including the Main House (seven bedrooms plus a bridal suite) and six additional cabins.
With its unmatched natural beauty and a variety of spectacular landscapes, usually just steps away, Oregon offers couples endless options for outdoor wedding venues. After all, dancing the night away under the stars is as romantic as it gets.