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Fête on the Fairways

With lush lawns and smartly designed clubhouses, these Twin Cities golf clubs are a wedding venue hole-in-one.
By: 
Abbie Burgess

Imagine magnificent views of golf course greens as photo backdrops and elegant spaces designed for large groups. Golf courses are known for exceptional customer service and often provide their own event coordinators to make the day a stress-free breeze. On-site catering, bartending and serving staff are an all-in-one package, reducing the number of outside vendors needed—fewer things for the couple to think about in their planning process. The pros of a golf club wedding are many, and these 10 exceptional Twin Cities clubs are at your service.

Interlachen Country Club
Established in 1909, the historic Interlachen is ranked as one of Golf Digest’s best golf courses in America. The Grand Ballroom, which holds 300 guests, has 25-foot ceilings, hardwood floors, and views of the golf course and the downtown Minneapolis skyline through floor-to-ceiling windows. A $10.5 million renovation is underway to update all areas of the clubhouse and surrounding grounds. By this summer, an outdoor ceremony space will be unveiled. The ballroom can accommodate an indoor ceremony, and the adjoining fireside lounge, porch and Interlachen Room work well for cocktail space. Membership or sponsorship by a member is required to hold a wedding here.

Rush Creek Golf Club
Rush Creek Golf Club is known for its spectacular views. The MacMillan ballroom, which seats 325, has soaring vaulted ceilings and windows with panoramic views of the golf course. Two stone fireplaces make for cozy moments, and a romantic Juliet balcony is perfect for the bridal bouquet toss. An outdoor terrace attached to the ballroom is a popular spot for the ceremony or cocktail hour, with a fire pit and outdoor furniture for a great atmosphere after sunset. “It’s classic elegance, but you can make it into what works for you,” says Lisa Albers, sales manager. “It’s all about finding vendors that will help you achieve your vision.”

Bearpath Golf and Country Club
Set in a gated community, Bearpath has exclusive appeal. A pergola overlooking the course provides a romantic setting for the ceremony. Large windows surround the 300-person ballroom, revealing spectacular gardens and golf course views. The catering staff act as full-service wedding planners and are available the entire wedding day. “We can do everything from booking the DJ to finding a pastor,” says Kim Davis, catering and events manager. “We take the couple’s dream and make it into reality,” adds Katie Dix, catering and events coordinator.

Brackett’s Crossing Country Club
“It’s not the typical country club vibe,” says Caitlin Parker, director of sales and catering. “It’s more of a contemporary take on it.” The clean lines and contemporary lighting and furniture of the Brackett's Platinum Ballroom are accented by the original crystal chandeliers, the only element to predate the recent renovation. Walls of windows look out over the golf course. The entire ballroom can hold 450 to 500 guests, or it can be subdivided into the Diamond Ballroom for 250, with the other side used for the ceremony. A terrace adorned with Italian string lights looks out over the 9th and 18th hole, perfect for socializing, with patio seating, high-top cocktail tables and heaters. The Garden Ceremony site is connected by a path to the terrace and ballroom and seats up to 435 guests for a ceremony; this serene space includes a covered pergola.

Majestic Oaks Golf Club
With a picket fence by a pond with a canopy of willows, a photography paradise awaits at Majestic Oaks. This Ham Lake venue offers two waterfront ceremony sites—one with a white gazebo and the other with a rustic pergola—and three indoor ballrooms, plus an outdoor space for receptions under the stars. “At night the rustling of the trees mixed with the sound of the pond fountains offers a nice ambiance,” says Hailey Fenton, private event sales director. A substantial remodel recently upgraded the elegant 450-capacity ballrooms, lobby area and restrooms, while restoring the vaulted beamed ceilings and dance floors. New chandeliers, carpet and banquet chairs complete the new look.

Blackberry Ridge Golf Club
With floor-to-ceiling windows, crystal chandeliers, a fireplace and wraparound patio overlooking the golf course, Blackberry Ridge is one of central Minnesota’s most elegant venues. “The windows say it all—you walk in and see the view of the whole course,” says Sonja Babich, director of sales and marketing, who’s there to help couples with their wedding from start to finish. “With the windows, your theme can shine through. Whatever you bring in will pop.” The bridal lounge with crystal chandeliers echoes the ambiance of the main space. Ceremonies can be held on the golf course, while the patio is perfect for cocktail hour. Wildlife often wanders the area, so don’t be surprised if you get a glimpse of deer or wild turkeys. The location in central Minnesota is “just a hop and a skip from the Cities,” Babich says, adding that it also makes a happy midpoint place to celebrate for families from Fargo, Wisconsin and elsewhere in the region.

Hazeltine National Golf Club
Guests will be impressed by the expansive ballroom against a backdrop of panoramic views of the Hazeltine National Golf Club. A private patio for cocktail hour is followed by dinner in the ballroom that seats 360. “We get rave reviews on our food,” says Jan Knudtson, director of sales and catering. In the ballroom, a neutral palette can bring out the best in whatever décor you envision. “A lot of different things work in that room, which makes it very versatile,” says Knudtson, who can assist in much of the planning. The front of the clubhouse, with stone walls and wooden beams, is perfect for wedding party photos, as is a view of Lake Hazeltine just beyond the outdoor patio. The spacious bridal suite’s amenities include a private bathroom and natural light, and it can be upgraded to include sofas, an oversized mirror and rugs. For the groom and groomsmen, there’s a room with two golf simulators, perfect for idling away a couple hours while everyone gets ready.

Midland Hills Country Club
Midland Hills is celebrating a milestone in 2019: its 100th anniversary. The classically elegant club’s ballroom can seat up to 300, while the smaller St. Andrews Room is an intimate space for around 50-perfect for rehearsal dinners or smaller indoor ceremonies. For a touch of nature in an urban setting, the banquet entrance garden and the patio garden are popular spots for photos. The patio can fit 240 for an outdoor ceremony. That classic country club feel comes through in the ballroom, where windows showcase views of the course for a light and bright vibe. Midland staff members are happy to help couples make the space their own with various linens and centerpieces.

Keller Golf Course
Located in Maplewood, Keller Golf Course is noteworthy among many elegant clubs in the area. Outstanding chefs and planners from Lancer Hospitality will work together to make the day’s events a delightful experience for guests and couples alike. The clubhouse, with its patio and wood-beamed ceilings, has a bar and grill as well as banquet and reception space from which fabulous views of the golf course and Keller Lake can be seen.

Olympic Hills Golf Club
The wraparound deck surrounding the ballroom “is what truly sells our venue,” says Ashley Tyler, director of hospitality at Olympic Hills Golf Club. After the wedding, guests can take to the deck and enjoy a stunning view of the 18th green as well as the ceremony site, pond and waterfall. The ballroom accommodating 200 was recently remodeled with hardwood floors, dramatic ceilings and wall finishings, and dimmable LED lighting throughout. And there’s no upcharge for dance floors. “We’re not big on additional costs. We believe in and are up-front in our pricing,” says Tyler. The ceremony site features a pergola with white ceremony chairs and tiered seating, as well as the waterfall and pond. A complimentary bottle of champagne awaits the bride and bridal party in the ladies changing suite. “We’re always willing to put together personalized touches for the bride and groom,” Tyler says. “Our chef is not only willing to but loves doing custom menus.”
 
Make It Yours
Looking to add a unique vibe to your traditional wedding venue? Give any space a personalized flair that’s as unique as your love story.

Décor
Most club ballrooms’ neutral palettes allow your décor and colors of choice to shine. Adding draping and lighting can change the look of the room entirely. Decals on ballroom doors—the couple’s monogram or another motif of their theme—can help personalize the scene. Deck the space with oodles of flowers for a garden theme, or bring in outdoorsy elements for a rustic vibe.

Menu
One of the benefits of choosing a club venue is access to an on-site chef. Ask how flexible they are with menu choices and whether they can incorporate a type of cuisine important to your family culture; sometimes they can even replicate a dish you fell in love with on a trip you took. Asking the bartending staff to create a signature drink will add unique flair to the culinary options.

Entertainment
Take advantage of this special kind of venue by arranging for golf course access for your wedding party and family, who can actually play a round of golf before the festivities get underway.

Rentals
While most clubs provide tables, chairs and linens as part of the rental package, bringing these pieces in from an outside vendor can completely change the look of a space. If the club allows it, consider working with a rental company to bring in furniture to create lounge spaces within the ballroom for a trend-forward setup.

Room Layout
While a traditional banquet hall layout may be just right for you, most clubs will help you create a custom layout. “Family style is very popular now, so we do a lot of family tables,” says Ashley Tyler of Olympic Hills Golf Course.

Rethink the Outdoor Space
At Brackett’s Crossing, for example, a couple rented a tent for the outdoor ceremony to house a live band for cocktails, and then went inside for dinner. “That was an awesome take on the space, a little different than what we normally do,” says Caitlin Parker of Brackett’s Crossing Country Club.

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