The Hippo


Jul 16, 2019








Boro Creative Visions

Other not the same old wedding ideas

High-altitude venues like the McIntyre Ski Area (50 Chalet Way, Manchester, 622-6159, 
Museums like the Aviation Museum of New Hampshire (27 Navigator Road, Londonderry, 669-4820,
Academic venues like the University of New Hampshire (20 Ballard St., Durham, 862-1900, 
Indoor playgrounds like Cowabunga’s (1328 Hooksett Road, Hooksett, 625-8005, 
Bowling allies like Merrimack Ten Pin Center (698 Daniel Webster Highway, Merrimack, 429-0989, or Spare Time (216 Maple St., Manchester, 625-9656,
Orchards like Mack’s Apples (230 Mammoth Road, Londonderry, 434-7619,
Petting zoos like Charmingfare Farm (774 High St, Candia, 483-5623, 
Movie theaters like Red River Theatres (11 S. Main St., Concord, 224-4600,
Audubon centers like the NH Audubon McLane Center (84 Silk Farm Rd., Concord, 224-9909,
Sports fields like the Northeast Delta Dental Stadium (1 Line Dr., Manchester, 641-2005, 

Far-out locales close to home
Forget the typical venues and try something unique

By Ryan Lessard

 If you are a nontraditional sort, you may be looking to escape the manors, country clubs, resorts and even the more rural barns, lakefronts and vineyards that are in vogue for wedding venues these days. Here are a few ideas for wedding locations found somewhere off the beaten path.

Under the stars, sort of
You’ve probably dreamed of getting married outdoors under the open sky, perhaps under the night sky or just at sunset, but pulling off such an endeavor requires down-to-the-minute planning and can get ruined by New England’s infamously uncooperative weather.
Before its expansion in 2008, the McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center in Concord only hosted one or two weddings. But with more room for receptions, it’s become a more popular option. Education Director Kim Duncan says there are between five and eight weddings at the center each year.
“One of the sites they select within the museum is to get married inside our planetarium theater, which is fun because we’re able to actually project an evening sky for them,” Duncan said. “There are couples who select right at sunset so you can still actually see the couple, unlike if you were getting married underneath the stars that we have projected.”
The theater seats 103 people but seating arrangements between the atrium and function room areas can accommodate anywhere from 150 to 175 people. 
“We have a great open space on our first floor that serves as a great dance floor right at the front of an F8 fighter jet. So that’s an interesting backdrop,” Duncan said.
She said guests are welcome to check out all the other parts of the museum at any point during a reception.
“If they’re getting married here, they can just flow out and have the reception in the entire facility,” Duncan said.
The facility can be rented for $950 for a minimum of five hours, plus $125 for each additional hour. You can also bring in any caterer and a licensed bartender to provide food and drinks.
Art gallery
The Currier Museum of Art in Manchester is pristine, diverse and stimulating, with three different sections for the different phases of a wedding.
“The ceremonies actually take place in our 1929 historic court,” said Lisa Pavlopoulos, the Currier’s events manager. “It’s a beautiful historic court, Italian Renaissance-inspired, with nice beautiful columns, and it has a marble staircase. There’s an upper balcony and there’s court seating.”
There is room in the courtyard to seat 30 to 40 people while the rest can stand. From there, the guests can transition to a cocktail hour and a reception.
“A lot of people really like to do both the ceremony and the reception with us, because it’s neat and clean and it keeps everybody within one building,” Pavlopoulos said. “There’s plenty of places for them to go and it feels like they’re in three different areas for all three different activities.”
The cocktail hour branches out into the wings of the gallery, and the reception is held in the Winter Garden Café with seating room for 140 guests (150 if you include the head table). 
“It acts as our cafe during the day but it transforms remarkably at night,” Pavlopoulos said.
All weddings have to take place at night since the museum is open to the public during the day.
The ceremony costs $1,200, which includes an hour of rehearsal the night before and two hours for the ceremony itself. It includes general admission for all guests, including during the day of the wedding. 

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