The Inn at Mill Race Pond in Hope, NJ is a charming rustic wedding venue that includes a bed-and-breakfast as well as a lounge and restaurant (The Fireside Tavern) on site. It turned out to be one of our favorite wedding venues in our 2019 wedding season.
What made it so great (and this is hard to translate into photos) is how you can stand in the middle of the ceremony grounds and in a 360 degree spin you can the bride & groom getting ready houses, the reception tent, The Fireside Tavern, and a lot of other great natural and rustic features that make up the property. With a little exploring – there are also some tucked away little spots that make for great photo backdrops as we found out.
Why It’s Great for Weddings
We have always been attracted to wedding venues that allow couple’s to have everything in one place.
Wedding days can be very stressful with the amount of planning and logistics that go into making them great. The feeling of stress is incredibly lessened when the bride & groom don’t have to worry about getting in a car, driving 30 minutes to another destination, and maybe even doing this 2-3 times on their wedding day. Having everything in one location allows for everyone to spend less time worrying about making it to the next location on time, and allows them to spend that would-be travel time on things that matter more like relaxing and really taking in their wedding day.
With the helpful staff and good line up of vendors on the day, we were able to keep our focus entirely on our couple and documenting their wedding day.
The natural flow of the day was perfect as we began by splitting up (we are a husband + wife photo team), Jes with the bride and her girls, and Chris with the groom and his guys. They were situated in their own houses on site – and these spaces were so perfect for photography. There was old world charm throughout with the rustic vibes, natural window lighting, and nick-knacks on the shelves that added a touch of something special.
From there, we did a First Look with the bride & groom, followed by portraits around the property (+ a few across the street at a little park). The gristmill makes for a really unique and vintage looking spot for portraits, while a hidden overgrown tennis court in the woods made for the perfect post-apocalyptic type location (those are
Rounding out the day was a really exceptional reception. It all started underneath the tent, but as things unfolded people would move about and mingle on the lawn (with lawn games for extra fun), in the house where the couple had a photo booth set up, and when everything was said and done – an after party held in tavern to keep the night going.
You can see a full wedding gallery that we shot here!