Arlington Acres

Arlington Acres – An Old Barn Gets A New Life

Posted by  //  September 11, 2018  //  Local Business

When Katie Jerome got engaged and said that she wanted to get married in her grandpa’s barn, her fiance and family thought she was crazy. Hundreds of bales of hay were stacked from floor to ceiling; parts of the floor hadn’t been uncovered in 50 years; wind and rain blew through the walls, and horses were still living downstairs. The barn hadn’t been painted in decades, the water pump was full of mud, and years of hard farming had left numerous patches and repairs. Standing on a family farm that was originally settled by family ancestors in 1862, the barn has weathered the test of time and remains a testament to the strength of love and family.

It was all-hands on deck to transform the barn into a venue fit for such a special day. This massive undertaking became a family affair, with parents, aunts, uncles and the engaged couple all contributing elbow grease. Between the 2015 engagement and the couple’s wedding on June 11, 2016 the family restored the barn to its former glory. After a massive cleanout, the exterior was stained, and repairs were made. Some Pre Owned Farming Equipment were also donated. Instead of renovations, the family focused on restoration and gave new life to original features– the granary was transformed into a bar topped with a slab of butternut found on the property; the original watering trough became a cocktail hour site and real stairs were added to the upper hayloft for additional seating and an incredible view of the dance floor. The durable flooring was sourced from Barham & Sons.

As the barn was transformed, the family thought perhaps others would be interested in holding their weddings there too. A simple Facebook page was created, and without any advertising, the interest was overwhelming. Arlington Acres hosted 10 weddings in its first year, 35 over the last two seasons, is nearly full for 2019–and already has bookings for 2020!

The venue was named Arlington Acres in honor of the family’s patriarch, Arlington Garrett, who was the last to operate the farm as a dairy until his unexpected death in 1977. Arlington was a respected and active community leader–serving 25 years as the Town Justice of Fabius, President of the Tully Masonic Lodge, deacon at the Apulia Station Methodist Church, and active volunteer fireman.

“Every time I walk into the barn I smile,” says Nancy Hatch, Arlington’s daughter, who grew up on the farm. “I know my dad would just love that his farm is home again to so many happy memories.”

Arlington Acres continues its 150-year family-run tradition. Katie and her husband run the business side of things and coordinate the weddings, her parents give tours, maintain the grounds and staff the events. You’re also likely to meet one of the many aunts, uncles, cousins and family members that stop by frequently and support the venue as well.

The sense of rustic comfort is a central theme throughout Arlington Acres Wedding Barn.  Golden string light garlands wrapped around wooden beams and jumbo white paper lanterns lend the barn an air of festive magic. Above the polished butternut bar hang electric Ball jar lanterns, and the bar stools are repurposed and updated tractor seats. The ivory-clothed tables are adorned simply with burlap runners and polished wooden slabs, upon which sit fairy-lighted mason jars. The rustic down-home feeling is completed by framed historical black and white photos of different sizes that decorate the walls.

The high ceilings and the wide-open doors opposite one another on each side of the barn create a generous, clean airflow on a pleasantly breezy day; and the doors can be closed against the elements on cold winter days, where the inside of the barn stays pleasantly warm.

Outside, at the top of a nearby knoll, against the majestic backdrop of Labrador Mountain, stands a wedding arch, waiting to be decorated according to the couple’s wishes. Wooden church pews acquired from Habitat for Humanity are available as outdoor seating for guests to observe the wedding ceremony. If the weather is inclement, the nuptials can be moved inside the barn and performed there, instead.

Wooden barrels with lawn chairs provide continuity to the rustic, wooden theme, bringing the inside of the barn out into the spacious green lawns of Arlington Acres. Wooden barrels and chairs are set up outside, so that guests can enjoy the stunning country views and relax beneath the stars.

Another feature unique to Arlington Acres is that the venue only books one event per weekend from June through the end of October. This gives the couple plenty of time to set up and enjoy their special day, without being rushed out of the event venue. Having the entire weekend also allows the couple to clean up on Sunday instead of Saturday night, on the tail-end of high-spirited festivities.

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