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Howard County Conservancy

Woodstock , MD
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CONTACT US

LOCATION

Woodstock, MD US 21163 (map)

PHONE

410-465-8877

WEBSITE

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Wedding Venue

REVIEWS

4.6
out of 5.0
4.6/5.0
4.7/5.0
4.7/5.0
4.7/5.0
4.1/5.0
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Private User
Wedding:
10/19/2013
4.6/5.0
This was an absolutely beautiful place for a ceremony and reception. The whole area is just beautiful for pictures and our photographers made so many great shots.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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Ben
Wedding:
10/13/2013
5.0/5.0
This beautiful venue was perfect for our outdoor ceremony/indoor reception. The only possible issue is that there is no "dress up" room, but it's worth it to get dressed before you get there. The grounds are private and stunningly beautiful, and the staff is very helpful.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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Paige
Wedding:
9/27/2013
4.2/5.0
Howard County Conservancy is an absolutely beautiful venue. It's not traditionally a wedding venue, just an event venue, but that's one of the reasons we really liked it. They are a non profit organization that offers nature courses and provides summer day camps for kids along with much more, and they are located on acres of picturesque old farm land. There are gardens and an old barn that we got married in front of. And the reception room inside is very open with bamboo floors and accents, and they have rotating local art on the walls which we loved. This venue has a few rules, but they are mainly just to make sure their grounds are maintained. We like them because we were able to bring all the rest of our chosen vendors in from outside and so had lots of freedom and options for planning our wedding. The director was quick to respond to our questions and requests by email.
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Anonymous
Wedding:
Recently Married
1.3/5.0
Don't get me wrong...the venue is beautiful and I loved having my wedding there. But the planning was not at all enjoyable. Their rules are extremely rigid and they do not aim to please the bride AT ALL. There are several outdoor areas, and you have to pay to use EACH ONE. And you have to pay a month in advance, so you could pay the fee to use the outdoor venue and then not even be able to use it! There is no reason for this because they don't rent the facility out to more than one person, so it's not like they're missing out on additional revenue by you using the indoor and outdoor facilities. They provide a limited number of tables and chairs and do not let you take them outside, so you have to rent tables and chairs if you need any outside. We went a few times to the venue prior to my wedding and they had not mowed the grass in the garden where I planned to have my ceremony. We asked them to please mow it and they said that volunteers mow the grass, so they have no control over when it gets mowed. It was not mowed for my wedding. The regular rental is only for seven hours (2 hr set up, 4 hr event, 1 hr clean up). If you want more time, you can pay for an extra hour. But, this basically means that you can't get ready there (I got ready at home) and don't have much time to set up ahead of time.

I love the venue, but there are probably other venues out there that are beautiful that are more flexible and more willing to cater to your needs. It ends up getting very expensive having to bring all of those rentals in on top of the fee to rent the venue and the outdoor rental fees.
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Kristie
Wedding:
8/17/2013
5.0/5.0
I had my ceremony at Howard County Conservancy's in front of the Montjoy Barn on August 17, 2013. It was a beautiful outdoor ceremony with the barn & nature being our backdrop. I got so many compliments on the venue!

We then had our reception in the Guldesky Room. We had 110 people for our wedding, but I believe it can hold up to 130 for buffet style dinner. Looking out the surrounding windows at the beautiful landscaping and nature, made it easy to keep the decorating to a minimal. They also allowed us to use our own caterer & bartenders, which was a great way to save money!! I highly recommend them!!

Only deal is that have some more strict rules than most places-but still worth it. And they are sure to tell you everything up front so that there are no surprises!
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Eric
Wedding:
6/29/2013
4.6/5.0
A beautiful venue with wonderful gardens and a great reception room. I also liked that my rental fee supported the Conservancy's educational programs.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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Suzanne
Wedding:
6/8/2013
5.0/5.0
Denise was extremely helpful with scheduling our ceremony and reception. The honors garden was absolutely beautiful, but we would have been equally happy with the wheat barn if the weather had not cooperated. The value is beyond compare, with other venues costing more than twice as much.
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Jenn
Wedding:
4/4/2013
5.0/5.0
We chose the conservancy based off the value, as well as the gardens. Unfortunately Mother Nature was not cooperative with the blooms this year so we held the wedding inside. Everything turned out great! The space was more than we needed and the staff that helped was incredible.
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Kathryn
Wedding:
10/27/2012
4.6/5.0
The biggest problem with the Conservancy is that it's so beautiful you will wish your guests could stay there longer. We used Teresa's Garden for our wedding ceremony and cocktail hour and I kept wishing all of our guests could have come early/stayed late and gone on a hike around the grounds. It is so pretty and well taken care of. That garden and the Gudelsky Center (inside reception area) were the PERFECT size for our wedding of about 65 guests.

The venue has some policies that are a bit restrictive as it is first and foremost an educational center and not a wedding venue. However, if you can get over those things, it is a phenomenal location. Everyone that I talked to loved it and couldn't believe how pretty it all was - and the best part was that most people had not even heard of it before our day so what a nice surprise. You won't get an on-site coordinator as with many other wedding venues and I cannot recommend hiring someone for this role enough. We used Jenny from jpb Designs and she did an amazing job. They have some tables but you will probably want to rent your own chairs and all china/glassware/linens. The biggest hurdle is that you can't have anything delivered or left outside of the hours you have rented the place so you may end up paying a bit extra for the delivery or pick-up but it's worth it!!!

Beautiful venue! And you can feel good that your money is going to this very worthwhile non-profit.
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Allison
Wedding:
10/20/2012
4.8/5.0
Fantastic venue. Gorgeous setting, excellent for photos and great facilities. Incredible value that includes rentals. Wonderful views and a big, big sky. Goats to boot!

We did want to bring in a foosball table for the reception, but were denied, hence the flexibility rating. Everything else was easy! Guests couldn't say enough good things about the setting.

It is a dark sky facility, which makes it a bit difficult for guests to get to their cars post-ceremony, but we solved that with lantern favors. Another couple I know used solar lights.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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Kerline
Wedding:
9/29/2012
5.0/5.0
Beautiful place, perfect during the fall season. Staff (Denise) is so great. We enjoyed having our wedding ceremony and reception there. Would definitely recommend.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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Jenn
Wedding:
6/24/2012
4.9/5.0
The Howard County Conservancy was an amazing venue for our June Wedding. The flowers were in full bloom and the setting provided a relaxed natural setting for our wedding. After searching the central MD area for an old barn to hold the ceremony in we found exactly what we were looking for in the Montjoy Barn on the grounds. Many of our guests found the barn to be a unique choice for the wedding ceremony. The old beams and old farm tools gave the barn character which meant we needed very little decoration. The reception was held in the air-conditioned Education Center which offers a large room that has plenty of space for dinner and dancing. The room has lots of large windows which allow the natural light to come in.
The staff at the Howard County Conservancy were amazing and made the planning very easy. They were available to answer questions and concerns as they came up as the wedding drew closer. On the day of the wedding they were available to answer questions and ensure that the facility was maintained throughout the event.
We are still receiving compliments from our guests on the uniqueness of our venue. An added bonus to using the Howard County Conservancy is that it is open to the public and our friends and family can walk the grounds when they want to remember our beautiful day.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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Katelyn
Wedding:
6/2/2012
4.6/5.0
This venue is absolutely beautiful! The rolling hills, the perfectly kept gardens, the old wooden barn and the reception space with bamboo floors and wood trusses all create a beautiful setting for a wedding. Our day was gorgeous weather which just made for a spectacular evening. We had the ceremony in front of the old barn, cocktails in the Honor's Garden and the reception in the Gudelsky Center. The venue can get pricey because each space is an additional separate charge, so for us using multiple outdoor locations, the cost added up quick. Do keep in mind, however, that this is a nonprofit organization and the money you spend on your wedding at this location goes to a good cause.There are also some limitations with using the spaces, primarily because weddings are not their first and foremost priority. Be sure to ask a lot of questions and describe your true vision for your event up front to ensure that all your ideas can be met. All in all this was the perfect setting for our wedding and we couldn't have asked for a more perfect day.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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anne
Wedding:
3/31/2012
5.0/5.0
Beautiful venue at the right price. Tables and chairs included in the cost. I love that the money for the rental doesn't go to big business wedding places. They are a local non-profit organization that does environmental education.

The barn was the perfect backdrop to our rustic wedding and the guildeski center was beautiful for the reception with local artists work on the walls.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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balto love birds
Wedding:
9/17/2011
4.7/5.0
This was a great venue! We wanted something outdoors with an option for indoors in case of rain. and for our reception This was perfect! The grounds are beautiful and offer lots of choices for where the ceremony could be. We chose Theresa’s garden, as we had around 130 guests and that was the best space for that number. (We also held our cocktail hour there and it was lovely). Denise, the contact for wedding rentals there, was great and answered all of my questions quickly and efficiently. The rate was reasonable, especially compared to spaces in the city. We had the reception in the Gudelsky Hall on the grounds and it also worked very well!
We did end up renting a few extra tables and all of our chairs since we didn’t like the plastic ones on site, which added to the total expense -- something to consider when figuring out the total cost for your budget.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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Laura
Wedding:
5/15/2010
4.8/5.0
We held our May wedding ceremony and reception at the Conservancy. Overall we were really pleased with the way things turned out! Denise was a pleasure to work with and went out of her way to make our day go as smoothly as possible. One of the main reasons that we chose Howard County Conservancy was because our rental fees were going to a non-profit organization, and not a wedding factory. The Conservancy is a unique place that isn't very well-known, another reason why we loved it.

The grounds are beautiful, and our guests LOVED the venue. We held our ceremony under a big tree in Theresa's garden, our cocktail hour around the fountain in the Honor's Garden, and our reception in the Gudelsky Center. We also had the option of holding the ceremony in the Montjoy barn in case of rain, which was a huge relief.

The only thing that would have made our day a little easier was having the option to store some of our supplies in the Gudelsky Center when the ceremony and reception were over. The rules are pretty firm, and we had to pack everything up ourselves at the end of the night and get it into people's cars to take back home. It would have been a lot easier if we had the option of coming back to get our stuff on Sunday or Monday.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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Anonymous
Wedding:
2+ years ago
5.0/5.0
We had our wedding reception at the conservancy on a beautiful summer day, and the Gudelsky center and honors garden were just gorgeous. This is a very special place, and it feels like you're in a rural area without being too far from the city. We found everyone very easy to work with, accommodating and laid back, especially compared to the wedding factories in and around Baltimore! The rates were very reasonable. We used My Thyme Inc. for catering, chosen from the Conservancy's catering list, and they were wonderful.

The only recommendation we have is that having outdoor lighting between the ballroom and the parking lot would really help evening guests find their cars. We were notified that it would be dark, but didn't put the time into getting outside lights.
Services Used: Wedding Venue
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Jessica
Wedding:
9/5/2009
4.1/5.0
The Howard County Conservancy was an absolutely beautiful place to get married. Both Sheila and Denise were delightful to work with and the natural beauty of the Gudelsky Center and the Honors Garden made for a gorgeous outdoor wedding. They do have strict time restrictions - a 7 hour rental is part of the package and additional time can be added for a fee, but no deliveries may be made outside of the rental time. We incurred some extra delivery charges from vendors because of this. All in all, if you are looking for a naturally beautiful, rustic venue with a reasonable rental fee in Howard County, I would strongly recommend the Conservancy.
Services Used: Wedding Venue

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Woodstock, MD 21163 See On Map
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