Glen Echo Park Partnership
I had no problems working with Glen Echo. They were always very responsive and worked with me. The bumper car pavilion was a fantastic venue for my casual ceremony and reception!
Glen Echo was the perfect find for our wedding. We wanted a venue that would allow us to have a fun and non-traditional wedding and Glen Echo gave us just that. We totally played up the vintage carnival theme and used that for inspiration in our decorations, food, cake topper, etc. We rented the carousel during cocktail hour which our guests loved and it made for great pictures of us and the bridal party.
The staff at Glen Echo were extremely helpful throughout our planning process. Emily and Dwight were prompt and helpful in answering questions and problem solving to make our day go smoothly.
The only slight downside to Glen Echo is that there are rules and guidelines that you must follow because it is a National Park. However, this was all stuff we could work around (i.e. no liquor allowed so we just served beer and wine) and it really was not a big deal.
Glen Echo Park is a VERY magical, happy place. It's so joyful and warm and fun with the unique architecture, signage, history and of COURSE the carousel. When my husband and I looked into it after my Mom recommended it, we KNEW we had to get married there.
We had our wedding ceremony on the stage in the Cuddle Up Pavilion, and our wedding reception at the Bumper Car Pavilion. We also rented a small room inside the office for getting ready and later on, for babysitting. We also rented the carousel for an hour (during cocktail hour) which the guests LOVED.
- It's SO unique. Memorable. Fun. Joyful. Magical.
- The carousel!
- Fairly affordable (for the DC area)
- Outdoors but also covered so you're ok if it rains.
- Can accommodate a lot of people!
- Absolutely beautiful for photos.
- There are SO many rules. Since it's a national park and they want to preserve it, they have a lot of hard rules. Like no hard liquor (BOO! Even though you can serve champagne/beer/wine), no candles (BOO!) and no using tacks or staples to hang decorations (so you have to get creative). They also have a strict pre-approved set of caterers so you are pretty limited there.
- Everything is spread fairly far apart, so if it rains even though your areas will be fine, it would also
- The carousel is open to the public until 6pm every day, so unless you want randos around and also LOUD carousel music, you pretty much have to have an evening wedding.
- Some walking is involved since the parking lot and restroom are kind of spread far away; so if you have elderly guests it could be a challenge.
It's also worth noting that our contact person changed like 3 different times. So everything was kind of confusing. We had a walk through with a girl who wasn't there 2 months later during the time of our wedding. And the new contact lady (who was actually the ORIGINAL one-long story-wasn't even at the event. It ended up being fine of course, but it was hard to get replies and calls back about certain issues. Our caterer was definitely getting frustrated.
Overall, it was beautiful and happy (and GREAT weather!), and everyone (especially the out of town guests) LOVED the venue. It was GORGEOUS and magical. Just know you have to make a lot creative compromises. All of them are worth...
I absolutely loved Glen Echo Park. Wouldn't change a thing about the location, it's just fantastic. It's too bad no liquor is permitted - they seem to be very strict on that -- but it's a National Park so not much to be done there. Emily Mah Rogers was very nice to work with and responsive to emails. The price to book the park is a steal, but with the added catering costs it can be a pricier venue that you originally think.
We enjoyed a perfect wedding reception in the Bumper Car Pavilion. Emily Rogers (contact person) was professional, responsive and super sweet with our requests. They made it so easy to have a blast at our wedding. You can't beat the ambiance of the neon and the history of that place! Book early!!
Glen Echo was the perfect wedding reception venue for us. The hubby and I had our 2nd date at the restaurant next door, so when we found out we could have it at the Park (in the Bumper Car Pavilion), we signed on the dotted line. After a formal Catholic wedding, we wanted to reward our guests with a party, and Glen Echo provided the perfect setting. You can't help but smile when you walk into the Park.
There are some considerations that are unique to the park - you have to pick from an approved list of caterers, only beer/wine and no candles. But none of those caused us any heartburn. Actually, only beer/wine was really good for the budget. The only "stress" I had was about the worrying about the weather, but that's inevitable for any bride that's having the event outdoors. For the bumper car pavilion, there's plastic that can be rolled up on the sides in case the weather's not good (thankfully we didn't need to do that - the weather cooperated!). We were so pleased with Glen Echo (Emily from the Glen Echo Partnership was a pleasure to work with, too), we'd definitely recommend it to...
Glen Echo was an awesome place for our reception. It was so fun to ride the carousel with our guests, great locations for photos all around the park (give yourself an hour! we regret only having a half hour), and the Bumper Car pavilion created great atmosphere with the christmas lights. Emily was easy to work with, even with a change in contract after a few months. Storing alcohol the day before was easy. Staff the day of were helpful keeping out some teens who tried to crash the party (it is a public park, and other events happen at the same time). It was one of the least expensive rentals I found. The one downside was the restrictive choices of caterers, most of which were some of the most expensive in the DC area. However, it did make the search less time-consuming and the least expensive catering option did a great job.
Glen Echo is a fun and unique venue. I went there as a child to watch plays and ride the carousel. As I got older, I always imagined my wedding there. We used the bumper car pavilion and were able to use minimal decorations to bring in our wedding colors and make the venue unique to the vision for our wedding. Our guests really enjoyed the atmosphere and especially enjoyed riding the carousel. Emily Rogers is easy to work with and the price is great ($2500 for whole day, we started decorating at 9am and the wedding was from 4 – 9:30ish). We were also able to get really great wedding photos due to the amazing venue.
We just had our wedding in the grassy circle/bumper car pavilion on July 9th, and it was absolutely beautiful. Emily Mah Rogers, the event coordinator at Glen Echo, is a pleasure to work with - very responsive, flexible, and understanding of the last minute changes and questions that come up as you get closer to the day. We went through several iterations of our contract and Emily never even blinked.
Glen Echo has an ambiance all its own, and it's not for everyone, but it's a gorgeous blank slate to work with and our guests loved the park. We even had a few wedding crashers from the swing dance! There are some limitations which can be frustrating (no liquor, very limited catering list), but due to the historic nature of the park it's understandable that you'd need to make some compromises. I'd definitely recommend the place without any qualms!
This was a great place for a reception! The arrangements were perfect, and Emily Mah Rodgers was the consummate professional. We rented the Bumper Car Pavilion and in keeping with the atmosphere, decorated the tables with lollipops and cotton candy. The guests loved the fun setting and raved about getting to ride the carousel. I don't think we could have done better.
This was such an amazing venue. I highly recommend to other engaged couples planning their wedding.
We LOVED this location as our venue for our wedding and reception - we got married in the bumper car pavilion. The price was very reasonable compared to many venues in the area.
We had our wedding reception here this summer, and it was wonderful! Such a unique and fun venue! The staff is wonderful, they provided a ton of support before and during the event. They have about 7 caterers to pick from and we were very happy with the list. As others have noted, there are some restrictions because of the park's status as a National Park and A Historic Landmark, but the staff communicates these restrictions clearly and they really won't get in your way. Everyone had a tremendously fun time enjoying the carousel and the beautiful ambiance of the park. Cannot say enough wonderful things about Glen Echo!
We had an absolutely wonderful ceremony and reception at Glen Echo Park. Our guests are still raving about how unique and fun the venue was, perfect for us as a couple. We had our ceremony in the Cuddle Up Pavilion and moved to the Bumper Car Pavilion for our reception. We chose a carnival theme with games and candy which was so easy and perfect given the venue. Our table names were old rides that used to be at the park :) Our guests got carousel tickets which they enjoyed. We had a daytime wedding in the summer so if we were to do it over we may have rented more fans to keep our guests cooler, but everything was fine. People were having too much fun to notice the heat!
As others have said, there are restrictions (only beer & wine, no candles, no taping to walls) but they're totally reasonable given the awesome history of the park. Emily Mah Rogers was absolutely wonderful to work with. She was quick to respond to emails/calls and very helpful with details, small and large. I wouldn't hesitate to use this venue again, we had such a blast.
Glen Echo Park was the perfect place for my daughter's wedding. The cost is very reasonable compared to other venues and the park is lovely. Emily Mah, who is in charge of rentals, was so helpful and found us an available date when it appeared that they were fully booked. The Bumper Car Pavilion where the ceremony and reception were held is so festive and attractive with fairy lights strung in the rafters that very little decoration is needed. We added only flowers. We had the carousel running during part of the reception and everyone had fun riding it. The park has a good selection of cateres to choose from and the one they recommended, Matters of Taste, was excellent.
I have loved Glen Echo Park since my now husband took me to my first swing dance there. We looked at other sites for our wedding, but we knew that this was the only place that we really wanted to be.
From our first meeting through the end of the reception the entire staff was wonderful to work with. Emily, the rentals manager, was so prompt in her responses and just warm and helpful. She would pose questions that I hadn't even thought of yet and didn't mind my emails that were all over the place with small details!
The venue is unique, and by choosing it you are supporting a really great resource for the community. We had our ceremony and reception in the Bumper Car Pavilion and all of our guests were delighted with the setting, the access to a working carousel and the playground for the youngest guests. The only downside for us was that the bathrooms are not attached to the venue.
If you are in the DC area you should definitely consider this for your ceremony and reception!
they were one of the easiest vendors to work with- everything was seemless. they should raise their rates- people would pay much more for such a cool venue
To be fair, Glen Echo can't be too flexible - as a National Park, there are certain non-negotiable restrictions on what sorts of materials can be used. They were very upfront and honest about these restrictions from the very beginning.
We loved working with the Glen Echo Park Partnership! It was a beautiful place to have a reception and tons of fun for our guests and ourselves. Because it's a National Park there are some rules that might be a problem for some couples (no candles, only beer & wine, etc.) but we were able to work around anything and it was totally worth it! Working with Emily Mah was fantastic! She always responded quickly and was incredibly helpful and professional.
A truly memorable location for a wedding. Emily, the rentals manager, has the patience of a saint and was supportive throughout the process. She was quick to respond to emails and helped with ideas about the space work best for us. As with any National Park facility, there are limitations on what you can do (no open flames, no nails/tape, no liquor), but all of those restrictions are worth it for a ride on the carousel in a wedding dress. Whimsical, romantic, artsy -- Glen Echo is a fabulous location for a wedding!
Our wedding reception at Glen Echo Park was absolutely PERFECT!! We had our reception in the Bumper Car pavilion and I would highly recommend it to anyone interested in a venue that is very unique!! The staff we worked with were all remarkable and very helpful. We couldn't have pulled it all off without them! The only drawback to GEP is that due to the fact that it is a historic landmark, there are a few strict rules and regulations that you must follow (ex. no flames or candles). BUT with a little planning and creativity, I promise you that the restrictions will not get in the way!! Our guests had a wonderful time and they will always remember our wedding because of the beautiful and unique park! How many people can say they got married in an old bumper car pavilion? Too cool!!
Glen Echo is truly a unique and special place. I am so happy to have had my wedding reception in the Bumper Car Pavilion and I think my guests would agree!! I think the unique and laidback atmosphere really helped people have a good time and enjoy the party.
The reasons for the lower score on flexability have to do with the fact that Glen Echo is a historic landmark and a National Park. This means there are certain restrictions that need to be followed (no flames, for example) and that there are only 3 caterers from which you can choose. However, they were incredibly flexible in other ways: they allowed me access to the Carousel for pictures even though it had been closed for the season and let me store all the decorations and alcohol in the basement of the Spanish Ballroom the day before the wedding so it was all there for set-up the day of the wedding. Also, the staff was great and always responded to my e-mails and questions (of which there were many).
I would definitely recommend Glen Echo for a wedding reception location to others.
Wonderful, unique location with a great staff! Lovely to photograph!
Glen Echo Park is one of the most FUN venues in the area. The open air bumper car pavilion has so much personality and lets you have an 'outside' wedding without a tent, but protected. The other 'rides' entertain your guests and provide a lot of conversation. The staff is easy to work with and very helpful.
My favorite place to photograph a wedding, or any event for that matter! Wonderful venue!
I just adore this fun wedding venue. It's a breath of fresh air in a wedding world filled with stuffy hotel ballrooms.
Glen Echo is one of our favorite places to shoot. Not only is it a historic location, it is FUN. At night when all the buildings and signs are lit up, the carousel is spinning, the place is *magical*. The management staff was present and available to all the vendors and the bride & groom throughout the event, and a pleasure to work with. Definitely one of my top recommendations for places to get married in the DC area.
Glen Echo Park is a wonderful place to host a wedding or other special event. The unique retro setting will set your event apart from the bevy of boring ballrooms. The different areas within Glen Echo Park allow you many options when planning the flow of your event. You just can't beat the the colorful atmosphere at Glen Echo Park. Glen Echo Park is also a great place to take engagement or family photos with your photographer.
Glen Echo Park is one of the most unique wedding venues in the DC area, and the perfect spot for a fun, unique celebration. The venue itself seems to put people in a great mood, and we've done some fantastic weddings there!
I had the pleasure of working at Glen Echo for the first time recently, and I can't wait to coordinate another wedding there. Everyone on staff there was helpful and fun, but still completely on top of things. Emily, the park's events manager, was a tremendous help in getting everything put together. The venue was beautiful, and all of the guests loved being in such a unique location. For brides and grooms looking for something a little different, I highly recommend the facilities at Glen Echo.