Questions you might ask?
1. What is the capacity of the barn?
The barn has seated as many as 220--but serving was done outside, and tables later pushed aside for dancing. A tent can extend the capacity, and the "bank" or "bottom" of the barn has also been used-but requires use of steps.
2. Are chairs & tables included?
These items are available for rent from Cloverdale Barn or from other parties and are a separate cost?
3. Can I have an outdoor ceremony?
Yes! We have many use the area around the pond or rocks! We even have the bank of the barn as a rain option at no additional cost (some have chosen that area due to the hand hewn beams and stone).
4. Is there parking?
There are acres of field parking, and groups as large as 300 have easily still had extra space.
5. How do people with disabilities have access?
Unlike many places, you can drive right up to the barn or ceremony for pickup & drop-off.
6. I see globe and other lights are they permanent?
Yes, they are part of the barn rental.
7. Do you have a "preferred" list of vendors that must be chosen?
You can select your own caterer, dj, cake decorator, wedding planner, photographer, or other vendors. One exception in 2015 is Johnny Blue of Winchester has agreed to manage all restroom facilities and is offering a special price for Cloverdale Barn clients.
8.What about the farm tables, windows, crates, troughs and hand carved cart-do they cost extra?
Those items and many others are available for your use at no charge.
9. How much of a deposit do you require to "book" the date?
Fifty-percent of the base rate is required when the lease is signed, and the balance of the base rate and any other items (chairs, tables, tent, extra hours) is required 60 days before the event.
10. What about liability insurance?
Cloverdale Barn has a $1,000,000 general liability policy, but the client must also carry $500,000 in general liability coverage. Proof of event insurance is due 60 days before the event.
11. What about sparklers, candles & smoking?
Sparklers and candles must receive written or email permission within 2 days before event, and can be revoked at anytime. Sparklers are often allowed on gravel driveway 100 feet from barn. Smoking should occur at designated table using ashtrays provided. The massive 15 minute barn fire I witnessed as a child of our 4 barns due to a smoldering hay bale is a fierce memory in my mind (and likely the reason we renovated the barn on the farm I now live). To restore the hand-hewn beams (some with non-existent woods such as Chestnut) and build the 2 foot stone walls, would cost at least a million (and this is one of the reasons for the insurance coverage). Remember Sheridan scorched the South by burning barns!
12. Do you setup tables and chairs?
Table and chair setup is not a service included. Similar to the rental companies, items are folded and placed in the barn for each client to arrange to their style. It is easier to move folded tables and chairs. If setup is needed, we can recommend vendors.
13. Can we use confetti or artificial flower petals or use staples or nails?
Those items are very difficult to cleanup and are not allowed--consider clover seeds or use of real flower petals. Nails and staples are not permitted.
14. Do you have heating or air-conditioning?
The barn is much as it was 200 years ago, but some clients have rented heaters or air conditioning units. AirPac (Marlin Spencer) handles this for many events across the country, and has provided this option for the barn. Heaters may provide "hot spots" but the ceiling is steep and much depends on the weather.
15. What about birds, snakes and other "varmints"?
During May and the first few weeks of June, the birds have a generational drive to come inside the barn. Much effort has been done to limit birds entering the barn- several layers of wire netting in the eaves and surrounding the bank part have limited this problem. Yet, we recommend if tables are setup ahead, they should be covered until shortly before event. During other months, this seems to be a rare problem. Of course, they disappear when guests arrive. Snakes are not my favorite species, and they are around but have been told to stay away from my barn, and they seem to spread the word to other "varmints".
16. What about cleanup?
The barn should be returned to the condition found within 4 hours of event leased end time. If an event is not scheduled for the next day, this time can be extended with written/email permission within 2 weeks before event. Saturday events can "book" the day after for half-price. For an extra fee ($150) we can do a basic cleanup-- folding tables & chairs and returning to them to the barn and removal of trash bags after the event. Decorations left behind are considered discards. Clients are responsible for communicating to caterers or other vendors that may also provide the service. The damage deposit and other charges may result if cleanup is inadequate or not within leased time period.