The Barn at Silver Oaks | Frequently Asked Questions
Just about everything you need is included when you book our venue. The natural beauty of the barn and the property is breathtaking. Many brides have said, ” all you really need is a caterer, flowers, a DJ, a photographer, tableware, linens and a cake”. Almost everything else is provided as part of our package like chairs, tables, bars, dessert tables, etc.
How long do we have the barn for?
Typically, Fridays are for you to decorate, set up and conduct a rehearsal for the wedding. You can opt for having a rehearsal dinner at the property or at a local restaurant. If you choose the barn for your rehearsal, you will be required to have a caterer and a bartender, per State requirements.
Rehearsal Fridays have a designated time frame of 4 hours, starting at a pre-designated time of your choice with management. Rehearsal dinners are typically for the bridal party and their significant others, (max. capacity ~35 guests). The barn will have already been cleaned and prepped for Saturday’s wedding and reception, therefore, rehearsal dinners are conducted at our outdoor reception space so as not to worry about your decor being disrupted or ruined at the last minute prior to the big day.
Saturdays begin as early as 8am, many bridal parties have their hair and makeup done at the barn.
The wedding reception typically concludes at 10pm.
Do you do winter weddings?
Currently, we are open for events from the second week of May through October.
Is the barn heated?
The barn can be heated for those chilly, Maine evenings. We can arrange to have a propane heater rented for you from a local vendor and set up for approximately $250 dollars, including the propane. We have used it for days less than 30 degrees and it works just fine.
What happens in case of rain?
We have ample space and a backup plan in place for conducting the ceremony, cocktail hour and reception inside the barn. We have much expertise with this situation and our team are happy to assist during inclement weather.
Another option during bad weather are the rental of tents to cover the Ceremony Arbor, Outdoor Reception Arbor and Bandstand. We have made these rental arrangements for couples in the past and everything was simply beautiful!
Do you provide catering?
We are a venue only facility however; we have an outstanding list of preferred professionals that we can recommend to you for all of your needs.
A licensed caterer and a professional bartender is required for both your rehearsal party and your wedding reception. “Pot-luck” or “do it yourself”meals or alcohol are not permitted.
How many people can fit in the barn?
The barn has an internal capacity of over 700 standing guests. The formal seated capacity within the barn is ~400 guests. We supply 200 chairs and tables, should you need more, there are rental companies that have matching items.
Do you have lodging available for guests?
Directly across the lake from the barn are The Preble House Lodge & Cabins. Almost all of our brides fall in love with this spectacular property. We give it our highest recommendation.
We have an arrangement with HomeWood Suites, by Hilton. There is a dedicated account representative that will assist you and your guests with booking your rooms. We have secured discounts that are only available to Silver Oaks bridal parties and their guests. Here is a link for more information: Homewood Suites
Do you have an outdoor area for receptions or dancing?
Yes, we have constructed a tremendous, 80ft. long by 40 ft. wide, outdoor reception arbor. This arbor is covered with Edison Bistro lights and is open to the beautiful Maine starlit skies. The standing capacity is over 500 guests and the seated, dinner capacity is ~250.
We have also just added an outdoor bar pavilion adjacent to the lighted reception arbor. It works perfectly for the cocktail hour after the ceremony.
Do you have an area for a band to set up their equipment and play?
Yes, just adjacent to the outdoor reception arbor is our outdoor bandstand platform. This elevated deck has all of the necessary electrical needs for your band or DJ. Inside the barn there is also ample space and electrical for bands.
Are there any restrictions on music?
While there are currently no restrictions on indoor or outdoor music volume, The Town of Winthrop has an ordinance stating that all amplified music will be turned off at 10pm. This is consistent with most venues in the State of Maine.
Do you have an outdoor fire-pit area on the property?
Yes, we have a very comfy, fire-pit area for you and your guests to sit out under the stars and enjoy each other’s company, while in complete view of the outdoor reception arbor and bandstand. (You will need to supply wood)
Do you allow fireworks on the property?
Yes, as long as this Town of Winthrop Fireworks Ordinance is followed to the letter of the law: FireWorks Ordinance
Do you have an outdoor ceremony arbor?
Yes, we have constructed a beautiful, rustic ceremony arbor, complete with an aisle and bench seating enough for ~75 seated guests.
Do you perform the wedding ceremony?
Yes, We have 2 officiants on staff, one male & one female, they would be honored to marry you, just call us to make the appropriate arrangements. There is a nominal fee for this service. The fee covers; Coordination of the rehearsal, creating a customized wedding script, conducting the ceremony and the execution and submitting of all legal paperwork to the State of Maine. You are, of course permitted to bring your own officiant.
What do I do about my marriage license?
Marriage licenses are issued at the town or city level. The couple must visit their town office in person to apply for the marriage license.
If both of you are residents of the state of Maine, you should both apply at the town office where at least one of you is a resident. If you are residents of different Maine towns, you both may apply in one town or the other – you do not need to apply separately in each town.
If one is from out of state, then both of you should apply in the town where one holds residency.
If neither of you is a resident of Maine, then you may apply in any Maine town office. It need not be the same town where you plan to be married.
Your marriage license is valid for 90 days and can only be used within the State of Maine. There is no longer a Waiting Period from the time your marriage license is issued until your wedding can take place. The person performing the ceremony is responsible for filing the marriage certificate with the town office that issued the marriage license.
Do you have parking on site?
Yes, we have on- site parking for ~30 cars. Unfortunately, the vendors that service your wedding as well as your elderly or handicapped guests will often time take up most of these spaces.
You will need to make arrangements for shuttling to a parking lot 1,000 feet from the barn. The address to our remote parking lot is: 10 Summer Street Winthrop, Maine 04364. We recommend several companies on our preferred vendors section. (This also removes your liability for serving alcohol to your guests)
Do you allow dogs on the property?
We do! Just be sure that someone is assigned to clean up duties so that nobody steps in any surprises!
Do you provide tables and chairs?
Yes, we provide 200 of the most desired “Cross-back” Chairs as well as 20 rustic “Farmhouse” Tables for serving 200 guests. The farmhouse tables are 10 feet long and 40 inches wide. Each table will comfortably seat 12 people.
We also give you, at no extra charge, 5 Hi-Top Cocktail tables, 5 large, round tables and 5 large rectangular tables for specialty needs. These will need rental linens. The linens can be either 120 inches round if you want them to fall like a dress or 132 inches around if you want them to be tied at the bottom.
Our cross back chairs are for events held within the barn only. Should you require chairs for outdoor events, you will need to rent from one of our preferred providers. (Rental chairs and tables must match what we offer you in an effort to protect our image to the public) All rental companies offer exact duplicates.
Are we permitted to use our own caterers and other vendors?
Yes, since having a caterer at both your rehearsal dinner and reception is mandatory. If you are interested in using a catering company or bar service not on our preferred vendor list, this is fine, we just ask that you provide us with their name so we can familiarize them with our facilities. Other vendors are at your own choice and discretion.
The reason we recommend certain vendors is because, with experience comes excellence. These vendors have proven to be trustworthy, experienced and have met our high standards of excellence and quality.
Do you require any security deposits prior to the wedding?
You will need to place a fully refundable $500 security deposit. These will be provided 90 days before the wedding date and will be returned promptly after the wedding.
You will need event insurance that may be obtained by EventHelper, or a provider of your choice. (When asked, choose Yes, for Host Alcohol coverage and Yes, to Waiver of Subrogation) These 2 coverages are mandatory. Please add The Barn at Silver Oaks as an additional insured entity. (The cost for a standard 175 person wedding is around $175) For those having alcohol for their rehearsal party, please add Friday evening to your coverage.
Are there restrooms at the barn?
Yes, we have 3 separate and luxurious, air conditioned & heated restrooms for your use. We also have a wheelchair accessible restroom for our guests.
Are there catering facilities at the barn?
We provide a large, dedicated catering area with stainless steel tables, commercial sink, a commercial refrigerator and freezer & microwave oven. We also have two 24ft. long rustic buffet tables. Most caterers feel this suits their needs just fine, as most cooking will be done off site. If you need a full chef’s kitchen, our rental partner can provide anything you need for an extra fee.
Do you have an area at the barn that the bridal party can get prepared before the wedding ceremony?
Yes, we have a beautiful bridal suite inside the barn. This boudoir has 3 private dressing rooms, 4 vanities, a seating area with comfortable furnishings, a complimentary bottle of champagne & juice to sip mimosa’s with your bridal party, mothers, grandmothers, etc. before the wedding ceremony.
What do I do about Bar service?
Within the barn, we have built a very large & fully equipped bar and lounge seating area. We also have a beautiful, covered bar pavilion, with a fully stocked bar adjacent to the outdoor reception arbor for cocktail hours.
In an effort to make your beverage service easier to plan, the exclusive Spirit Caterers to The Barn are: Lilac Mixology
You are required to contact Lilac Mixology to place a deposit in order to secure your date.
Do it yourself and or BYOB liquor is prohibited by law. (Kind of like walking into a restaurant with your own alcohol)
Does the barn have a fire suppression, (sprinkler) system?
There is nothing more important than the safety of our guests. It is for that reason that The Barn at Silver Oaks Estate is fully compliant with all Maine Fire Standards. We have a state of the art fire suppression sprinkler system, code compliant exit doors, with panic hardware, full exit lighting and fire extinguishers in case of any emergency. Every barn venue in Maine needs to be compliant with these standards or risk having their venue fined and or closed down. This could perhaps be the single most important question to ask your venue. Without a fire sprinkler system, you run the risk of having an investigator from the Fire Marshall’s office show up on the day of your wedding and ask everyone to leave.
What is the procedure for securing my future wedding date?
In order to lock-in your future wedding date, a non refundable, 50% deposit will need to be placed. The remaining balance will be due 90 days before your wedding date. Once you are ready to book a date, we will send an electronic invoice via QuickBooks. You can choose to pay via all major credit cards, cash or check made out to The Barn at Silver Oaks.
What is your refund policy?
Initial deposits for securing your event date are non refundable as we block the date off of our website immediately upon booking, making the date unavailable for other interested couples.
If you are eligible for a refund, (Military Deployment), any service fees from credit card companies will be deducted from the total refund due. (Usually less than $250)
Do you barter for services?
Yes, we are open to bartering.