Monday, November 16, 2009

The Great Location Debate, Part 1

My hometown is in a really, really beautiful part of western New York. I grew up in the Finger Lakes region, home to wineries a-plenty, fabulous state parks featuring gorges and waterfalls, hills and forests that would be getting extra-scenic just in time for our September wedding, and a wide assortment of picturesque locales (vineyards! farms! artsy little towns!). I love it there.

Sources: here, here, and here.

Here's the thing, though: Steel City Groom and I have never planned on getting married in the place I was raised. For as long as we've been discussing marriage, the location in our minds has been Pittsburgh. We met there, we fell in love and spent four years of our relationship there, and in a few years, we want to move back, buy a house, start a family, and live our lives there. Plus, the ceremony location has a lot of sentimental value to both of us, which I'll get to later.

Steel City Groom's parents were a-okay with our plan; as the groom's parents, I think they were anticipating just going along with whatever we decided. My parents, on the other hand, were pretty reluctant in coming around to the idea of a Pittsburgh wedding. Their rationale for wanting us to choose New York was solid. Holding the event in Pittsburgh would essentially make this a destination wedding, as 95% of our guest list would have to travel to be there. It wouldn't be insignificant travel, area is a five-hour drive from Pittsburgh, and my mom's entire (enormous) family lives in Albany, which is a good eight or nine hour drive away.

All of that was not lost on us, and I fully recognized the time and money we'd be asking our guests to spend in order to celebrate our marriage. On the other hand, Pittsburgh had its own list of pros. While both sides of my family would have an easier time traveling to my hometown, Steel City Groom's family would fare much better going to Pittsburgh. My family is very big and his is very small, but I didn't think it was fair to disregard what would be good for him and his loved ones just because he's outnumbered. Another big factor was the fact that Pittsburgh has an airport, while the nearest major airport serving my area is almost a two-hour drive away. Nearly all of our friends live in Pittsburgh, near Pittsburgh, or somewhere so far away that they'd need airport access.

That wasn't enough to convince my parents that a Pittsburgh wedding was the best choice, though. Want to know what was? You'll have to stick around!

How did you decide where to get married? Did you encounter any resistance from your families, and how did you handle it?


  1. YAY Fingerlakes Region!!! I am and have been and Ithaca dweller since 2002 and I love it here!! We are getting married at a winery off Keuka Lake

  2. I looooove Ithaca! If I decided to get married in the region it would have been one of the first places I looked!