ANSWERS TO FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Who can get married at The Howard House?
We are open to couples of all types and hope to make everyone who visits feel welcome. There is no place for hate or discrimination in our everyday lives, and this is especially true when helping to plan the perfect wedding for our guests.
What sort of packages do you offer and what's included in that price?
In addition to day rates, we offer full weekend rates with overnight stays for up to 15 guests starting at $3,600 for a peak weekend (less during off-peak months) and vary based on various details. The weekend rate includes the ability to host a rehearsal dinner, ceremony/reception, and brunch – as desired.
The full exterior grounds are always included and the interior of the house may be available based on your needs and guest count. Please contact us for exact pricing and availability for your desired weekend.
How long do I get the space?
Our weekend rentals typically start at 3pm on Friday and end at 12pm on Sunday, though we can be flexible based on the exact events you will be hosting. Daily rates are usually from 9:00am-10:00pm. Due to city noise ordinance, we ask that amplified music be completed by 10:00pm on Friday or Saturday nights and by 9:00pm on weekdays.
How many people can you accommodate?
We’ve hosted weddings of all sizes – from 15 to 250 and are happy with anywhere in between!
What do I need to know about the deposit and payment? What's the cancellation policy?
The deposit is $2,500 and due upon signing our agreement; this guarantees you the date and becomes a damage deposit once you arrive. It’s refundable following your event, less any add-ons or additional charges.
The balance is divided into 2 payments, usually due 2 and 4 months prior to the event date. We currently accept checks, Venmo, or Zelle/wire transfer.
For cancellations, the amount we can refund depends on the date of notification, however, the minimum amount would be the value of the security deposit.
Can I have my ceremony, rehearsal dinner, or morning-after brunch here? Where can we get ready?
For the ceremony - definitely! While there are many options, the front lawn is a beautiful location for the ceremony.
If rented for the weekend, then The Howard House is the perfect location to host auxiliary events, such as a rehearsal dinner or morning-after brunch. For day weddings, there may also be an option to add on other events, as needed.
During the rental period, our historical mansion is all yours! It’s been updated with state-of-the-art plumbing, heating, and cooling so you’ll be comfortable in any season. The downstairs is often used for the groom's party - with the pool table, TV, and full bath for them to prepare. The upstairs master suite is perfect for the bride, with a huge attached bathroom filled with light, mirrors, and an over-sized walk-in closet.
How much time is allocated for the rehearsal?
For weekend rentals, you can take all the time you like as the property is yours. If the space is only rented for the day, please contact us for specifics regarding availability for the rehearsal.
Do you have liability insurance?
The property has a policy, however, we require all guests to carry event insurance, from any reputable provider. As a benefit to our guests, The Howard House has secured a discounted rate through Griffin & Company Insurance (located down the road in Oakhurst) which can be acquired here.
Is there a separate space for cocktail hour?
While there are many wonderful ways to host your event at The Howard House the most common is:
Ceremony on the front lawn (with bride and groom standing on the porch)
Cocktail hour on the wraparound porch and in the upper garden
Reception in the back pecan grove
After party (if you’re still going!) in the screened in back porch, casual kitchen, or even the front porch
What's your weather contingency (backup) plan for outdoor spaces?
We can recommend a local tenting company that is familiar with our space and offers a lenient cancellation policy if the tent is no longer needed. For smaller events, the indoors of the property may be able to be utilized in casual layout.
Do you have a sound system and/or microphones for speeches?
We do have a basic PA system available for rent, that includes a microphone. If you will be bringing your own equipment for indoor events, please review the details with us in advance.
Are there any noise restrictions?
We ask that amplified music end by 10:00pm as to comply with the city ordinance.
What’s the parking situation?
We have about 15 parking spaces on-site as well as copious free street parking near the venue. Additional nearby lots owned by local businesses and churches may also be available, if needed. Based on the celebratory nature of the event, we strongly suggest carpooling and ride share, such as Uber and Lyft, which are readily available in our area.
There is additional parking at the back of the property that is ideal for vendor parking.
How many restrooms are there?
There is 1 full restroom available near the pecan grove for your event; we have found that for events under approximately 125 guests, this is completely adequate. For larger groups, restroom trailers may be an option.
Additional restrooms are located inside the house, however, these are restricted to overnight guests and wedding party members.
Is the site handicap accessible?
While the original historic property was not handicap accessible, we have added a ramp to the side of the porch for the benefit of your guests. For guests in wheelchairs, please keep in mind that the front and back yards are grass, which at times can be more damp or soft. We also suggest mentioning this to your guests who might be inclined to wear stiletto heels!
What is the trash and recycling policy?
We have large bins available for your standard refuse and recycling and ask that the caterer remove event related trash at the conclusion of the event. The Howard House will provide 5 lined cans for your use, as needed during the event.
Do you have an event coordinator or venue staff to assist with the event?
Our staff is always available for your arrival and to make sure things are running smoothly; we’re just a phone call away if you need something as the weekend progresses. Our whole team will be familiar with your event so rest-assured that any of us can answer your questions.
Day-of coordination services may also be available; please inquire about your specific needs.
VENDORS + DECOR
Do you have required vendors, including caterers? Can I bring my own alcohol?
We are extremely flexible on who you can use for your wedding – any licensed and insured company is welcome! We have some suggestions and are happy to send you our recommended vendors who are familiar with the property but we won’t be offended if you select someone else! The caterer is welcome to use our kitchen and appliances (6 burner stove, double oven, warming drawer, Thermador fridge/freezer); additional outdoor space can be tented if needed.
Food trucks are also welcome on the property but require advance notice and a discussion about placement.
To help reduce your wedding costs, feel free to bring any and all alcohol you would like to serve for the event. We do ask that your bartenders are experienced and preferably TIPS certified.
What items will I need to rent?
We own seating for 100 guests as well as assorted other tables, bars, patio heaters, speaker system, and other items you may want to rent. A complete list can be provided upon request. Please note that while there is no delivery charge associated with the rental items on-site, they do not include setup or breakdown (start recruiting friends now!).
If you are staying for the weekend, we have plenty of plates, glasses, coffee mugs, silverware, cookware, etc for your overnight gang to use during your stay; you’ll want to discuss the details of additional serviceware with your caterer for the big event.
Do you have any existing lighting?
The house is equipped with photo-sensitive landscape lights so they will turn on automatically around dusk; these illuminate the front and sides of the property.
Additionally, strand lighting runs from the front gate to the porch to welcome guests in and hangs overhead in our backyard pecan grove. For an added touch, 4 historic lamp posts add a soft glow in the back reception area.
Are we allowed to bring in our own decorations?
Feel free to bring linen, floral arrangements, garland, candles, lanterns, etc to make the space feel special for your event. For the outdoor areas, we ask that décor is not nailed into the building (such as the walls or porch columns) or any of our trees. Please be respectful of the landscaping but have fun!
If you are hosting any indoor events, please take note of any items that may be fragile and do NOT drag any furniture across the original heart pine floors, if it must be moved. Please discuss any rearranging you plan to do with us prior to the event.
Is there anything we can’t have?
Absolutely no non-biodegradable confetti/glitter inside or outside the house. We also appreciate you limiting the amount of trash created by favors and other individually wrapped items. Well-behaved animals may be permitted outside (for instance, if they are part of the ceremony), but it may be easier to leave them at home.