By Josephine Brennan
There truly is no better place to celebrate life’s best moments than Martha’s Vineyard. From the smallest gathering to the largest parties imaginable, the Island is home to spectacular venues that cater to any possible need you may have in your quest to commemorate the big moments in your life. From the scenic and historic to the chic and trendy, the Island has it all. Many venues will even provide you with onsite assistance from professionals to help you plan the perfect bash, leaving you and your guests to take in the vistas and soak up the moment. Here’s a peek at a few of the many places on the Island where you can celebrate your big day.
Allen Farm: Allen Farm offers one-of-a-kind vistas of the Atlantic Ocean, often with sheep grazing in the foreground. Divided by South Road, the landward side of the farm houses most of the buildings, including the farm’s wool shop. The seaward side is where large wedding tents are erected. During summer evenings, these tents can often be seen glowing in the distance.
421 South Rd., Chilmark
Beach Plum Inn: Surrounded by several acres of pasture, woodland, and ornamental gardens, this antique inn’s oldest beams and posts are purportedly shipwreck timbers. The inn overlooks Menemsha Harbor and affords lovely water views. Inn amenities include tennis courts and acclaimed in-house restaurant. Menemsha Village is only a short walk away.
50 Beach Plum Lane, Menemsha
Captain Flanders Inn: Located off North Road in Chilmark, the inn was originally built by 18th century whaling Capt. Richard Flanders, and sits on 60 acres of meadow, pasture, and woodland. In addition to the rooms available at the main house, the inn also boasts a stone cottage and a wooden cottage for lodging. Large wedding tents are frequently assembled in the surrounding fields. Menemsha is a short ride away by car or bicycle.
440 North Rd., Chilmark
Dr. Daniel Fisher House: Located next to the Whaling Church on Main Street in Edgartown, this Greek Revival mansion is also a Vineyard Trust property. Built for wealthy maritime merchant and manufacturer Daniel Fisher, who in the mid-19th century owned the largest whale oil works in the world, the Fisher House boasts formal gardens, an antiques-laden interior, and capacity for up to 250 people. Numerous shops and the Edgartown waterfront are short walks from the building.
99 Main St., Edgartown
Harbor View Hotel: From its rocking chair–lined veranda, this 123-year-old, 124-room hotel has perhaps the best view of Edgartown Harbor and the Edgartown Lighthouse to be had. Receptions can be held in the Edgartown Room, the Water Street Dining Room, or on the lawn under a pavilion tent. The hotel recently underwent renovations, and comprehensive in-house wedding planning is available.
131 North Water St., Edgartown
Old Whaling Church: The dominant piece of architecture on Edgartown’s Main Street, this Greek Revival church was commissioned by a group of whaling captains in the second quarter of the 19th century. The building is now part of the Vineyard Trust. Its features include a Carl Wendte mural recently restored by Margot Datz, a Simmons and Fisher pipe organ, seating capacity for 500, and reception space for 150 in the Baylies Room beneath the main church chamber.
89 Main St., Edgartown
Winnetu Oceanside Resort: Located in Katama adjacent to South Beach, the Winnetu is an expansive vacation and resort complex. It offers in-house wedding planning, in-house catering, extensive lodging capacity (including suites, cottages, and large homes), immediate beach access, and the chauffeured use of several antique vehicles.
31 Dunes Rd., Edgartown
East Chop Lighthouse: Situated on Telegraph Hill in Oak Bluffs, this cast iron tower was built in 1878. Originally wooden, it was the last lighthouse to be erected on the Island. Though the U.S. Coast Guard owns it, the lighthouse is managed by the Martha’s Vineyard Museum. The lighthouse underwent an extensive restoration in 2007. Beautiful as it is, it boasts practically no amenities, but affords wonderful views.
229 East Chop Dr., Oak Bluffs
Farm Neck Golf Club: Spread over 500 acres alongside Sengekontacket Pond, this 18-hole golf course in Oak Bluffs was established in 1979. The club boasts its own restaurant, the Farm Neck Café, which in conjunction with a club tent can accommodate very large gatherings.
1 Farm Neck Way, Oak Bluffs
Sailing Camp Park: Owned by the Patriot Trail Girl Scout Council until 1983, the 16-acre camp and environs are municipal property under the auspices of the Oak Bluffs Conservation Commission. The campgrounds overlook Lagoon Pond, providing a lovely backdrop for ceremonies. The main structure is simple and wooden with high ceilings, a full kitchen, and a beer and wine license.
177 Barnes Rd., Oak Bluffs
Martha’s Vineyard Museum: Overlooking the Lagoon and Vineyard Haven Harbor, with an expansive green lawn and beautiful landscaping, the Martha’s Vineyard Museum has recently relocated to the Old Marine Hospital in Vineyard Haven, and is available for weddings. The newly refurbished building is available for use as well, with prior arrangement.
151 Lagoon Pond Rd., Vineyard Haven
Tashmoo Spring Building: An old brick waterworks beside Lake Tashmoo, the spring building has been fully restored from a dilapidated condition, and is now managed by the Tashmoo Spring Building Area Management Committee. In addition to the interesting architecture of the pump station itself, the building sits in a lush setting, with pretty views of the lake.
400 West Spring St., Vineyard Haven
West Chop Club: Located adjacent to the West Chop Lighthouse in Vineyard Haven, the club offers members, or those sponsored by members, access to three private beaches, 10 tennis courts, eight of which are clay, 21 guest rooms, and picturesque seaside views.
162 Iroquois Ave., Vineyard Haven
Grange Hall: Built two years before the Civil War, the Grange Hall and its grounds host art shows, antique markets, and the West Tisbury Farmers Market, as well as large private gatherings such as wedding receptions. The spacious building was the site of the Agricultural Fair until the late 20th century, when it was sold to the Vineyard Trust, the entity that still owns and manages it.
1067 State Rd., West Tisbury
Agricultural Hall: With a maximum capacity of over 1,500 people, this expansive wooden structure boasts one of the largest interior spaces on Martha’s Vineyard. With horse corrals and woodlands in the background, the Ag Hall sits in a vast field off State and Panhandle roads in West Tisbury. Home of the Agricultural Fair and the fair’s host, the Agricultural Society, its amenities include a full kitchen, men’s and women’s restrooms, and nearly infinite parking.
35 Panhandle Rd., West Tisbury