05 Jan Lessons Learned From Our Venue Owner
Our very own venue owner of almost 10 years, Sarah Legan, will be sharing with us some lessons learned from over the years. She has gathered all of her insights and advice from spending years building Southall Meadows from the ground up. After years of hard work, it is a proud moment to take a step back and see the progress made while still honoring the history of this land. Sarah sees an importance in being a steward of this land and restoring native plants and natural habitats for the wildlife that lives here. Along with the birds, peacocks and horses that live on this property, Bobbie (Sarah’s precious dog) is the farm gem. Ultimately her goal is to treat this land like we want it to be here forever.
What was the start or inspiration to creating Southall Meadows?
Creativity has always been a talent and an area of strength for Sarah. Her inspiration for turning her family’s farm into what is now Southall Meadows all started when she was helping prepare the space for her brother’s wedding. In some ways, the simplest and most complete inspiration is a true love for the space and land surrounding the Hall and Barn. The idea of preservation of both the beauty and uniqueness of this location and being able to share it are the driving forces behind the event venue.
Did you ever see yourself going into events?
Growing up, Sarah had never seen herself going into hospitality weddings and events, although now she looks back and sees how her art background seamlessly plays into her current role. As a sculptor, she was drawn to interactive installation which is very similar to a wedding or event space. The flow of everything as well as design details that create the look and feeling of a space and how people interact in that space is something that she has always been drawn to.
Where is your favorite place on this property?
From the 200+ acres of land, Sarah’s favorite places on the property are the ceremony tree and the field behind. Not only is the setting beautiful but it is the embodiment of all the incredible couples who have been married there. When the horses come out in that field it is always a bonus!
What is your favorite style that you have seen for an event or wedding?
Rather than a favorite design or aesthetic, some of Sarah’s favorite events have been based on how the event goes. The most memorable events have been when there is interaction between the couple and the guests. She loves to see couples going to each table during dinner so that they can have a chance to talk to everyone. In regard to design, bright colors are a favorite of hers and as a side note, she hopes that burlap never comes back ;).
What is something you’ve learned throughout your years at Southall Meadows?
Not only professionally but also in her personal life, Sarah has learned the importance of finding your people and to create a community. By doing so, there is a sense of support and reciprocity that makes any event day go much smoother.
Most important tip for soon to be brides and grooms…
Sarah’s best advice for brides and grooms is to leave all of the stresses of planning at the door and make sure to decide this day is about you and your fiancée. She adds that it is important that you find good vendors who help to ensure that your day runs smoothly. Take time to evaluate what is important to you on your event day and make sure that this is your only focus.
On the design side of your event day, lighting and drapery is a perfect way to set the space while still remaining cost-effective. People tend to overlook this detail, but it is a trend that is coming in and can serve as a bright and airy addition to the space.
And the most important detail to never forget, have your dog with you and dress for the occasion!