Parks & Other Ceremony Only Locations
Many couples who do not want to get married in a reception hall can have difficulty finding a suitable ceremony location. There are also those who are looking to simply get married or elope, have a small wedding ceremony, and then go out to dinner with family and friends. Some of these do indeed offer reception options. Many of these locations are free to use while others require a permit. Reach out to any site you’re considering in advance of your wedding ceremony or elopement to make sure they can accommodate you.
Many of the Gold Coast Mansions have also been receptive lately to ‘ceremony only’ weddings that are held early in the day. Brunch receptions have also been a nice and affordable alternative to the traditional Long Island Wedding. Many couples are choosing a brunch buffet for fewer hours in a more spectacular setting with live musicians and the mansions are PERFECT for this. So always remember it never hurts to call and ask.
This list is nowhere near complete, but here are some of our favorite parks, cool spots and other ceremony only locations!
Argyle Gazebo – Babylon
This is a Babylon Village location so contact the Village Hall, not Town Hall, to get the permit that they require. On the bright side it is a small fee to get the permit and there is lots of bench seating.
Babylon Town Hall Park Gazebo and Lake – Lindenhurst
This is the little gazebo or the lake next to Town Hall on Sunrise Highway in Lindenhurst. It’s always nicely landscaped and it’s free!
Bailey Arboretum – Lattingtown
Bailey Arboretum sits on the former estate of Frank and Marie Louise Bailey. The property was donated to Nassau County in 1968 after Marie Louise Bailey passed away and has been under the care of the Friends of Bailey Arboretum since 2006. Located in Lattingtown, they have a great outdoor setting, but for smaller indoor ceremonies the mansion has a terrific room with a fire place.
Bay Walk Park – Port Washington
Set along the busy Shore Road in Port Washington, Bay Walk park features an outdoor museum, gazebo, picnic tables, dinghy dock, and a close walk to restaurants. The gazebo is right across the street from the super-yummy Diwan Indian Restaurant.
Bayard Cutting Arboretum – Oakdale
There’s a little cafe in the mansion when the museum is open and the lawn behind it has a spectacular water view.
Brecknock Hall – Greenport
What a fabulous mansion! Lovingly restored and available for the entire event or ceremony only.
Brooklyn Botanical Gardens
Many options for ceremonies here! The Palm House is a Victorian Green House and Cherry Blossom season is always popular outdoors
Cedarmere – Roslyn Harbor
New York home of poet and publisher, William Cullen Bryant (1794-1878). Cedarmere is currently owned and cared for by Nassau County.
Fire Island Lighthouse
Great for that beach feel but while still allowing grandma to walk on solid ground! Most couples choose either the front or rear patio to accommodate guests, but there’s also a building next door for events.
Frank Brush Barn – Smithtown
Part of the Smithtown Historical Society, this barn with space for about 100 guests, usually hosts concerts and such but is for rent for weddings ceremonies with or without a reception to follow.
Garden City Gazebo
Right by the Garden City Hotel and Garden City Fire House, this structure is fairly large with good landscaping but bring some chairs for the older folks.
Gerry Pond Park Gazebo – Roslyn
Featured in the park are a gazebo and a working mill. Walking though the park, you will also be able to get a view of the historical buildings that line the park. Visiting during the fall, you will be able to see the phenomenal beauty of the trees.
Hallockville Musuem Farm – Riverhead
This is another big open space for rent. The Naugles Barn at Hallock Homestead is similar to the Frank Brush Barn with its rural and rustic feel. Perfect to those who want to rebel against the crystal and marble of a traditional catering hall.
Hempstead Harbor Shoreline Trail – Port Washington/Roslyn
Dotted with amazing waterviews and several gazebos, it’s a wonder to behold this 2 mile hike along Hempstead Harbor. Definitely scout it out first as it’s tricky to find the entrance and the parking just south of Bar Beach.
Long Island Maritime Museum – West Sayville
The south shore of Long Island has such a rich nautical history. Being on the water is, for many people, as part of LI culture as Nathan’s was for Brooklynites. Does this sound like you? Then this may just be your venue!
Long Island Museum – Stony Brook
This is where the Carriage Museum is. They have many different buildings and gardens for indoor and outdoor options.
Morgan Park Gazebo – Glen Cove
Residents only… But in the off season it’s usually unattended. Located at the mouth of Hempstead Harbor, it’s large and beautiful. There’s both a gazebo and an uncovered band shell with a panoramic view of the harbor behind.
Nassau County Museum of Art – Roslyn
A great site, with formal gardens including one with a huge Victorian iron work to frame the ceremony. Well worth a look.
I found this one through the Chamber of Commerce’s summer concert series. It is located at Nesconset Plaza – 127 Smithtown Blvd. Nesconset, NY 11767. It looked like a great place to have a quick ceremony!
Northport Harbor Gazebo or Band Shell
Located in the beautiful and historic town of Northport is a park on the harbor. There is more than one structure here to choose from and there’s even a little dock that goes out into the water. On the weekends, or if you plan on setting up seating and an aisle to walk down, you will want to check with Northport Village Hall to see if your plans require a permit. For smaller informal ceremonies with just a couple of witnesses, no permit is necessary.
Old Westbury Gardens
They have a special spot which they offer to tent to protect from rain and sun. I don’t believe there is an indoor option here without a larger commitment.
Peconic River Herb Farm – Calverton
Lots and lots of options here! Free for you when you have just a couple of witnesses. Or, fully tented receptions that won’t break the bank… All in the beautiful, natural environment they are known for.
Planting Fields Arboretum & Coe Hall – Oyster Bay
They have special Ceremony Only Locations in the gardens as well as opportunities inside the mansion.
Prospect Park Boathouse – Brooklyn
They do wedding ceremonies before they open and full wedding receptions after they close. There’s also a beautiful wooden boat that tours the park’s waterways. Having a small ceremony on the boat itself is an option! All you have to do is reserve the seats on the boat for your guests at a particular time and you have just chartered it!
Queens Botanical Garden – Flushing
There’s a beautiful Rose Garden here. One of our couples was so enamored with this place, they went to visit it weekend after weekend, just watching the other couples and waiting for it to be their turn.
The Bates House – Setauket
Formerly a private residence, the Bates House in Setauket is nestled within the Frank Melville Park. It is available for private functions year round. Parking is available on site with a separate entrance along the east side of the park. The Bates House interior has a foyer, terrace room, the Jennie Melville room, a kitchen, and an outdoor terrace. The largest room, the Jennie Melville, includes an 8′ by 20′ stage area. Totaling over 2400 square feet, the facility can accommodate 163 people indoors. It is a perfect location for birthday parties, communion parties, retirement parties, small weddings, retreats, receptions, conferences and reunions. Tables and chairs are included. The Bates House is handicap accessible.
The Setauket Neighborhood House
Alongside a quiet lake where swans glide, rests an historic jewel; a special gift to our community. It’s a charming spot where folks gather, it’s also the perfect place to celebrate those memorable moments in our lives.
Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park Gazebo – Oyster Bay
On Audrey Avenue, right by Town Hall. Very nice and well maintained structure. It’s not huge, but it’s not small either. It is used by the Town of Oyster Bay for events and speeches.
Vanderbilt Mansion – Centerport
One of many Vanderbilt mansions, Eagles Nest, can be found right in Centerport. It’s also the home of the Vanderbilt Planetarium. The courtyard is great and so romantic with a great view and stunning architecture.
Wantagh Park Gazebo
When you enter the park you will go all the way down to where the parking area ends and look past the pool area to the left. There it sits, with a great view of the water and reeds. This isn’t much in the way of shelter for more than 6 people, but if you want to be at it’s entrance with your guests outside to watch…. This may be the place for you!
Wereholme at The Weekes Estate – Seatuck
This Town of Islip property is another beautiful old mansion. It is available for ceremony only and for smaller weddings.
Westhampton Beach Village Green and Gazebo
At Main Street and the Roads of Mill and Beach.