A guide to finding the right wedding venue in Kansas City

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Barns, churches, hotels, gardens, and museums make up the more than one-hundred possible wedding venues in the Kansas City metro. It can be really difficult to narrow down the selection to one place for the bride and groom or for wedding planners. This guide intends to simplify that process.

Considering the large number of reception areas available in KC, it’s worth noting that this article couldn’t hope to cover all locations. The article can, however, shine some light on types of venues in the area, price points, and capacity for guests. Trends do arise when you pick a certain venue type — whether a ranch, chapel, or botanical gardens.

Prices in this article come from rates found through the company Wedding Spot, Inc. Prices may vary depending on the season, day of the week, time of day, or the number of guests attending the wedding. To make things easy, this article rounds to the nearest hundred place on price estimates.  Contact the desired venue for price estimates.

Barns & Ranches

Rustic weddings promise affordability and space for a sizable wedding. These wedding venues usually reside in out-of-town locations, requiring the party and guests to drive far. On the plus side, barns and ranches offer a better sense of privacy compared to noisy downtown weddings. Check websites for wedding packages to find out what they offer or if you’ll need to coordinate with other vendors for services like photographers, floral arrangements, or cake. Several outdoor locations may have a more affordable upfront cost, but these locations can push the couple to seek outside vendors to fill in gaps.

Crestview Dairy Events | Lee’s Summit, MO$3,000 to $7,300. The venue offers space for outdoor receptions and ceremonies. If you have a big party, this might be the right location for you — it can accommodate up to 500 guests. The private estate occupies 31 acres of countryside. It is a 120 year old historic landmark with a courtyard and a wooden gazebo. The property has two lakes. There are four spots available for wedding gatherings.

Amenities include: separate bride and groom dressing areas, a dance floor, tables and chairs, outdoor lighting, and a day-of coordinator. Wheelchair access is limited. Wedding parties need to enlist their own caterer and bring alcohol if they desire food and drink as part of the wedding activities.

Crooked River Farm | Lawson, MO $2,500 to $6,200.  Crooked River Farm owns 83 acres of rolling hills. It includes a charming walking bridge where you can exchange vows at the river’s edge. A barn with high vaulted ceiling hosts receptions. Services include outdoor ceremony, indoor reception, and indoor ceremony. The farm is about a 45 minute drive Northeast of Kansas City.

The venue has enough space for about 120 guests. Couples also have the option to have the ceremony at the farm’s Cabin Hill venue — which is tucked away in the woods. That venue hosts more intimate gatherings of about 30 guests.

The Hilltop at Berry Acres | Odessa, MO $7,000. A quiet and relaxing countryside escape. The Hilltop at Berry Acres has several picturesque vistas open for weddings. An indoor hilltop banquet room holds receptions. This location provides catering. Amenities include: wedding planning services, dressing areas for the bride and groom, tables and chairs, and venue setup and cleanup.

The space can serve up to 110 guests. The space also offers private parking, fireworks, and music from a professional DJ. The groom’s suite is set up like a relaxing sports bar to keep the groom’s side entertained ahead of the wedding.

The Barn at Riverbend | Peculiar, MO$6,250. A family home barn that sits on the edge of the south fork of the Grand River. The wedding website has an easy to follow appointment menu to select a time to tour the property. The venue offers comfortable arrangements for up to 200 guests, a hillside ceremony, and a barn reception. The barn is air-conditioned and spacious. There is also a bridal loft and a groom’s cabin.

The venue allows for early decoration access. There is an open catering policy and catering prep space. For the pyromaniacs in the party, there is a fire pit. The property is a rustic dream and has several spots that would be ideal for taking pictures.

Alexander Majors Barn | Kansas City, MO$2,100 to $5,200. Centrally located in Kansas City this venue has capacity for about 150-175 guests. It offers outdoor and indoor spaces for both receptions and ceremonies. The Alexander Majors Barn has rustic charm without the inconvenience of a long drive. The historic house also makes for a charming spot to take pictures. The barn is about 32 feet wide and 54 feet long with a loft in the upper East one-half of the structure.

There is an in-house photographer and catering, which would take some of the decision-making off the couple. Amenities include: a bridal dressing area, tables and chairs, and a day-of coordinator. The wedding party will need to bring alcohol if they intend to have it for the reception.

Churches & Temples

For as many wedding venues there are in Kansas City, there are twice as many churches, temples, and places for worship. You can expect churches to have fairly comfortable prices. Some worship places may require marriage counseling or marriage classes before they will allow a couple to wed at its facilities. Some churches will open up the venue for free to longstanding members of their community. Catering will often come from an outside vendor. Many of these venues will not allow alcohol on the premises. The traditional wedding venue accommodates small and large party sizes.

Benjamin Banneker Charter Academy of Technology | Kansas City, MO$2,700 to $3,000. Wedding price for party of 100. The charter school meets in an old church building. The school decided to keep the sanctuary of the church intact. All proceeds of a wedding at the venue helps to fund the school’s efforts to nourish at risk youth. The sanctuary is meant for intimate wedding ceremonies. The space includes a choir area and pews. If the couple decides to have their reception at the site, the sanctuary can be transformed.

Amenities include: separate dressing areas for the bride and the groom, a piano, venue set up and clean up, and a day-of coordinator. Special restrictions: no rice, birdseed, confetti, etc. The venue must approve any outside caterers, but alcohol isn’t allowed. Music must end by 9:00pm.

Gashland Evangelical Presbyterian Church | Kansas City, MO $3,500 to $4,000. Traditional wedding venue. Church requires marriage preparation course before couple weds. The church has a stone exterior. Inside it has wood paneling and hanging chandeliers. The reception will be held in the Ministry Center. The ballroom-like facility is a comfortable space to host a seated reception for guests.

Amenities include: wedding planning services, dressing areas, a ceremony arch, candles, and tables and chairs. The venue must approve of all decorations ahead of the wedding. On the Wedding Spot app, the venue lists it can serve up to 300 guests. Catering must come from an outside vendor. Alcohol is not applicable.

Historic Mt. Gilead Church | Kearney, MO$2,600 to $3,800. A 30 minuted drive Northeast of Kansas City. The church is located near the Jesse James Birthplace museum. The historic church has white wooden pews. The interior has a great deal of wood paneling. Services include outside or inside ceremonies or receptions. The site includes a bridal dressing suite, a stage area, and tables and chairs. Its capacity maxes at 125 guests. Food and drink options must come from an outside vendor.

Built in 1873, the church has period-style architecture and furnishings. The two-acre property includes the historic church, school, and cemetery. The church not only caters to weddings; customers also book it for reunions, showers, meetings, picnics, performances, and parties.

Hotels & Ballrooms

On the other end of the spectrum, hotel weddings rack up in price, size, and excitement. Hotel weddings give the wedding party and guests the freedom to book overnight accommodations. Most of these venues offer catering services, cocktail services, and have decoration options. Hotels cost more but offer more space and amenities, including security. There will be more noise and distractions compared to a rustic outdoors hideaway, but hotels add convenience. The wedding party won’t have to worry about pulling down decorations and having to rush out of the place in time. Plus, hotels tend to have the services couples need, so they don’t have to look for outside vendors.

The Aladdin Hotel | Kansas City, MO $3,400 to $7,100. Located in historic downtown, the Aladdin Hotel offers an experience both modern and vintage. It originally opened in 1920. The couple can host a unique cocktail hour or hold a smaller reception in the Martini Loft Bar, a space on the mezzanine level overlooking the boutique-style lobby. The Ballroom accompanies larger celebrations. It has chic decorations, finely printed carpet, and large windows boasting singular views of the surrounding city skyline. It offers a wide range of amenities for the couple including: wedding planning services, bridal and groom dressing areas, a dancer floor, overnight accommodations, setup and tear down, linens and dinnerware, and a day-of coordinator. All food and beverage must be handled by the venue.

Embassy Suites Kansas City International Airport | Kansas City, MO$10,100 to $16,000. Have a gigantic wedding list? This space has capacity for 1,200 guests. This would likely be a combination of two gregarious people’s Facebook friends lists. Everything would be indoors. The venue has a high standard for its weddings and offers an elite top-of-the-line experience. Comfort is a priority at this venue. The hotel sits in the business district where hustle and bustle is commonplace.

The Grand Ballroom is an impressive 10,656 square feet. For the ambitious, it can hold the large wedding party of your dreams. It is the largest ballroom in the Northland Area of  Kansas. Another option for the more humble is the ambassador ballroom. Amenities include: wedding planning services, dressing areas, dance floor, security, overnight accommodations, champagne toast, and a stage area. The venue handles all food and beverage.

Hotel Philips Curio Collection by Hilton | Kansas City, MO$9,100 to $12,000. Perfect for the artistic couple. Hotel Philips has elaborate bronze and nickel metalwork, wood paneling, and stylish light fixtures. The hotel venue can hold up to 150 guests. The Crystal Ballroom on the Mezzanine Level has plaster architectural detailing and Tiffany Blue velvet drapes. The room is used for ceremonies or receptions. The open mezzanine makes a suitable spot for the cocktail hour.

Amenities include: coat check room, dressing areas, candles, champagne toast, complimentary bridal suite, and overnight accommodations. The hotel handles all food and beverages. There is a food and beverage minimum.

Harrah’s North Kansas City Casino & Hotels $3,600 to $6,100. The venue offers an exciting hotel wedding experience. The hotel has premium rooms, top-notch dining, gaming, and entertainment. The venue overlooks the banks of the Missouri River. There is over 10,000 square feet of meeting and event space. It can also serve a gigantic party — topping at 900 guests.

The Convention Center is set apart from the casino, ensuring there is privacy. The Nevada Ballroom can be divided into as many as five rooms to accommodate any and all plans and dreams. The Executive Boardroom offers privacy for intimate gatherings of up to 18 guests.

The hotel also offers award-winning culinary service. This is also the perfect place to reminiscence about author Ernest Hemingway who spent drunken times in a boat on the Missouri River and tried his luck at Northland casinos. Only the bold would want an Ernest Hemingway themed wedding accompanied with cats.

Wineries

Wineries offer a laid back venue that’s obviously open to alcohol. These venues typically cost less than a hotel wedding. It should be fairly private with the exception of maybe some people on the property looking for a wine tasting. These locations are usually easy to decorate or already have decorations in stock for you. Wineries want the bride and groom to have the wedding that keeps them happy and relaxed without over-doing the amenities.

Belvoir Winery | Liberty, MO$3,000 to $6,000. One of the more alluring venues in all of the metro is the Belvoir Winery. Rumors hold the Belvoir is haunted, but don’t let that scare you. The landscape is gorgeous and the venue is known for its accommodating services. It offers overnight rooms and has several areas possible for your wedding and reception. The venue is open seven days a week for free wine tastings and allows visitors to view all the historic features and artifacts the winery has preserved. The winery can serve wedding parties as little as 20 people or as large as 300.

Also, you could entertain your guests with a paranormal investigation or murder mystery dinner — perhaps as a bachelor or bachelorette party. Reception and ceremony locations include: an Italian marble gazebo, the vineyard, under the trees, ballrooms, an old ice cream shop space, and other photogenic settings.

Cellar 222 | Kansas City, MO$3,400 to $5,700. For the wine enthusiast, Cellar 222 in Kansas City offers a romantic location for up to 150 of your selected guests. The site includes a natural stone fireplace, hand cut travertine floor, and an old world bar. The exterior features exposed brick. It is free to bring your own alcohol, licensed caterer, and to use their tables and chairs. The 12 speaker sound system is also free for use.

The venue prides itself as one of the most flexible wedding spots in the area. Cellar 222 regularly ranks as one of the best venues in the city. Amenities include: a bridal dressing area, venue set up and clean up, and a day-of coordinator. Wheelchair access is limited.

Gardens

For the gardener, floral enthusiast, or outdoorsy couple – a wedding outside would be heaven. Flowers bring color to the wedding and set a happy tone for the day.

Beautiful zinnias at Powell Gardens This was published in Midwest Gardens

Powell Gardens | Kansas City, MO $800 to $2,000 for space + amenities (Catering price not included). Powell Gardens offers a wide variety of settings for couples. The scenery and world-class architecture will add a spark to any wedding day. The venue offers indoor and outdoor spaces for ceremonies and receptions. The site has a chapel, a lake-side ceremony section, a garden location, a grand hall, a fountain garden, and a barn. Some of these spaces are only for more intimate gatherings. The largest space can hold up to 200 people.

Ceremony and vow renewal spaces have a timeframe of up to 2 hours for usage… the reception areas up to 6 hours. Monday-Wednesday bookings receive a 30% discount. For additional costs, you can add celebratory fireworks, a butterfly release, champagne toast, and fireplace lighting. The venue has an approved list of caterers. Bars are available exclusively through the Powell Gardens Special Events Department. Bar Setup costs $350.

Brookside Gardens | Kansas City, MO  — $2,200 to $4,400. The venue has a wood deck and pergola, accented with string, café style lighting. Located east of the Brookside shops, the gardens can accompany as many as 225 guests for a seated dinner and 300 guests for a cocktail reception. The venue allows renters to use their own caterers. The wedding couple may bring in their own alcohol, but the couple will need to hire bartenders through the gardens preferred bartending company. The location is completely accessible for people with disabilities.

Amenities include: access to venue from 10:00am to midnight, tables and chairs, open catering and open bar, all teardown and cleanup, plus linens in white, black, or ivory. Brookside Gardens has partnered with Platinum KC to provide the wedding party with professional DJ and AV services.

Museums, Libraries, Historic Spots

Some of the most quirky and cultured spots in Kansas City will offer amazing spots for wedding photographs — but will likely cost more. Many of these specialty spots have catering lists — likely to protect historic buildings, art, and other works. Wedding guests will be happy to have an adventure away from a traditional wedding, and it will make for one of the more memorable weddings in their lifetimes. Many of the buildings for these kind of spots will have well designed facilities, lavish architecture, great wheelchair access, and customizable wedding packages.

Kansas City Public Library$8,100 to $10,600. It may surprise you, but one of the more accommodating and ideal wedding photography spots in Kansas City is the library. The venue has gained national recognition as a spot for book lovers to exchange their vows. The venue has space for up to 250 guests, giant chess pieces to take pictures with, and a parking garage made to look like a row of gigantic books. An added obvious bonus for book lovers is the chance to hide from the party and peruse all the books.

The venue offers spaces for outdoor and indoor ceremonies and receptions. Pierpont’s Catering will work with the wedding couple. Amenities include: piano, bridal and groom dressing areas, day-of coordinator, and catering.

Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art$4,100 to $10,100. This modern venue speaks to the couple who loves art and creativity. The museum’s architecture will work as a nice backdrop for wedding pictures. The venue can hold up to 300 guests. As for alcohol, the museum offers a hosted bar by hour and hosted bar by consumption. The museum has world-class art to entertain guests. The museum offers indoor ceremonies and receptions.

The museum’s exclusive caterer, Café Sebastienne, will collaborate with the couple to create the perfect menu — including everything from gourmet hors d’oeuvres to five-course dinners. Amenities include: wedding planning services, day-of coordinator, and tables and chairs. All food and beverage is handled by the venue.

Union Station | Kansas City$6,000 to $10,000. The Grand Plaza in the Union Station can accommodate as many as 2,000 guests for the massive dream wedding of a couple with a huge amount of contacts. The recently renovated historic waiting room takes people back to the glory days of rail travel. It has soaring ceilings and marble floors. The space could be setup into an old-fashioned speakeasy with the entertainment of the 1920s.

Standing reception maximum capacity is 2,000 guests, banquet is 1,300 guests, and holiday capacity is up to 1,000 guests. Rates go up Thursday through Saturday. It will include 30 tables and 300 chairs. The wedding couple must select from a list of approved caterers. The Planetarium can be used for weddings at a lower price.

Lofts & Restaurants

UNION | Kansas City, MO$6,100 to $9,100. The urban industrial space has three floors for wedding potential. The loft overlooks downtown Kansas City. The venue can hold up to 200 guests. It has historic brick walls, exposed wooden beams, and original wood floors. The site has an open vendor policy, no curfew, and a 24-hour rental period. Amenities include: wedding planning services, bride’s dressing area, dance floor, tables and chairs, outdoor lighting, and security.

The wedding party will have to find an outside caterer for food and for drinks. General liability insurance is required. This venue is for someone looking for something more modern and simplistic. Its website describes it as the counter to the ballroom wedding. The company website also has a nice floor plan, so you can get an idea of how to arrange the space.

Lidia’s Kansas City$3,300 to $4,600. Are you a fan of the show MasterChef? Regular judge Joe Bastianich’s mother owns this restaurant. Lidia also has made television appearances since 1998, but we had to throw in some MasterChef love. She also owns restaurants in Manhattan and Pittsburgh. The KC restaurant is glamorous and top-notch – as you would expect from a world renown celebrity chef. The venue guarantees you’ll have excellent Italian food. Services include outdoor or indoor ceremonies and an indoor reception. The space can hold up to 104 guests.

The loft serves as a reception spot; it is warm and inviting with hints of Tuscany. The loft space comes with views of the downtown area looking toward the Western Auto building. There is also the Terrazza, a glass enclosed space with views of Union Station. The venue will handle all food and beverage. All decorations must be approved ahead of time.

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