Over the last couple of weeks, there’s been a lot of attention being paid to the story of a gay couple from Dallas, Aaron Lucero and Jeff Cannon, who were researching venues for their wedding only to be told by management at one such venue that same-sex couples aren’t welcome there.
The venue that turned them down is The Venue at Waterstone, located out in Celina, which on its website bills itself as the “rustic, yet elegant venue for your Texas wedding.” Photos on the website show a building that looks like a ginormous old barn, set in a green field at the edge of a pond … or maybe that’s a creek. Photos inside show a high, vaulted ceiling with exposed beams, concrete floors … .
Yeah. The perfect rustic, Texas setting for a wedding. As long as you are a straight couple.
But same-sex couples looking for a Texas “country” setting with all the amenities for their wedding don’t have to worry about the homophobes out at Waterstone in Celina. If you want a perfectly gorgeous country/western/Texas setting for your nuptials with people who will be happy to welcome you to their venue, then head west to Honey Hollow Ranch at Runaway Bay, located northwest of Fort Worth on Highway 114, on Lake Bridgeport.
I went out to Honey Hollow Ranch last fall for a tour of the facilities, and I am here to tell you, it is one gorgeous place, with every amenity you can think of when it comes to accommodating a wedding party.
Honey Hollow is set on 53 beautiful acres, with a huge main house that can accommodate your complete wedding party — up to 14 people — either for the day or overnight, including separate suites for the wedding couple and their attendants to stay in before the ceremony.
There is a sitting room up front complete with a fireplace, where you can relax and get over those pre-ceremony jitters, a dining room, several bedrooms and bathrooms and a deep balcony across the whole front of the building. There is a newly updated kitchen, a huge “game room” in the back, open the height of both floors, with a pool table, a bar, a table for cards or dominoes and more. And there is a separate room set up to accommodate a nervous bride — or groom — with plenty of comfy sofas and chairs and well-lit makeup areas and full-length mirrors.
Out back is the in-ground swimming pool and spa, with four wood-burning fireplaces and shaded sitting areas. The pool can even be heated (with a three-day notice and for an extra fee). Further back, with the lush trees as a backdrop is the gazebo, a perfect setting for an outside ceremony, and to the side is the banquet hall, complete with catering kitchen and room to set up tables and still have room to dance the night away.
And by the way, Honey Hollow isn’t just for weddings. You can book the venue for corporate retreats, weekend getaways, family reunions … whatever event you want. But weddings are the main events, of course, and the folks at Honey Hollow offer all-inclusive package deals, and they have even partnered with First Financial Bank to offer options for financing the wedding of your dreams.
Visit their website here to schedule a tour of Honey Hollow Ranch. It’s like David Taffet said: Why waste time with silly homophobes turning you away when you can take your business and your wedding to a place that welcomes you.
— Tammye Nash