Cleveland botanical garden wedding venue

Wedding Venue Tips – Cleveland Botanical Garden

The Naturally Beautiful Wedding Location

Some wedding reception venues are impossible to duplicate. This is because they serve a very specific purpose outside of their use as a space for events. The Cleveland Botanical Garden is one of those to the extreme. It has a look that you can’t deny is spectacularly unique. This is because its priority is to show off the natural splendor of the vegetation it holds. It’s the furthest look from a hotel. However, if florals are a vital component of your wedding vision, this is the superlative venue to express it.

Cleveland Botanical Gardens Has Dozens of Options

The Cleveland Botanical Gardens is made up of  10 landscaped acres. The formal and natural gardens make it one of the most sought after places in Cleveland for outdoor wedding ceremonies as well as reception options. Some of the most in-demand areas they offer are their Rose Garden, the Japanese Garden, a terrace with a fountain and lily pond and many indoor spots such as the Ellipse (featuring natural sky light and striking view of a Madagascar oasis), Clark Hall, with a sunset view and the Western Reserve Herb Society Herb Garden.

Planning Details

The Cleveland Botanical Gardens exclusive catering partner, Bon Appetit, has lots of custom menu options for wedding guests to enjoy. They will present your guests with innovative cuisine, alive with flavor. The Garden’s reception venues and reception halls accommodate up to 220 people for wedding receptions. Even with this many guests, there is still plenty of space for a dance floor and head table. A wedding ceremony can also be added to your evening rental of the gardens, and can begin as early as 6pm. The Cleveland Botanical Gardens website has a breakdown of each room including capacity for sit-down dinners, cocktail parties, and ceremonies. The seven main spaces have great flexibility as well as ways to combine spots to create a custom flow.

3 Biggest Tips from Jay R

Here are 3 suggestions Selective Sound Entertainment founder, Jeremy “Jay R” Rich, thinks everyone considering this unique Cleveland wedding ceremony and reception venue should consider before they finalize their plans.

Why We Love DJ & Live Band Entertainment Here

Jay R tells us why the Cleveland Botanical Garden is one of Selective Sound’s favorite places to entertain wedding guests. It’s uniqueness of design plays into the atmosphere and emotion of events which are key contributors to having fun.

Lighting at the Cleveland Botanical Garden

Because of the uniqueness of this venue such as the volume of natural light that comes through windows inside the space as well as all the seasonal options outdoors, lighting design is complicated at the Cleveland Botanical Garden. It’s not harder or even inappropriate to bring in lighting fixtures here, it just requires experience and the ability to interpret visions while keeping things realistic. Jay R gives you a few valuable insights to his process with lighting weddings here.

Why The Cleveland Botanical Garden?

Lastly, here are a few reasons for when the Cleveland Botanical Garden would be the perfect location for your wedding ceremony and/or reception. We hope these tips help your planning process go much smoother!

Bride, groom and their guests pose for a picture in the wedding mirror booth.

A Wedding Mirror Booth from SSE is a Wise Investment

Why just please your guests when you can really “WOW” them?

Wedding photo booths have been around for years. However, wedding mirror booths are still relatively new to the scene and always bring the wow factor to every wedding we’ve seen with one. Selfie stations at weddings are rather new as well but don’t make nearly the same impact as the mirror booth. In this blog, Selective Sound Entertainment’s founder, Jay R Rich, explains to us exactly why the wedding mirror booth tends to be the best choice for couples deciding between the different wedding photo booths.

What exactly is a wedding mirror booth?

” A wedding mirror booth is an interactive photo booth that utilizes a mirror rather than a traditional t.v. monitor. Therefore, the guests can see their poses before the picture is even taken. The monitor, as well as a camera, can be found behind the mirror. The mirror has a beautiful frame around it. Depending on the couples wedding decor, it can be changed from gold to silver. This way it blends right in and doesn’t take away from the rest of the ambiance.”

What makes Selective Sound Entertainment’s wedding mirror booth unique compared to that of other vendors?

“Great question! First of all, it’s important to note that Selective Sound has the original, most innovative mirror booths on the market. The quality of this mirror is much higher than what most other companies use. Our wedding mirror booths are extremely reliable and have the best performance rate possible. The software itself is top end and actually speeds up the process for taking and developing the pictures which is fantastic for the guests.”

And, in the rare instance the mirror booth would malfunction, how would SSE handle this?

“Well, we have rarely had to deal with malfunctions with our booths due to the quality behind the software. Our technicians stay with the booth the entire time to not only interact and guide the guests, but also quickly resolve any issues that may occur. All of our technicians are highly trained and proficient with the software. If there is ever a malfunction, it can typically be resolved with a simple reboot of the system. However, if ever needed, our wedding mirror booths are actually hot-spot ready. This allows for our technicians to enter the system remotely and provide a quick fix so it’s up and running without a long delay.”

Let’s talk more about the pictures themselves. For example, how good is the quality? Will they smear?

“The quality of our pictures, believe it or not, is the same as that of a photo lab. The quality of camera being used is the reason behind this. At Selective Sound, we use an DSLR camera. Meaning, our mirrors use true photography cameras, not webcams like most other companies. By using the DSLR cameras, guests receive crystal clear photos every single time. It’s also important to mention that all of our pictures are printed on real photo glossy paper through the highest quality printer. With our software, pictures are printed in 8 seconds and with absolutely no smearing.”

“The part that couples and guests love the most about our wedding mirror booth pictures is the fact that every guest gets a copy of any picture they are in. It’s a fun memento that guests truly enjoy. Rather than the traditional strip of photos, guests receive 4×6 color photos with their choice of 1-4 poses on each. Every guest that was in the picture gets a copy, which usually surprises everyone.”

The wedding mirror booth is completely in the open. Won’t guests be more shy in front of this than they would be in a traditional photo booth?

“Honestly, the open air design of the wedding mirror booth is an initial worry for most couples. However, what I have found is just the opposite. People become so mesmerized by the novelty of the mirror and so intrigued by seeing themselves they tend to actually act sillier. There just seems to be a different mentality when people can actually see themselves in the mirror rather than trying to pose in front of a monitor.

It’s also great for group photos. Since everyone can see themselves, there’s no guessing as to who can be seen in the picture. The footprint of the mirror booth is much smaller than that of a traditional booth so many are surprised to find out that more people can actually fit into the mirror pictures. While the traditional photo booth can hold up to as many as 12 people, the mirror booth can fit as many as 14 people in!”

Tells us about the costs for this “WOW” factor. What extra fees should we expect?

“Unlike most other companies, everything for the wedding mirror booth is included. With that said, we do have a couple upgrades you can choose from when it comes to the extras, if you so choose. What’s also nice for couples, who get their mirror booth from SSE, is the opportunity for bundle discounts. If our clients purchase our other award winning packages, the discounts start adding up fast. This in turn helps our clients purchase other things they want without breaking the bank.”

No Hidden Fees!!!

  • Price includes tax
  • $0 travel fee (up to 1 hour drive time)
  • Basic props. All props are brand new and can go home with guests. (Custom theme upgrades available)
  • Unlimited hours
  • Unlimited guest prints
  • Online gallery for bride and groom includes free downloadable high resolution digital copies of all pictures from the evening.

If you’re ready to order your wedding mirror booth for your big day reach out to Jay R here. Don’t forget, he’s always happy to answer any questions you may have as well.

Outdoor view of The Barn at Mapleside Farms in Cleveland Ohio

Spotlight Wedding: The Barn at Mapleside Farms

Spotlight Wedding: The Barn at Mapleside Farms

Apple orchards, rolling hills, 120 acres of nature’s endless beauty. A truly breathtaking backdrop while saying “I do”. And that’s just the start at Mapleside Farms. For your wedding, you will want to keep The Barn at the top of your list, especially if you’re considering a modern rustic wedding.

Photo credit from Genevieve Nisly.

The ceremony

While most venues have a set area to hold your ceremony, The Barn at Mapleside Farms has multiple! What’s even better is that each one overlooks a different unique piece of the property. Being nestled on part of the Appalachians, you are able to pick which natural landscape you prefer.
One option is to say “I do” on the cement pad outside of The Barn. Here, you and your guests will enjoy the view of Mapleside’s pond and apple orchard. At this site, there is also a built in pergola. Many couples have had their florists come to decorate the pergola to enhance the area to an even greater level.

With the natural visual scene set, the only other thing you’ll have to consider is the aspect of sound. The first piece of sound you’ll need to consider is the music during the ceremony. What could possibly be more romantic than live musicians? Perhaps a string quartet, an acoustic guitarist or even a harpist! At Selective Sound we have many options when it comes to live wedding music. And the last piece of sound you will definitely want to think about for this venue is a ceremony sound system. We highly recommend wireless lapel microphones so that the sound of you saying your vows will be shared with your guests rather than the hills of the Appalachians.

Rain, rain, go Away

Let’s face it, if having a wedding in the Cleveland area, it doesn’t matter what time of year it is, rain is always a possibility. Thanks to A Taste of Excellence, you have nothing to stress about should the rain gods decide to make an appearance at your Cleveland wedding. If those clouds start rolling in, even at the last minute, A Taste of Excellence’s team has their rain plan perfected. This amazing team transition the entire ceremony into The Barn in 15-20 minutes with it still looking fabulous. Likewise for transitioning back into your dream reception area.


The Barn has so much to offer you and your guests when it comes to your reception. Most importantly, A Taste of Excellence is exclusively contracted with Mapleside Farms and for good reason. Their food is absolutely amazing, they have customized menus and their customer service is impeccable. When you book your wedding at The Barn, an event coordinator from A Taste of Excellence will work with you to help create your unique event. From choosing linens to the menu to the bar menu, you will be in caring and very experienced hands.

Creating Your Custom Look at The Barn at Mapleside Farms


When it comes to setting the mood and creating the perfect ambiance at The Barn at Mapleside Farms, you can count on Selective Sound Entertainment to get it just right. As with past couples, SSE is excited to see your ideas and make your visions come true. By adding extra bistro lighting the porch will feel magical after dusk and hanging chandeliers inside will give the rustic charm an elegant feel. To add a soft touch to the wood beams you may want to consider adding some drapery. And for pops of color, to tie everything together, uplighting on the wood beams will look spectacular.

Let the Party Begin!


Due to it’s size, The Barn can accommodate both, a wedding DJ setup and a wedding party band, like Rock the House Live! Due to having over 30 years in the business, you have nothing to worry about when it comes to sound. Our Cleveland wedding DJ’s are highly experienced and very familiar with the acoustics at The Barn. They are also the best at getting every guest out of their seats and onto the dance floor! They are passionate about what they do and always have the bride and groom’s best interest in mind. So if you want your wedding to be your guests most memorable one ever, be sure to choose SSE, the most experienced Cleveland wedding DJ company.

Cleveland wedding entertainment company gives tips for Cleveland wedding venue, The Madison

Vlog – Cleveland Wedding Venue Tips for “The Madison”

Downtown Cleveland Warehouse Chic

The Madison is a newer Cleveland wedding venue with some very impressive roots. Built in the early 1900’s, The Madison initially housed the Republic Brass Company. After years of neglect, the 22,000 square foot warehouse was finally restored and transformed into a fully realized event venue.  The Madison brought together historic industrialism with modern minimalism to create an impressive event space.

The space offers white brick walls, twenty foot ceilings, and open layout which makes customization a breeze. The venue has table and chair options available so that couples can avoid the hassle of using a rental company. This one story venue has easy to access loading docks which helps greatly for load-ins. Due to large amounts of natural sunlight and creative design, the bridal party rooms are perfect for getting ready for the big moment. From a large private outdoor patio and 16 new bathrooms to 4 season climate control and track lighting, The Madison has so much to offer as a wedding venue. And from a vendor aspect, it offers many helpful things as well. A catering preparation area and ample electrical outlets help ensure a smooth set up and evening.

Selective Sound Entertainment founder Jeremy (Jay R) Rich has a lot to say about The Madison in his latest vlog.

Takeaways From The Madison Tips

Jay R was able to give an incredible amount of useful information when it comes to having your ceremony/reception at The Madison. You’re in good hands with them! Jay R also discusses the design aspects regarding The Madison. The Madison design, admittedly, is not for all couples. If you want a hotel space that is a traditional look, then this industrial warehouse wouldn’t really be for you. However, if you prefer an open floor plan that offers flexibility, The Madison may just be the perfect Cleveland wedding venue for you.

Features To Look For at this Cleveland Wedding Venue, The Madison

Some of Jay R’s favorite aspects of The Madison are the additional features that were thoughtfully added making this an ideal wedding venue. First, there are a few different options for onsite ceremonies. This makes things easier for couples looking to have everything in one spot. The private patio can be used for a number of different functions with many wedding lighting options including bistro lighting. Depending on your decor choices, these wedding lighting additions can help create an elegant or casual atmosphere. When it comes to both ceremony and dance floor sound, the acoustics are perfect. These types of details are important for anyone looking at Cleveland event venues and they are some of the things that impressed Jay R the most.

If you’re looking for even more information on The Madison, check out our Venue Spotlight.

If you want to talk to Jay R about working at this great venue, send him an email today.

Tips for lighting, entertainment and more for Cuyahoga County Courthouse weddings.

Cuyahoga County Courthouse Tips For Lighting, Entertainment and More

What You Need To Know About The Cuyahoga County Courthouse

We’re back with more information you can use to plan your Cuyahoga County Courthouse wedding! If you haven’t already, check out our previous post about on basics of this downtown Cleveland event space. We’re going deeper this time with more specialized tips including information on catering, entertainment and lighting. This is one of the most sought after and unique venues available to couples and that’s why it’s worth investing a lot of time into looking at the space with open eyes before committing.

It Has Character

While there are venues in Cleveland that are more affordable spaces to rent for a wedding, they usually require you to invest in decor in order to make it more grand looking. This is not the case with the Cuyahoga County Courthouse. Less is more because the venue is bold, big and breathtaking. When comparing venues, make sure to take this into consideration. The money you save on decor might be the difference you need to make the Courthouse fit your budget. Decor choices should be more subtle and reflect your sensibilities more than anything else. There’s no need (and no way) to cover up any of the look of the architecture. The goal should be to embrace the aesthetic and not overdo it. Here are a few tips from our founder, Jeremy “Jay R” Rich:


Lighting Design at the Cuyahoga County Courthouse

Not all lighting designs work in this venue. Because the building is not a neutral blank slate, going against its established design features is a waste if even possible. What works here is subtly. Warming up or cooling down the features of the venue is one technique that works and can make for some striking designs. If you start with trying to narrow down the feeling of what you want for the look of the night vs. getting into specifics, you’ll be in a much better place to collaborate with a true lighting designer who understands this venue. Ultimately, it’s your decisions that we’ll go with but we won’t hesitate to inform you on the building’s strengths and weaknesses. When you choose true professionals, you get more than order takers…you get invested consulting. Here’s what Jay R has to say about lighting at the Cuyahoga Country Courthouse:

Sound Works Differently Here

One thing you’ll hear about from any wedding supplier who works at the Cuyahoga County Courthouse is the acoustics are a little different there. This space couldn’t be less like a hotel ballroom with their uniform shaped rooms, typical ceiling heights, and soft sound absorbent surfaces. The Courthouse has none of those features! This is a marble very open space with pillars which would be a challenge for an entertainer less familiar with what they would be getting into there. Here are what Jay R says you should take into account because of the uniqueness of the Cuyahoga County Courthouse:

We hope all these tips we’ve shared as the result of years of experience serving couples at this historic and grand venue make a difference in your planning. If you have a specific question that was not addressed here, feel free to drop Jay R a line!