2018 KORTRIGHT CENTRE WEDDING GUIDE AND ALBUM (UPDATED)
Many couples dream of having a Kortright Centre wedding. Majestic trees, a low cost per person and excellent service are among the most important features of this wedding venue. Enjoy this DEFINITIVE wedding guide and if you are looking for a wedding photographer, we would be honoured if you considered us.
Romantic night shot taken during the reception.
1. KORTRIGHT CENTRE WEDDING COST
According to Kortright Centre for Conservation, the wedding associated costs are $140 per person and it includes the rental of the venue and an open bar. That places it among the least expensive venues in the Greater Toronto Area.
CEREMONY ONLY PACKAGE
The ceremony only package is $975 + taxes.
CEREMONY FOLLOWED BY RECEPTION ON-SITE
The ceremony costs $800 + taxes if you also have the reception here.The Ceremony Packages include
Rental of ceremony site for one hour
One hour rehearsal the week of the wedding
Table to sign the marriage documents
Chairs (chair covers come at an additional cost $3-$5)
Trees stumps for flower arrangements
Power for your music
SOCAN and Resound licence fees
The costs refer to the (Classic Menu Package)If you plan a wedding between April and October, the cost per person is $140 + Applicable taxes. Winter weddings are $125 plus taxes for November to March weddings. If your wedding is on Friday or Sunday (except for holidays), deduct $5/person.If you plan to use Forest Gallery for your reception, add $500+HST.
MINIMUM NUMBER OF GUESTS FOR A RECEPTION
From April to October weddings, the minimum number of guests required is 100 adults on Saturdays, 75 on Fridays and Sundays.For November to March weddings, the minimum required is 50 adults.
RECEPTION PACKAGES INCLUDE
Rental of the reception venue
Wine placed on the tables (during dinner)
Waiters and bartenders
Two (complimentary) vendor meals
Coffee and tea stations
Free parking for guests
Tasting menu for the couple
2. WHEN SHOULD YOU BOOK THE LOCATION?
As you can see below, this venue the second most popular venue in the GTA and you need to book it at least 16 months before your special day.
As soon as you decide the intended marriage date email or call the event coordinators to confirm availability.
After Casa Loma, Kortright Centre and Evergreen Brick Works are the most sought after locations in the GTA.
Usually, this venue is fully booked way before its sister location, Black Creek Pioneer Village.
Couples told me that in December when they got engaged they were not able to secure any date between February and November of the following year. Winter weddings are not that popular in Canada and you might be able to find a few dates available. To inquire about availability, please visit the event space inquiries page or call (416) 667-6295.
3. CEREMONY TIP - PLANT THE TREE OF UNITY
During the ceremony, you can have a tree planting moment where you combine earth from your families' backyards in a pot and plant a little tree. Such beautiful event is much more powerful than the candle of unity ceremony and one day you will take your great grandchildren to see the tree you planted on your special day.
Couples tie the knot in the Cathedral of Trees.
4. WEDDING CEREMONY LOCATIONS AT KORTRIGHT CENTRE
There are three locations where you can tie the knot and two of them are perfect for outdoor ceremonies: Cathedral of Threes, Forest Path and Forest Gallery.
4.1. CATHEDRAL OF TREES
Surrounded by majestic maple trees, this is one of the most popular locations to say "I Do!" in the Greater Toronto Area and can accommodate up to 200 guests in a theatre setting.
If you plan on having a wedding ceremony here, you will walk down the aisle on a downward pathway into an oasis of green tranquillity enhanced only by your preferred wedding songs.
The Cathedral of Trees is located 300 feet from the main building that hosts the Main Hall, the Glass House and Forest Gallery. Its proximity to the main building makes the Cathedral of Trees a better location for days when they call for rain.
After the ceremony, guests can have a lemonade or a beer if they are willing to walk to the main building. This spot is also perfect for large group photos. The towering trees offer the perfect backdrop for wedding photography and keep you cool during the summer months.
4.2. FOREST PATH
The Forest Path is an outdoor location located in a more private area and can accommodate up to 150 seated guests. In case the weather does not collaborate, please note that the pathways are not paved and can get muddy if it rains.
4.3. FOREST GALLERY
The Forrest Gallery is located in the main building and can accommodate up to 200 seated guests in a theatre setting. Surrounded by floor to ceiling windows, this is a perfect alternative to the outdoor locations for those days when the weather does not cooperate. The Forrest Gallery will be your ceremony location if you choose to have a winter wedding here.
4.4. THE GLASS HOUSE
The Glass House is an octagonal greenhouse located East of the Visitor Centre and it is a perfect location for rainy days ceremonies. It is surrounded by greenery and features wooden beams.The beauty of the Glass House is that it blends the boundaries between indoors and outdoors and no matter of the weather forecast you will have a splendid ceremony.While the establishment does not promote the Glass House as a ceremony location, brides have used it in the past for more intimate ceremonies up to 120 guests.
First look on the balcony by the Forrest Gallery.
5. FIRST LOOK LOCATIONS
Among the best locations close to the main building, we love the Glass House, its patio and the balcony adjacent to the Main Hall. There are quite a few outdoor spots perfect for a first look. Among them, we love the locations situated in the pine tree forest and the maple tree forest. During the consultations with our couples, we discuss the pros and cons of each location.
Because its pristine beauty, Kortright Centre is one of the most popular locations for pre-wedding photo shoots, engagement sessions and of course marriages. Here are a few spots perfect for the couple photographs.
6.1. THE MAPLE TREE FOREST
There are several places where we usually photograph and we love those located on the forest pathways. The image below was captured in the maple trees forest located in the south and west of the Visitor Centre.
6.2. THE PINE TREE FOREST
The pine trees forest has a different look in the reforested area located north and east of the main building. The trees are aligned and a good photographer can create splendid leading lines in the frame that will direct the viewers' eye to the subject of the photograph, YOU!
6.3. HORSE RIDING ON THE FOREST PATHWAYS
If you want to take a few photographs with the local horses, please discuss that possibility with your wedding planner.
6.4. THE GLASS HOUSE
In the unfortunate event that it rains, take a few images in the Glass House, provided that there are no other events happening at the same time.
6.5. THE THEATRE
As the establishment has a theatre, you can take a few romantic or funny couple photos or a few funny ones with the wedding party.
7. FORMAL PHOTOGRAPHY LOCATIONS
7.1. THE CATHEDRAL OF TREES
There are a few ideal spots for family photos and the Cathedral of Trees is one of our favourites. Due to the sloping pathways leading to the Cathedral of Trees, this location is ideal for the larger group photos.
7.2. GLASS HOUSE AND THE PATIO
If it rains, the Glass House provides shelter and if it isn't used as storage space (sometimes you will find chairs and tables stored there), it is perfect for the group photos for up to 10 people.
8. OTHER RECEPTION LOCATIONS
Many couples have an outdoor wedding ceremony and the reception at various banquet halls in Vaughan or Richmond Hill. Here are a few halls in the area:
Tip: if you have your reception at a different location you might want to ask the event space in the bridal suite is included in the package so you can get ready there.
9. KORTRIGHT CENTRE RECEPTION VENUES
9.1. THE GLASS HOUSE
This is a glass, wood and metal octagonal structure with glass walls, surrounded by trees. It is perfect for intimate weddings, up to 120 people. Please note that the building is not air-conditioned in the summer and while the staff is amazing at keeping the windows and doors open, it still gets hot at times. One of the advantages of the Glass House is that you don't need to spend a lot on decor as the forest surrounding it makes the place look splendid even when it is not decorated.You can dance inside the Glass House or on the patio under the stars and the candles, Christmas lights and tiki torches make the place look gorgeous.
9.2. THE FORREST GALLERY
The room can accommodate up to 135 seated guests and boasts spectacular views of the forest, plus, a balcony where your guests can mingle and enjoy a drink.
9.3. THE MAIN HALL
This is a room that can accommodate up to 150 guests and When this hall is decorated and adorned with string lights, it looks amazing.
10. STRING LIGHTS AND PAPER LANTERNS MAKE THE PLACE LOOK MAGICAL
If in a typical banquet hall you can have state of the art light and sound systems, here, with a few string lights the place looks magical and we can take amazing images of you.
Kortright Centre for Conservation offers plenty of parking spaces. Even better, parking for you and your guests is included in your reception package. Please note that there is a 2-minute walk from the parking lot to the Visitor Centre. If some of your guests require assistance, please make arrangements in advance with the establishment. They have carts that can transport elder guests.
12. PHOTOGRAPHY PERMITS
If you are getting married here, the photography permit is included in your wedding package. If you only want to take your engagement or wedding day photos here, you can purchase a permit here.
13. REASONS WHY YOU WILL LOVE THIS VENUE
The area offers perfect backdrops for your wedding ceremony photographs and bride and groom pictures
It is inexpensive by Toronto standards and all proceeds go towards environmental programs
You can have complete local and organic menus
It is one of the unique wedding venues in the area and if you don't have to have the reception in a banquet hall, you will love it
You can end the reception with a bonfire, a glass of wine, a romantic dance under the stars while the bridal party prepare marshmallows
There is plenty of parking
This is an eco-friendly establishment and uses renewable energy
According to brides we asked, they loved the service, the positive energy of the staff and the food
Children can do a lot of activities and the local theatre keeps them entertained
Parking is free
It is 4km from highway 400
14. WHAT CAN CHILDREN DO ON YOUR BIG DAY?
The packages include access to the theatre and children will have a lot of fun watching movies
During the day, they can visit the farm and the Earth Rangers building, which hosts a non-profit organization dedicated to providing environmental education to children. Please visit Earth Rangers' website for details about the particular programs they have.
A photo booth is a great idea that keeps entertained children from 4 to 104 years old.
This event space is one of the most popular wedding venues in the Greater Toronto Area, surpassed in interest only by Casa Loma and Evergreen Brick Works.In discussions with the staff and from former brides I learned that it common for brides to secure their date at least 16-18 months in advance. The chart below shows in green, the interest couples express in getting married here. In other words, in January and May we see most couples inquiring about getting married at the conservation area.
The most popular month for weddings is still August.The explanation of the high number of couples looking for a wedding location in January and May. As you saw in our article about engagements, 66% of couples get engaged in December. It is normal for them to start looking for a place in January of the following year. In May the weather gets warmer and couples who want to have an outdoor wedding ceremony start looking for their dream location.
16. TYPICAL COUPLE GETTING MARRIED HERE
Most couples who get married here reside in Ontario (97%) and 44% of all brides and grooms live in the Greater Toronto Area.
17. PLEASE KEEP IN MIND
Guests allergic to pollen, bugs, etc, should avoid the outdoor locations
Sometimes there are 2-3 wedding ceremonies happening at the same time. Please discuss that possibility with your coordinator.
Usually, there is only one wedding reception at the time, but please make sure that has not changed
Please have a backup plan if it rains
Bring a pair of flats so you can walk comfortably in the forest
Forest Pathways are not paved and we advise brides to wear a pair of flats or running shoes while we walk in the forest. That way your beautiful bridal shoes remain intact and your feet will thank you
Some brides think that the washrooms need a facelift
The area is visited by 135,000 people every year so please allocate enough time for any unforeseen delays
18. BRIDAL SUITE AND GETTING READY PHOTOS
The bridal suite provided by the establishment is not ideal for getting ready photos. The lack of windows and the fluorescent lighting do not offer the necessary environment for the beautiful wedding photos you deserve. Also, the makeup artists need natural light to see how you will look during the outdoor ceremony.We recommend our brides to get ready at one of the hotels in the area (please see the next section on the closest hotels) or at a salon. Also, if you are having the reception at a different event space, ask them if they will provide a bridal suite on your special day.
19. OPEN HOUSE
The establishment has an open house every year in January, especially dedicated to brides. Make sure you attend the open house to see how the place looks decorated and ask any questions you might have.
20. ACCOMMODATION FOR YOUR GUESTS
There are quite a few hotels close to the Centre for Conservation and here are the directions to several of them.
One of the downsides of the area is that it is fairly remote and not directly connected through transit transportation.
Guests can always call an UBER or a cab should they need a ride home. If you desire a location with a rustic feel and minutes from a subway station, you might want to consider Black Creek Pioneer Village, a sister location owned by TRCA.
When Elise and Dan asked me to document their wedding, I was in heaven. I visited the event space with Elise prior to their big day and I loved the majestic trees and tranquillity of the area, a perfect spot to create romantic images.
The conservation area is located west of Humber River, about 30 minutes north-west of downtown Toronto and is the perfect natural backdrop for photography.
To say that Dan and Elise love each other would be a massive understatement! When couples are so much in love and are not afraid of expressing their feelings, it makes my job as a photographer easy.
Their big day was filled with joy, romance and everybody had a fantastic time. A lot of children oblivious to the cameras allowed us to capture plenty of candid images. The couple had an outdoor ceremony, which gave us the perfect opportunity for us to take splendid photos. Dan and Elise got married in the Cathedral of Trees, a perfect setting for their pictures.
Dan and his beautiful bride had a splendid ceremony even though the weather did not cooperate. Minutes before the beautiful bride walked down the aisle, it started raining. Fortunately, it did not last long. By the time the couple said "I DO", the sun was shining and we could take gorgeous photos in the forest.
After the creative portraits session, we moved to The Kingbridge Centre for the reception.
During the first dance, we immortalized the cutest photobombing ever! Dan's nephew decided to join the newlyweds and made for a very interesting first dance, especially when Dan dipped the little boy. Scroll down to see that beautiful moment and also, the splendid night shots at the end of the gallery, followed by Tips on how to make your special day perfect and more.
23. VISITOR CENTRE AND VENUES RENOVATIONS
During the winter of 2018, the visitor centre and the three venues (The Main Hall, Forest Gallery and Glass House) were renovated.
24. ENGAGEMENT SESSIONS
Given its beauty and vastness, the area is a popular location for engagement sessions. The area offers visitors plenty of trails, a few greenhouses, wind turbines and solar panels fields, picnic areas and more attractions.Among the many festivals and events held here, we love the Maple Syrup Festival, the Four Winds Kite Festival, the Magical Christmas Forest, Owl Prowl and Astronomy Night. Time your engagement shoot right and you will absolutely love your engagement photos.
25. HISTORY AND LOCATION
The 325 hectares conservation area opened in 1979 and was named after Francis Kortright, a businessman, engineer pioneer in conservationism. It is bordered by Major Mackenzie Dr. on the north, Pine Valley Drive (on the East) and Rutherford Dr. on South. On the West, it reaches the East Humber River.
26. NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION
Please note that the establishment is a non-profit organization owned by TRCA (Toronto and Region Conservation for the Living City) and all proceeds from weddings go towards environmental education programs.