Exciting"and Different"Wedding Spots | TheUnion.com

Exciting"and Different"Wedding Spots

Photo courtesy of Ananda VillageCrystal Hermitage Chapel
ALL | GrassValleyArchive

Three venues for a wedding reception–one close-in to Nevada City, the other two far-out in the country”demonstrate the great variety of choices Nevada County has to offer the happy bride and groom.

The first is the Northern Queen Inn. Thirty-three acres of accommodations, gardens, and a fabulous menu to tempt you. Not only can you get married there and have your reception there, your guests can stay there in a cabin, chalet, or regular room, all can eat whenever they wish at the Trolley Junction Restaurant, and picturesque downtown Nevada City is only a walk away”an all-in-one deal. All this makes it quite convenient for having the rehearsal dinner at the Inn as well. No one need be worried about driving home after it; just walk across the parking lot for the night.

As far as where you exchange vows, there again you have choices. Either by the waterfall, out in the meadow, or even on their Wild West movie-like set at the top of the hill, which you get to via a little train (kid you not).

More choices: your reception can be in the main dining (capacity 110), on the deck (70), in the dining car (40) or in the caboose off the deck (18). $1400 buys you a premier package deal, including wedding and reception for 55 to 110 guests for 6 hours. Food is extra.

General Manager Karin Koons, who had her own wedding there two years ago (a very good recommendation), says they do about 30 weddings a year. Their record in one weekend stands at four. No question that the Northern Queen is in demand.

The second featured venue has a Grass Valley address but is on five acres about 12 minutes from downtown. It’s Wietstock’s Pavilion and Conference Grounds. The architecture is European, a mixture of Italian and Spanish, the grounds a mixture of manicured terraced flower beds and huge oak trees.

Wedding gatherings from 60 to 225 have enjoyed these facilities, says owner Polish-born Wilfried Wietstock, who as a Renissance man loves music, photography, architecture, and the Latin language, which shows up in tiles on the Pavilion as “E Pluribus Unum” (“In the context of weddings,” says Wietstock, “it means all focus on the couple.”)

Some couples have liked the place so much, he says, they’ve had their daughters’ weddings there as well. People are attracted from all over, such as the couple from Georgia, Russia, and all traditions, such as Native American. Indeed, Wietstock’s is booked every weekend in the summer, and he recommends reserving one year in advance. $2,000 will buy the place for a full day, or $650 for four hours, May through October, says the brochure.

The final featured venue is a tiny chapel about a half hour out of Nevada City. It’s called the Crystal Hermitage Chapel and is on the property of an intentional spiritual (yoga) community called Ananda. No restrictions apply as far as religious background, or lack there of, to be married here, but if having a reception as well it needs to be nonalcoholic, nonsmoking, and vegetarian, says the manager, Lalita Motyka.

A piano in the large living room of the close-by Crystal Hermitage is there to be played. The caterer can set up either in the spacious dining room or on the terrace in buffet style, and there is a full kitchen. Between May and June, says Motyka, a veritable sea of multicolored tulips will charm guests, while a stunning view of the canyon and Yuba River far below mesmerizes everyone. Not only that, there’s a guest house for an overnight stay ($110).

If being married in a chapel of vine-covered white quartz and stained glass windows, that looks like it harkens from Europe, is what you’re seeking, this might be the place. Seating 50 and costing $400 for up to 1 1/2 hours, the chapel is elegant, serene, and made for wonderful memories. Motyka invites you to visit, and see for yourself.

There are plenty more wedding and reception venues in the foothills that are guaranteed to delight and answer all needs. For a free Wedding Packet that includes everything you need to plan a wedding in Nevada County, contact the:

Nevada City

Chamber of Commerce

530-265-2692 or 800-655-6569


Grass Valley

Chamber of Commerce

530-273-4667 or 800-655-4667


Ananda’s Crystal Hermitage Chapel

14618 Tyler Foote Road,

Nevada City



Trolley Junction Restaurant

at the Northern Queen Inn

400 Railroad Avenue,

Nevada City


email: tjs@ncws.com;


Wietstock’s Pavilion

and Conference Grounds

16629 Dog Bar Rd.,

Grass Valley


Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Grass Valley and Nevada County make The Union’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.


Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User