Of all the places that we’ve officiated, one of my favorites is the Gazebo at White Point Gardens. This area is also referred to locally as Battery Park.
It’s on the waterfront at East Bay St., South of Broad, and is a beautiful park lined with stately, sprawling Live oaks, grassy areas, benches and statues throughout. Not to mention the line of short muzzle canons standing ready to defend the holy City from Northern aggressors! Bordered by Murray Blvd., East Battery, East Bay and King St., it’s a predominately housing neighborhood full of mansions, a few B&B’s and gorgeous architecture.
With Spanish moss dripping from the massive oaks, it’s a very picturesque venue to have a wedding, elopement or vow renewal. We’ve done all three there!!
As popular as it is for weddings, there are some things to keep in mind when planning your ceremony at White Point Garden;
Although there is usually no charge to use the gazebo, you DO have to get a permit from the city of Charleston. 30 minute slots are the most popular and, believe it or not, are usually enough time. To apply for a permit, go here à http://www.charleston-sc.gov/index.aspx?nid=362
To obtain a permit, 14 business days (3 weeks) is required. If you’re planning for the High Season, reserve your permit as far in advance as possible. It’s 1st come, 1st served!
In the event the city charges for the permit, please note that cash is not accepted. Check or credit/debit card only. This is ironic, as the marriage license is cash only, no credit cards or checks accepted!
In the Spring and Summer, it’s not uncommon to see wedding parties lined up for their turn. This was the site of our first ceremony as From This Day Forward. When we arrived early to set up, there was a wedding in progress. As we got our things together for the set-up, another wedding party took over. Our bride and groom arrived as this party was leaving. As we were getting set up, the officiant for the next wedding let me know their start time and would we be done by then? It was a simple ceremony and I was confident we’d be done with plenty of time to spare. We were. By the time we’d packed up the car to leave, yet another wedding was taking place. As it was an elopement, the timing wasn’t an issue. If you’re having a lot of guests and plan on taking pictures of family after the ceremony, you’ll need to be aware of the time.
Parking around the park and on the off streets is free. It can be tight, however. Arrive early to ensure close-in parking.
Space is limited in the gazebo to 25 people maximum, including the bride, groom and officiant.
There are NO PUBLIC RESTROOMS South of Broad! Tell your guests to plan accordingly. Broad St is about a mile away, so it’s not an easy walk, if you know what I mean.
Although very photographic, lighting can be tricky with shadows, backdrops and such. Make sure your photographer is familiar with the park.
No alcohol is allowed in the park (except for sacramental wine), no loud music is allowed, and food and drink are frowned upon. Please plan on cleaning up after yourself as the wedding party before you did and as the wedding party after you will appreciate it.
When you're ready to have your wedding there, let us know. We'd love to help you out!