Milwaukee is an excellent city to host your nuptials if you’re dreaming of an outdoor wedding. This city is a bustling metropolis that boasts gorgeous waterfront views, ornate architecture, and plenty of green spaces.
Plus, it’s also budget-friendly. The average couple spent $25,593 on their 2021 wedding, which is several thousand dollars under the national average.
With that said, some venues here can certainly stretch your pockets. But we think that once you see everything that Milwaukee can offer, you’ll agree it’s worth it!
Here are 10 outdoor wedding venues in Milwaukee sure to wow you and your guests!
Mitchell Park Conservatory – The Domes
The Mitchell Park Conservatory is a unique conservatory made up of three striking glass domes, which house plants and flowers from different climates.
The Desert Dome features cacti and desert plants from around the world and The Tropical Dome is made up of lush flowers and plants from various tropical regions.
Meanwhile, The Show Dome’s theme rotates every two to three months. Previous themes have included a Japanese garden or scenes from The Nutcracker!
Weddings here benefit from the Conservatory’s lush green spaces and unique structures that add to the venue’s magical qualities. You’ll work with a wedding coordinator to transform the existing domes into your dream wedding landscape.
Note that the domes can only accommodate up to 50 ceremony guests, so you might want to make use of The Atrium, which is perfect for mid-sized to large receptions. Likewise, Greenhouse No. 7 can house between 400 – 600 guests comfortably.
Rentals include your chosen dome, a reception area, and planning and catering services.
Price Range: Contact the venue for a quote.
Capacity: Up to 50 people inside the domes; 275 – 500 people inside The Atrium.
Milwaukee Art Museum
Boating 25,000 pieces of artwork, The Milwaukee Art Museum is one of Wisconsin’s most popular art museums.
The building’s exterior boasts dramatic, geometric architecture, which makes the perfect backdrop for wedding photos. After you’ve cemented this special moment in time on film, it’s time for the festivities to start.
For an outdoor wedding ceremony, you’ll make use of The Courtyard, a space that features fountains and stone pathways, interspersed with trees and other shrubberies. With a little vision, you can transform this tranquil space into whatever your heart desires.
If you’d like to split your time between indoors and outdoors, then you can host a splendidly unique reception inside the museum’s dinosaur exhibit. Trust us, it works! You can also utilize The Planetarium or The European Village.
Rentals include evening time blocks (6 p.m. to midnight), a one-hour rehearsal dinner, access to the galleries, and support from the museum’s wedding planning teams. There’s also a bridal dressing area for you to use for all the wedding prep.
Price Range: $7,000 – $10,000.
Capacity: 300 plus guests.
Whistler’s Knoll Vineyard
Whistler’s Knoll Vineyard is a charming venue that offers rolling hills, verdant pastures, and luxurious water features.
Weddings occur in the Wedding Pavillion, however, there’s also an onsite barn that was built in the 1800s and still retains all of its historic charms.
The barn is where most couples hold their wedding reception, but you can keep your wedding a strictly outdoor affair if you so choose.
Of course, this gorgeous property offers several places to serve as the backdrop for your wedding activities, including ornate guest quarters, gardens, and other natural features.
Rentals include access to the ceremony and reception space, tables, chairs, patio furniture, and an onsite coordinator.
Price Range: $800 for the ceremony; $5,800 and up for ceremony and reception.
Capacity: Up to 200 guests.
Story Hill Firehouse
In most cases, seeing a firehouse on your wedding day means something has gone terribly wrong. In this case, however, it just means you’ve chosen a historic site to host your timeless event!
Enter Story Hill Firehouse, a former fire station that was originally built in 1927. After seven decades of operation, it closed to the public, and in 2019 the most recent owners transformed it into a charming little wedding venue.
You can start your day off by taking photos in front of the bungalow-style building, which exudes the historic charm of yesteryear.
For an outdoor ceremony, you can take advantage of the property’s front lawn, using the natural pathway as an aisle. Your guests will sit on either side, on the verdant green grass, and watch as you declare your everlasting love.
Receptions are usually indoor affairs, though you can stick to outside if you want. But just in case the weather doesn’t hold up, consider the indoor reception space which boasts high ceilings and exposed brick walls.
Price Range: Contact the venue for a quote.
Capacity: Up to 150 guests.
The Ivy House is a wedding venue in Milwaukee that started as a warehouse and later evolved into a nightclub. Despite its interesting past, it’s settled quite nicely into the wedding business.
A favorite of Milwaukee locals, this industrial-chic venue offers couples a friendly, hospitable environment to host their nuptials.
Outdoor weddings take place on the rooftop, a cozy enclosed space that features moss-shrouded bricks and gorgeous views of the surrounding architecture.
After you’ve said “I do,” you can venture back inside for your reception, a space that features high ceilings, glossy hardwood floors, and an open floorplan.
The best part about this venue is that it’s incredibly versatile. You can lean into its minimalistic approach, or create an enchanting space using flowers.
Price Range: $10,000 and up.
Capacity: Up to 400 guests.
Boerner Botanical Gardens
Boerner Botanical Gardens doubles as a whimsical wedding venue sure to have you thinking you’ve stepped foot inside a fairytale.
These Milwaukee gardens house thousands of colorful flowers and plants, spanning 12 garden sites, which make for a scenic backdrop for your wedding photos.
Perfect for elopements or micro/intimate weddings, you can take advantage of The Annual Garden and Gazebo, which features flowered borders, a water garden, and a stone border.
The Rock Garden Vista boasts water features, local Wisconsin wildflowers, stone pathways, and Japanese Primrose plants. It’s great for large ceremonies.
Capable of accommodating up to 300 guests, The Rose Garden is also great for large weddings. It features rows of multi-colored roses and a water fountain — perfect for a ceremony site.
Finally, the Shrub Mall is meant to mimic an English estate. It offers an expansive lawn and breathtaking views of the property.
Rentals include the ceremony and reception spaces, dressing rooms, and the assistance of the wedding planning staff.
Price Range: $2,250 – $7,500.
Capacity: 300 guests.
Caribou Bay Retreat
The Caribou Bay Retreat, located in the heart of the Amish Country offers unparalleled proximity to nature.
This retreat features 35 acres of majestic old-growth trees, gardens, and walking trails that you can utilize for your wedding activities.
Kick off your festivities by taking wedding photos surrounded by towering trees and foliage. Then, you and your partner can wed on an expansive lawn, as the sun’s rays peek through rows of trees.
There’s also an onsite chapel, which overlooks Caribou Bay, and a splendid garden for your reception.
And while the natural beauty is definitely this venue’s best asset, the wedding packages are nothing to scoff at! If you book this venue, you’ll have exclusive three-day access to the entire retreat, where your entire wedding party can make use of the facilities.
Plus, rentals allow for up to 16 guests to lodge in the guest house!
Of course, you also have access to the standard wedding amenities, including tables, chairs, and glassware, in addition to assistance from the wedding staff.
Price Range: $8,500 and up.
Capacity: Up to 550 guests.
Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum
The Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum has been in operation since 1966. The ornate property once belonged to The Smith Family, an affluent family in Wisconsin, but now it serves as a unique venue for art and also weddings!
This Italian-style mansion sits on a hill that overlooks Lake Michigan and offers couples near-endless spots for whimsical wedding photos, including lush, manicured grounds, stone fountains, and of course, the home’s magnificent exterior.
Most couples host their wedding in the museum’s Renaissance Garden, which features stunning water features, statues, gorgeous flowers, and other foliage.
The Bride’s Orchard is another popular option. It boasts trees with pink blossoms and a staired pathway that makes a great spot for a bridal procession.
A ceremony-only rental includes a three-hour time block, cocktail hour, and photoshoot. If you rent the ceremony/reception packages, you’ll have a nine-hour reservation, your ceremony spaces, a cocktail hour, and a reception.
Price Range: $3,000 ceremony rental; $7,000 ceremony and reception rental.
Capacity: Up to 120 guests.
Sanger House Gardens
If you want your wedding to be a tranquil, intimate event set against nature’s beauty, then Sanger House Gardens might be the perfect venue for you.
This garden space houses over 400 species of plants, flowers, and other foliage. There’s also a carriage house, frog ponds, and stone fountains on the property, which all contribute to the whimsical atmosphere.
Unlike some venues, where your ceremony and reception will be set adjacent to natural features, Sanger House Garden sits you right in the middle of the splendor!
You can say your vows on the lawn of the quaint carriage house and Italian-style cottage surrounded by thick shrubbery and local flowers. Then, once you’re officially married, you and your guests can celebrate your burgeoning love at a reception in a wooded oasis.
Rentals include the ceremony and reception spaces and assistance from the wedding staff. You’re responsible for all catering and alcohol, though they will recommend their preferred vendors.
Price Range: $8,000 and up.
Capacity: Up to 75 guests.
The Atrium is an industrial event space with a modern flair, located in the heart of Milwaukee. Perfect for urban-chic weddings, this space offers both indoor and outdoor spaces to accommodate all of your needs.
Head over to the chic rooftop garden space which features a splendid array of seasonal flowers and shrubbery. There’s also a glass greenhouse with a black border, which elevates the space even more.
You can exchange your vows, amid an urban landscape, as you overlook the Wisconsin skyline. Afterward, you can head inside for your reception. The Atrium also boasts an elegant ballroom space that features wood interiors and high ceilings.
Rentals include the ceremony and reception space for six hours, a covered outdoor space, and access to dressing rooms for you and your wedding party.
Price Range: $1,500 – $2,995.
Capacity: Up to 220 guests.