Building the Dream

June 3rd, 2016 marked two years of planning, dreaming, and hard work, but that day will forever be part of our story. After two years of working with the Brown County Indiana Planning Commission on zoning, we were finally approved. When we submitted our request to the county, we included this statement, “The vision of The Wilds is to create a Private Recreational Development that contributes to the economic well being of Brown County while displaying a strong reverence and regard for the surrounding agricultural based, rural environment.” It’s a pretty fancy way of putting words to our goal: to bolster our community and provide a place where people are welcomed, and cared for. A place where people are treated like family.

But, the journey wasn’t easy, and it didn’t happen with a snap of my fingers (no matter how many episodes of HGTV I watch, it just doesn’t quite go like that!). With five seasons of Fixer Upper under my belt, and no less than two-thousand pins to my venue board, it was time to put pen to paper, and make foundational plans. Trying to bring my mental vision to life was harder than I imagined; we didn’t want to be another “rustic barn venue”, nor a ballroom that lacked character. We wanted our guests to feel elegant, sophisticated, luxurious, and also comfortable enough to celebrate the biggest moments of their lives with their closest friends.

With the help of some very talented people, including Matt Ellenwood of Matt Black Architecture in Bloomington and builder Shaun York of York & Son Enterprises LLC in Nashville, IN, my thoughts and ideas were soon rendered into tangible shiplap walls, grand beams, and sweeping windows. The modern farmhouse aesthetic paired with the authentic rural landscape offers clients a picturesque backdrop for wedding and event photography. It boasts soaring timber beams and high ceilings, while also offering discerning clients all the amenities they could need. In addition to the unique venue and irreplaceable landscape nestled right in the heart of the Brown County Yellowwood State Forest, we also have a built-in rain plan in case the weather doesn’t cooperate. Here are just some of our many features:

  • Unobstructed 180 degree views of the Hills of Brown County
  • Ultimate privacy, surrounded by Yellowwood State Forest
  • Only 12 min to Bloomington, Indiana College Mall and 12 min to downtown Nashville, Indiana
  • Ability to host up to 200 guests
  • Pre-event coordination, set-up & post-event cleaning!
  • Private access to venue and grounds for entire rental period
  • Handcrafted wood tables and metal cafe chairs for inside dining
  • Separate set of folding chairs to accommodate outside ceremonies
  • Event staff, including waiters, waitresses and bartenders
  • Access to additional decorative items at no additional cost
  • Modern indoor bar and optional second outdoor bar
  • Chic bridal suite with hair and make-up bar
  • Dapper parlor for groom’s staging area or a number of Pinterest-worthy plans
  • Large modern commercial restrooms  (no waiting, and especially not for a porta-potty!)
  • Handicap accessibility throughout
  • Overnight parking if needed
  • Heating and air conditioning for year round comfort
  • Double-sided indoor/outdoor stone fireplace
  • Floor to ceiling windows and french doors on every wall (for the ultimate natural lighting, seamless  views of the outdoors even if weather pushes you inside)
  • Large concrete outdoor patio with beautiful pergola for outdoor reception and/or reception
  • Built-in Plan B in case of inclement weather


Below Renderings by Matte Black Architecture

This has been a true journey in every sense of the word, but one that I know will be worth it in the end. I can’t wait to throw our doors open and welcome the many memories that are yet to be made here.

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