The barn at The Pines Event Venue was built on 1907 by the Aarness family to house their dairy cattle, and later horses and turkeys. Its beams, hand-hewn timbers shaped by hand more than a century ago, were hauled in by horse from nearby Star Lake. For generations, the small granary inside the barn, which now houses the bar area, held each season’s harvest of threshed grain.
The property remained in the Arness family until Beth and Jeff LaVigne purchased it in 2009. Something about the old farmstead captured our attention. As we walked through the buildings, each of them weary and buckling under the stress of time and neglect, our feet stirred up the dust of the long-forgotten memories of simpler days, when couples worked side-by-side to build their dreams. The call of yesterday refused to fall silent. We decided there was too much history on this quiet farmstead, and far too many stories, to simply let them crumble and disappear into antiquity. So, we rolled up our sleeves and began the beautiful, arduous task of borrowing yesterday to build a future.
The barn was our first, and what we had thought would be our only project. Jeff drew on talents even he didn’t know he possessed to replace the crumbling foundation wall and to cover the roof in tin. The following winter, a lean-to caved in, due to the weight of heavy Minnesota snows, which left the whole back wall open to the elements. This prompted Jeff to tin the entire exterior of the barn. Word soon got out that our beautiful farm had a gorgeous old barn that was perfectly suited to hosting weddings, and we began receiving calls from interested couples who wanted to rent the venue.
Our goal has always been to make each wedding a beautiful, hassle-free, memorable occasion for brides, grooms, their families and guests, so we’ve added options and tweaked our approach as we’ve grown. Since those early days, we have added a bridal house and bathrooms, as well as a second ceremony spot. Our staff will help you set up, direct parking (which there is plenty of), clean up, remove garbage, and whatever else we can do to make your day run smoothly.
Originally, the Bridal House was located south of Rothsay MN on the Haarstad’s farm, and was used as a summer kitchen. We had it moved here and refinished it in 2017. It’s evokes memories of young brides of a bygone era, who spent untold hours producing homecooked meals to nourish their husbands, and later their children. We think it’s a lovely, fitting space for modern couples to prepare themselves to say “I do.”
Our Bath House offers complete restroom facilities for your guests to use. Finally, no outhouse or Port-a-Potty to plug your nose and tiptoe into! Many barn venues don’t offer complete restroom facilities with running water, so this is something we’re very proud to provide!
The Pines is a perfect place to share vows, surrounded by the breathtaking beauty of the country sky, simple and clean, yet altogether capable of holding our thoughts, our fears, our dreams. And what better place to celebrate the magic of your special day, than embraced by the stars in the midnight heavens, amidst nature, stunning views, wildlife, fresh air, and memories that span all time.
There is something deeply satisfying about an intimate country wedding. Whatever it is that makes a rural barn setting such an enchanting place to say “I do,” it is now available to couples at The Pines, in the idyllic countryside near Pelican Rapids, Minnesota.