I am 154 weddings into my Dayton and Cincinnati photography career, and Saturday was my first time photographing a Canyon Run Ranch wedding. I cannot believe what an amazing Dayton wedding venue and Dayton wedding reception venue Canyon Run Ranch is.
When I first arrived, 30 minutes north of the of Dayton International Airport, I turned into the driveway and drove past a historic home and finely manicured lawn. There are signs everywhere directing you where to park. Before I continued on to the far parking lot past the two barns and the pen of goats, I stopped and audibly said to myself "oh my gosh...this is going to a freaking amazing place to photograph a wedding!"
As I walked from the parking lot to the main event barn, I was taking in all of the wedding photography opportunities this wedding venue offered. The barn, circa 1850, has a main upper area with bar, dance floor, tables, chairs, photo booth area, and DJ booth area. There are thousands of white decorative "Christmas" lights that line the rafters and the chandeliers. The lower area of the barn houses animal stalls which have been converted into changing rooms for brides, grooms, and other wedding party members. There is also a seating area with a second bar that acts as a quieter and smaller area for wedding guests.
Outside the barn and down the walk way lies a unique fire pit and seating area. Just beyond this is a sign directing guests 1/4 mile back to the wedding ceremony location. I had no idea what to expect as I began to walk up the steep hill. As I reached the top of the hill, there is a 10-acre field with a walking path cut through it, leading to the wooded ceremony location. The ceremony location is on a fully wooded peninsula that is surrounded by thousands of trees and a one-hundred-foot drop on three sides. There are handmade wooden and steel benches and a wedding ceremony arch that is reminiscent of the Iron Throne from HBO's "Game Of Thrones." This wedding venue is absolutely stunning!
Back at the fire pit, I went into the property owners' home where the bridal suite is. The part of the home that houses the bridal prep area is circa 1900, although the owners believe it may have been built as early as 1870. The upstairs of the home boasts a traditional bridal suite with mirrors, vanity, plush furniture, and the added bonus of a stained glass window from a church. Note: There are two 6 person golf carts that are used to transport wedding guests to and from the wedding ceremony location.
All of this made for one of the best wedding venues in the entire Dayton, Ohio area. I look forward to photographing so many more Dayton weddings at this rustic-chic barn wedding. It is a must-see if you are searching for available wedding venues.