Sometime the location for a large luncheon or wedding reception can be the most expensive part of any event. There are some surprisingly inexpensive places that will allow you to bring in your own caterer. Municipal sites, public spaces, and local charities offer fantastic locations without too many restrictions.
Try city hall for a list a great spots for a wedding or party. Generally, city and county governments are in charge of the local, historic buildings that most people assume are not available for public use. Old city hall, preserved homes, and waterfront sites are frequently under the control of the local government, and therefore open for public use at very affordable rates.
Public beaches, picnic pavilions, and town gazebos are fantastic options for a free ceremony or reception spot. While sometimes restricted by season or weather, these sites have plenty of room and easy access for your guests. Make sure to check with the local authorities to see if you can reserve the site for your event.
For a small fee, local charities are frequently willing to rent out space for special events. Museums make a memorable scene and typically have large spaces for groups along with catering kitchens. Ask around about the kinds of space local charities have in their possession. The local YMCA, church, or LGBT center might be the custodian of a local gem. In addition, the fee for use could be considered a tax deduction.
With these lesser-known spots, you will have more flexibility and control over the event. Catering, decorations, and music require more of your attention, but your event will be customized to your exact specifications at an affordable price.