Frequently Asked Questions
Will we need an off duty police officer?
Richmond county requires an officer at any event where alcohol is being served no matter the number of guests. Usually you will need an officer when guests start drinking till the end of the event at 10pm. On average it's about 4-5 hours @ $30 per hour payable to the officer at the end of the night. We will arrange this for you. If you are having a friend provide this service, they must be Richmond county and in uniform.
The officer will not be able to leave until all of the alcohol is put away. We recommend having the DJ announce a last call around 9:30pm, and having a friend or two that can help put the alcohol away for you.
How are payments made? How much is the deposit?
Saturday Wedding - $3,000
Deposit = $500 - nonrefundable, due with signed contract
1st Payment = $1,250 + $150 for damage deposit
2nd Payment = $1,250 + $150 for damage deposit
Total = $3,300 ($300 will be returned after the event)
Friday or Sunday Wedding - $2,500
Deposit = $500 - nonrefundable, due with signed contract
1st Payment = $1,000 + 150 for damage deposit
2nd Payment = $1,000 + 150 for damage deposit
Total = $2,800 ($300 will be returned after the event)
The damage deposit of $300, which is refundable, is usually returned within 7 business days, and is split in half and added to the 1st and 2nd payments.
Does Windsor Manor require a caterer?
One of the perks of having a wedding at Windsor Manor is that you are free to hire your own caterer.
The most popular option is BBQ and there are a variety of restaurants and caterers in Augusta that can accomdate in a range of $9 - $14 per person.
What about centerpieces? Candles?
We provide crushed ivory taffeta linens at no additional charge, as well as lanterns & LED candles (see picture) that can be used as table centerpieces. We also have wood slabs to set them on, and artificial greenery if you choose not to bring your own.
If you are using our linens then we ask that you do not use any open flame candles on the tables, however if you are bringing your own linens, candles are permitted so long as they are in a container of some sort.
What about planning for our wedding?
We offer two planning visits to all couples.
Your first planning visit, you will want to bring family, planners, florist, and your caterer to see the space.
Some brides like to come out a second time to see the venue a month or two before the wedding to tie up any loose ends.
What about alcohol? Drinks?
Most couples like to supply their own beer or wine to save money. Some bring liquor and some don't. Another popular option is to have two signature drinks in drink dispensers, one chosen by him and one by her.
Beer bottles are sometimes dropped and make the trash very heavy, so we ask that if you are not doing a keg to do always do canned beer. We also recomend a couple twelve packs for your soda drinkers/mixed drinks and the small 6 ounce clear tumblers so that people don't waste wine.
We do not supply ice so most couples will usually task a family member or groomsman with picking up some ice an hour or two before the guests arrive. There is a sprint gas station across the street, and a Twice the Ice up the road. We have one ice chest you may use and you are welcome to bring an additional. You will probably also want to task someone with organizing the bar if you are not using a bartender.
Most caterers will offer to bring sweet tea and lemonade and set it up for you, however when they are finished up around 8 or 9 they will often take that with them so you are welcomed to use our drink dispensers.
You do not need a permit to serve alcohol, but you will need an officer. Officers are $30 per hour and we will arrange for them to be here for you when we sign the contract. Typically you will just pay them cash at the end of the night and they will need to be here once guests begin to drink. The officer cannot leave the venue until any left over alcohol is either dumped out or put in someone's car so we recommend having a person to help with that.
What is your pet policy?
Trained service dogs must display their official Service Animal attire, must be leashed and remain with their owners at all times.
Dogs or pets whose sole function is providing comfort (emotional support dogs) do not qualify as service animals under the ADA and for insurance and liability reasons are not permitted.
For more information on what qualifies as a service dog, please see
What is the inclement weather plan?
Our covered pavilion is 60' x 25' and was built for intimate weddings of 100 or less. Think of it as a permanent tent.
1) It's raining all day and it's not stopping:
When we built the pavilion, we made sure it was centered on the side door. The wedding party would come out the side door directly into the pavilion, and would proceed up the middle of the pavilion to the carved panels at the end. Guests would be seated at tables. We do have clear plastic curtains that can be lowered to help keep out wind and rain.
2) It's patchy rain and we're not sure what's going to happen at the time of the ceremony:
We would set up the chairs in the garden and if necessary dry them off before the guests arrive. We've delayed a few ceremonies a few minutes to catch a break in the weather. In this scenario we usually open the bar so guests can enjoy a glass of wine and socialize in the pavilion. When the bride is ready we ask the DJ to ask guests to make their way to the garden area.
We have separate sets of chairs for the pavilion and garden so there is never any need to move chairs.
Does Windsor Manor have dressing rooms?
We have a beautiful Bride's Boudoir with five makeup tables, separate changing room where dresses can be hung, and a private restroom with shower. There is a mini fridge with a compartment for ice so you can keep your drinks cold.
We have a changing room and lounge with TV for the groom with an additional restroom across the hall. There is also a mini fridge with a compartment for ice. The guys are welcome to use the hall bathroom shower.
What is a typical timeline?
The contract for the venue is from 11am to 11pm. The gate opens at 11 and that is when your florist, baker, or planner are welcome to come start setting up. At this time, Windsor Manor will begin setting up tables and chairs for the ceremony and reception.
11:00am - Bride arrives to do hair and makeup / dress
2:00pm - Photographer arrives / cake arrives
2:30pm - Groom / groomsmen arrive to get dressed
3:00pm - Caterer arrives to set up
3:30pm - DJ arrives
4:30pm - Guests being to arrive / optional cocktail hour before ceremony
5:00pm - Ceremony (garden is in shade by this time)
5:30pm - Photos / Cocktail Hour
6:00pm - Buffet / Social time
7:00pm - Cake Cutting / Dancing
10:00pm - DJ & Bar service ends / Guest Begin Departing / Cleanup begins
11:00pm - End of contract time
In the summer we recommend a ceremony time of about 4:30 or 5:30 to ensure the garden is in full shade. In the Fall, we recommend a ceremony time of 4pm to 5pm. This is especially important if you are having a wedding after the time change in November as it gets darker earlier and you will want time for family photos after the ceremony.
What about parking?
Yes, we have over 70 designated parking spots for our guests. A typical wedding of 100 results in about 35 or 40 cars since most guests travel in 2s and 3s.
I'm a caterer. What do I need to know?
Welcome!!! As part of our business model, we welcome all caterers, but in order to keep an open door policy ask you to remember that guests do not understand that you are separate from Windsor Manor.
Guests will assume WM is providing the food, and if there is a problem, it reflects more so on Windsor Manor than it does you.
We ask that you are always friendly and courteous to guests and do your utmost to provide good service. Failure to comply with these rules or any complaints from guests will result in a permanent ban from servicing any future events at Windsor Manor.
All catering staff should have nametags with the name of your business.
All deliveries, pick-ups, setup and breakdown must occur during the client’s rented time from 11am to 11pm the day of the event.
All drinks should be set up outside at the bar or on a table to avoid spills in the house.
It is against fire code to cook or use the oven and we can lose our business license. All food should be cooked before bringing it to the venue and kept warm with sterno/chafing dishes.
Windsor Manor does not provide ice, flatware, napkins, cups, plates, chafing dishes, drink dispensers, etc.
The kitchen and sunroom should look as clean as when you arrived.
All trash/food debris must be contained in appropriate waste bags and removed in a manner that prevents spillage or drips on the way.
________ Microwave has been wiped out
________ Refridgerator shelves if used have been wiped down
________ Kitchen floors have been vacuumed
________ Sink is cleaned
________ Countertops wiped down
________ Any tables used have been wiped down
________ Trash has been removed
________ Sunroom floor has been swept or vacuumed/spills wiped up
________ Kitchen carpets are wiped clean of spills or stains
________ Leftover food has been placed in containers ready for guests to take with them
Do not set anything directly on the kitchen or living room floor. The caterer is responsible for the cost of repairing any damage done to the floors and rugs due to leakage or items being dragged or pushed across the floor. You may use the sunroom to store hot boxes, coolers, etc.
What is your maximum occupancy?
We cater to small intimate weddings of 100 or less. Using the 75% rule you would probably have to invite at least 130 to get this number. In addition to those that don't RSVP, you will also have a few that cancel last minute.
100 is the max capacity that we can seat in the pavilion. When looking at different venues and their capacity, there is sometimes a difference between the number of guests a venue will allow, and the number they can actually seat, so you may want to ask if you don't want a bunch of guests standing around.
A few tips from previous brides:
Have an A list, and then if any of those don't RSVP go to your B list.
If you don't want children at your wedding, include "we have reserved two seats in your honor" on your invitation. It is a polite way to say, "sorry, no kids".
Fridays and Sundays are as popular as Saturdays, and will also cut down on your out of town guests. Friday ceremonies typically start later, and Sunday ceremonies start a bit earlier like 4pm depending on the time of year.
Do you have a layout of the venue?
Best viewed on PC. 2nd Floor dressing rooms not shown. Click here for printable version.
What about decorating?
Most couples do nothing at all. They use our linens (crushed tafetta in ivory), cake stand, centerpieces, chairs, tables, and allow us to set it up for them. We also provide linens for the buffet table and DJ table.
Others might add a table runner in their color, do their own centerpieces, or hire a florist to do centerpieces for the reception tables.
Those who want to go all out will add sheers to the pergola, and maybe shepherd's hooks/bouquets up the aisle.
Just remember however long it takes you to load up what you're planning on bringing, it will take you just as long to pack up. At the end of the day your friends and family are coming to see you, so don't sweat the small stuff!
Fake petals have to be picked up one by one, but you are welcome to use real ones because they can be blown away with a leaf blower. Glitter / conffetti / bird seed (turns into weeds) are not permitted.
Sparkler exits are okay as well as bubbles.
What have we forgotten?
We recommend bringing:
A box for the cake if the baker is not providing one
A cake knife set and a designated person to cut the cake (we have a vintage cake cutting set you can borrow).
Saran wrap / to go boxes for leftovers if your caterer is not providing them
Comfortable shoes for after the ceremony
Someone to help organize your bridal party and line them up if you are not using a coordinator
If you're having alcohol, cash for the officer at the end of the night
A towel if you plan on taking a shower
What does your Venue Attendant do?
During your event, someone will remain on the property and this is included in the rental price.
1. Check trash cans and empty them when necessary.
2. Make sure the bathrooms are in working order.
3. Answer any questions the caterer or DJ have while setting up.
4. Set up and break down tables, chairs, linens.
What is the breakdown process?
There is no addtional cleaning fee so long as there is nothing out of the ordinary.
We ask our clients to make sure all trash both inside and out are in trash cans, and any personal items have been removed. Any leftovers, cake, alcohol, or decorations need to be removed before 11pm. Sometimes the caterers will clear tables during the event for you but that depends on your agreement with them. I would ask someone in the family to help with this process so you can enjoy the night.
The caterer is required to clean up after themselves and remove any of their equipment before 11pm. As we often have several events in a row, leaving equipment is not an option.
We will put away the chairs, linens, and any of our decorations. We will wipe down the tables, vacuum, and mop.
Last call is usually announced at 9:30, last dance at 9:45 and all alcohol must be put away by 10pm for the officer to be able to leave.
What other amenities do you offer?
We have a coffee bar downstairs and a wet bar in the pavilion.
We have a set of cornhole boards that guests can use.
We have 2 mini fridges upstairs and provide complimentary ice and sodas for the bridal party as they're getting ready, with plenty of room for your drinks as well.
We have an optional selfie nook that guests enjoy and a camera you can use. You only need to supply the film. Guests sign the photos for you to put them in a guest book at a later time.
If it's cold, we have 3 tall patio heaters, and if hot several large fans we can bring out.
Our friend is officiating. Do you have a sample script?
~ Introductory Music ~
Officiant: Dearly beloved, we are gathered here on this beautiful day to witness the union of Kevin and Sheila in holy matrimony. This is a day of great celebration and reverence, on which we come together before the Universe to recognize and commemorate the sacred love and dedication shared between these two people.
It is wonderful to have family and friends here to join us today. The Groom and Bride would like to thank their guests for being here, and would like you to know that each of you were invited here on this day because you have played an integral part in their intertwining lives.
Marriage is, truly, a magical gift. As Mark Twain noted, "Marriage makes of two fractional lives a whole, and it gives to two purposeless lives a work [...] it gives to two questioning natures a reason for living, and something to live for; it will give a new gladness to the sunshine, a new fragrance to the flowers, a new beauty to the earth, a new mystery to life."
In the time that Kevin and Sheila have spent together, they've built the sturdy foundation for a lifelong relationship. After a great deal of thoughtful consideration, they have decided to bind themselves to one another for the rest of their lives.
May you all remember and cherish this sacred ceremony, for on this day, with love, we will forever bind Kevin and Sheila together.
Officiant: Who gives this bride today?
Bridal Companion: I do.
Officiant: If there is anyone in attendance who has cause to believe that this couple should not be joined in marriage, you may speak now or forever hold your peace.
Officiant: (Addressing guests) Marriage is a sacred ceremony. Today we observe the union of these two people with the respect the occasion warrants. What we honor with reverence, however, we also celebrate with great joy! For married life – a shared life – is a tremendous blessing.
Now, as Kevin and Sheila embark on this journey together, they will be able to nurture a love that makes each of them better versions of themselves. Marriage is, indeed, the perfect garden from which to sow and harvest personal growth.
(Addressing couple) Kevin and Sheila, learn to work together, to laugh together, and to love together. Don't get caught up in worldly things that will draw you apart. Instead, focus on your shared devotion and turn inward. As your relationship strengthens you will find that you come to share a remarkable love; a love that is both abundantly given and freely accepted.
The joy you'll find as you pursue your shared lives will fuel you to face head-on the challenges you'll encounter on this Earth. On your journeys together, keep your spouse in the space of highest priority in your heart. The love you share must be guarded and cherished, it is your most valuable treasure.
Officiant: I solemnly consecrate these matrimonial proceedings and the sacred covenant you shall both enter into on this day.
Marriage is an ancient rite. As you enter into this union, you are choosing to take part in a historical human establishment and are pledging your commitment before the witnesses present here today to enter into that tradition with honor.
Love, it has been noted, is the reason we live. As Carl Sagan wisely deduced, "The world is so exquisite with so much love and moral depth. We should remain grateful every day for the brief but magnificent opportunity that life provides. The sum of all our evolution, our thinking and our accomplishments is love."
Exchange of Vows
Officiant: Kevin and Sheila, the sacred vows that you make to one another today present you with the opportunity to express your love in your own words. I would at this time invite you to publicly declare these vows:
Kevin, you may begin.
Kevin: I, Kevin, take you, Sheila, for my lawfully wedded Wife, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better or worse, for richer or poorer. I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love you and honor you all the days of my life, until death do us part. This is my solemn vow.
Officiant: Sheila, you may now make your promise.
Sheila: I, Sheila, take you, Kevin, for my lawfully wedded Husband, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better or worse, for richer or poorer. I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love you and honor you all the days of my life, until death do us part. This is my solemn vow.
Declaration of Intent
Officiant: Kevin and Sheila please face one another and join hands. Kevin, do you take Sheila to be your lawfully wedded Wife? By making this commitment, you are joining in the sacred covenant of marriage.
Do you promise to honor her in love, to be sensitive to her needs, to comfort her in difficulty, and to put your full and complete trust in her, so long as you both shall live?
Kevin: I do.
Officiant: Sheila, do you take Kevin to be your lawfully wedded Husband? By making this commitment, you are joining in the covenant of marriage.
Do you promise to honor him in love, to be sensitive to his needs, to comfort him in difficulty, and to put your full and complete trust in him, so long as you both shall live?
Sheila: I do.
Officiant: Very well.
Kevin and Sheila, while the words you have spoken have sealed your union, it is the lighting of the unity candle that truly symbolizes the melding of your two souls.
At this time Kevin and Sheila should each receive a pre-lit taper candle.
You hold in your hands a single flame. Allow this flame to represent your life: every thought that's ever crossed your mind, and every word that's ever crossed your lips; all of your victories, and all of your failures; all of your joys, and all of your sorrows.
And now, tilt these candles forward to light the center candle.
Kevin and Sheila should tilt their candles forward, lighting a larger candle centered between them.
Watch as the two flames instantly form one. So too, today, have your two spirits come together to form one singular entity. Just as your combined flame illuminates the space around it, let your magnificent union radiate with love and light your path as you move forward through life.
Exchange of Rings
Officiant: To commemorate this union, you may now exchange rings. The circle formed by each ring symbolizes your eternal love and commitment to one another. Let these rings remind you always of that love, and of the promises you have made here on this day.
Will each of you please repeat after me as you place the ring on your loved ones hand?
Kevin: I, Kevin, give you Sheila this ring as a symbol of my love and commitment. With this ring, I thee wed.
Sheila: I, Sheila, give you Kevin this ring as a symbol of my love and commitment. With this ring, I thee wed.
Officiant: By the power vested in me by the state of Georiga, I pronounce you, Kevin and Sheila as Husband and Wife, lawfully wedded before the Universe.
Minister: Kevin, you may now kiss the bride, forever sealing your union.
Minister: Ladies and gentlemen, it is my pleasure to present to you Mr. and Mrs. Smith!
~ Exit Music ~
What is a typical processional order?
1. Mother of the Bride
2. Grandparents of the Bride
3. Grandparents of the Groom
4. Bridesmaids & Groomsmen
5. Best Man & Maid and/or Matron of Honor
9. Ring Bearer & Flower Girl (optional)
Are there any vendors you recommend?
We have a list of vendors which includes DJ, caterer, photographers, cake etc. that is included with a signed contract.
Will we need a wedding coordinator?
It depends on what the venue provides, the complexity, and size of your wedding.
Because we cater to smaller weddings and manage the setting up and breaking down the tables, chairs, linens, and centerpieces, it is up to you to decide if you feel you need help with the rest. At the very least you will want someone in charge of lining up the bridal party. It could be a family member or someone in the bridal party.
Coordinators vary in what they offer but their main services include helping to choose vendors, creating a timeline, and organizing the bridal party for the procession.
Is there a designated smoking area?
Not really. We only ask that guests do not smoke inside or near entry doors. If people smoke or don't smoke it's really up to. We have a few metal pails that they can put their cigarette butts in, and you can either place them where you want, or just ask people not to smoke. Your call.
Will we need a bartender?
It's totally up to you and what your vision is.
Most couples bring their own beer and wine and set it up self serve. Cans of beer go in ice chests, wine goes on the bar or on the tables. The caterer will usually provide sweet tea and we often keep that on a separate table.
If you want a full bar with mixed drinks then you will probably want a bartender. If you have guests you are worried about drinking too much then you should probably have a bartender.
An alcohol license is only required if you are selling alchohol.
What forms of payment do you accept?
Cash or check. We also take most cryptocurrencies such as BTC, XRP, LTC etc.
Credit card charges carries a 3.5% charge.
Can we choose our own DJ?
A DJ needs to do more than just spin music - they also need to know how to run a business and that's where many DJs fall short. To ensure excellence, we have partnered with Augusta's best proffessional DJs for you to choose from.
Our list of about ten DJs are all bride recommended and run anywhere from $450 all the way up to $1800 depending on the DJ.
Having house DJs benefits us both since they are already familiar with the venue, setting up, are punctual and organized, dressed appopriately, friendly, and have a proven track record of delivering.
Should we allow children at our wedding?
If you decide to allow children, I recommend getting an experienced sitter that can keep them busy so it doesn't turn into a playground environment. The fact is, people with children want to enjoy the party - not watch the kids.
It is also a good idea to set some ground rules regarding behavior if possible. One thing that will drive guests away (esp those who do not have kids) is children running and screaming for hours on end. The open spaces at Windsor Manor seem to inspire this kind of activity.
If you feel your wedding should be an adult only event here are some tips from previous brides on how to handle it.
We have chosen a small venue with limited occupany and have reserved 2 seats in your honor. Due to the presence of alcohol, all guests must be at least 21 years old.
Children do count towards your guest count because they will want to sit down.
I'm a guest. What do I need to know?
We are an outdoor venue so you will want to dress according to the weather. Our reception pavilion is partially enclosed but not heated or cooled. We provide fans/gas heaters for these areas, but only the manor itself has heating and cooling. We also recommend bringing an umbrella if it is raining and an extra pair of shoes if you are wearing heels as you will be required to wear shoes at all times.
We do not allow pets. Guests may not smoke or vape inside the facility or within 10 feet of any entrance, but they may smoke away from the pavilion so long as the couple that has rented the day doesn't mind.
The venue is very secluded so you will want to use GPS to find it. The most accurate GPS is google. If it tells you "you have arrived" and you don't see anything, look across the road for the 4x8 white sign that says Windsor Manor on the corner of Windsor Spring and Crosscreek Road. We are in the middle of several hundred acres at the end of the dirt road directly behind the sign.
The manor is old and does not have a handicap bathroom. There is a bathroom on the first floor but it is too small for a wheelchair. We plan on adding a bathroom as soon as the funds are available.
If you are bringing children, anyone under 16 must be supervised at all times.
How do I book a wedding?
1) Check our view only calendar to see if we have a date that might work for your wedding. If you click on a date and it says "Busy" that means that date is already booked.
2) Set up a venue visit by using our "VISIT" link. Tours are typically 30 minutes.
3) After your tour, if you like the venue, then we will sit down and sign a contract for the date you want if it's available. We do not save dates without a deposit. Please see our frequently asked question regarding payments and deposits.
How do rehearsals work?
Rehearsals are only on non-event nights and are typically an hour. It's a chance for your bridal party to practice before your big day. We wait about 6 weeks prior to your date to schedule them, so that if the day before is free and more convenient we make that an option. If we have multiple weddings in a weekend which is very common during Spring and Fall, then we split the evening up. Times are typically 4-5, 5-6, or 6-7.
Not all couples have a rehearsal at Windsor Manor. If your bridal party is not in town on Thursday, you may choose to use another location and then go to dinner. Some couples will also do a dry run when they arrive at the venue, or rely on a coordinator or friend to line everyone up and send them out the door.
How do we know we even need a rehearsal? If you have a large bridal party you may want one, if it's a simple ceremony with just the couple you might not.
Any tips? Tell your party to be on time. If someone is late, you will be delayed in starting and there might be a rehearsal after yours. Most weekends in the Spring and Fall are triple booked with weddings on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
How does the processional work?
From the DJ booth the DJ can see both the front door and the pergola where the cermony takes place. From the front door, someone in your party will give the DJ a thumbs up to start the music for the bridal party, who are waiting inside the Manor. The bridal party will begin the processional, and once seated/in position, the DJ will turn the bridal party's song down.
The DJ will then start the song for the bride who will be waiting in the foyer and probably watching the processional. When the bride is in place, he will turn the bride's song down and the officiant will begin.
After the ceremony the DJ will play an exit song and the newly wedded couple and bridal party will exit the ceremony area to the side garden for photos. Guests will be asked to gather at the pavilion for drinks by either the officiant or the DJ.
Does the DJ come? Never
Does our officiant come? Sometimes
How long do we have? An hour on a non event day
Do we need a coordinator? That is really up to you. Some of what Windsor Manor provides and what coordinators provide such as set up and break down overlap. If you have someone in your party that wants to organize everyone that is also an option.
What time are rehearsals? It depends on the time of year, but usually they are from 4-5, 5-6, 6-7, but remember in the late fall it gets dark earlier.
Who will I be working with?
Hi I'm Ian! I am a former computer programmer and elementary school teacher born and raised in Idaho. I moved to Augusta from Atlanta exclusively to restore Windsor Manor, which I purchased in 2014. After about 3 years of work I was ready to have weddings, but the work is ongoing and probably will never stop.
I am an artist and pride myself on having given the manor a very ecletic, youthful, and fun vibe that is unexpected. There are lots of conversation pieces that guests enjoy seeing and tons of places to take photos both inside and out. I feel there is a huge market not only for small weddings, but for couples looking for something more than a predictable barn or sterile conference center.
Since starting in 2017 I'm getting close to over 200 weddings! You'll be hard pressed to find anyone with that much experience. I have several people that will assist me with setup and breakdown, but for the most part I'm the only person you'll deal with directly until the day of the wedding. I think my reviews on Google speak for themselves, but I do work very hard to make sure my couples enjoy their experience.
Thanks for reading!