Our Barn

The Hayloft • pboynton iPhone

With its old-world grandeur and stunning natural environment, The Skinner Barn is the perfect setting for weddings, theater, educational programs, and social events.

Built in 1891 by the Daniel Skinner family, the structure was originally used as a dairy barn • home to Jersey milking cows. The barn underwent an 8-year renovation process starting in 1992 and since 2000, the barn has housed herds of happy theater goers, students and reception guests!

 

Receptions  and social events at The Skinner Barn flow through all three levels of the structure. The barn's footprint is 88' L X 44' W, giving each floor @4,000 square feet of space, not including the hayloft's high drive ramp. See floor plan.

Though historic barns throughout new england have similar structural elements, the nomenclature can vary widely: in the part of Maine where I grew up, the high drive was called a tractor maw - clearly a more colorful name!

The barn is built into a hillside with the middle level on the front at street level and the bottom level in the back one floor lower. This style of barn is called a bank barn. For most wedding celebrations, your guests will gather by this lower level meadow for initial beverages and socializing before heading to one of three possible outdoor ceremony sites. After the ceremony, your guests will return to the lower barn meadow, weather permitting, for the outside reception part of your day.

The lower level of the barn houses the rest rooms, the downstairs bar, and two ready rooms.  The ready room for the bride and her entourage, aptly named the Brides Room, is directly across from the ladies restroom. The ready room for the groom and his groomsmen is called the Manure Shed reflecting the historical use of the room before it was beautifully renovated!

For couples who want first look photographs, seperate doors to the back of the barn accomodate this request.

Couples and their guests have the use of the barn and property from 8 am to 10 pm on their wedding day. Most couples plan guest arival for @2 pm with a ceremony time of @2:30 pm. In fair weather, the outdoor reception following the ceremony will typically last until @5:30 pm before moving upsatirs to the hayloft for dinner.

The middle level of the barn houses the catering kitchen.

bride's room • birkephoto.com

manure shed • birkephoto.com


Our Grounds

Our 15-acre property sits in one of the lovliest neighborhoods in the Mad River Valley. The Von Trapp Dairy Farm and the Von Trapp Greenhouse are our immediate neighbors just up the hill towards the Waitsfield Common. Locals and visitors alike park their cars at the common to enjoy a walk, run, or bike ride down the length of our gravel Common Road.

The surrounding mountain views of the Northfield Ridge to the east and the ridgeline that hosts the Sugarbush and Mad River Glen ski areas to the west, offer a magnificent vista to our guests. From the top of our high meadow on the farm house side of the property, the view to the north of Camel's Hump is picture postcard perfect!

Our grounds offer three ceremony meadows to choose from:

  • the most popular meadow, the back meadow, is behind the barn and is reached by crossing the bridge over the lovely Clay Brook. This meadow offers views of the western ridgeline with a beuatiful pond as a backdrop.
  • exiting the lower level barn door, you open onto the lower meadow . This meadow offers the easiest accessibility for your guests and is closest to the protection and cover of the barn should threatening weather appear.
  • the high meadow is the most adventurous. It lays on the farmhouse side of the property and offers a modest hike to the south east corner of the field. From this vantage point, Camel's Hump and the mountains to the northwest offer an amzaing view!