Olde Mill Inn | Creative Themes & Menus

Olde Mill Inn, Courtyard Embrace (Gary Flom Photography)

Your Venue Search. First ... Get The Facts!
1. What are the Maximum & Minimum Number of Guests?
2. Can you Customize Your Menu to your taste and budget?
3. Does their menu include an Open Bar? Signature Drinks?
4. Does the venue offer On-Site Amenities, such as a restaurant, an after-party space, overnight accommodations, and a day-after breakfast?
5. Can the Bridal Suite & the Groom’s Suite accommodate the needs of the bridal party prior to the wedding?
6. If the hotel is onsite, how many Guest Rooms are in a block for the wedding night and the night before?
7. What is the Time Frame for the wedding?
8.  What are All The Venue Fees for the wedding?
9. How does Pricing Vary by month and day?
10. Who is your Point of Contact leading up to the wedding and the day of?
11. How much Set-Up will the staff do on the wedding day?
12. When can your Vendors Arrive for their set-up?

Olde Mill Inn & Grain House, 225 Route 202, Basking Ridge, NJ 07920
908.696.2315, www.oldemillinn.com/weddings

Celebrate Your Wedding with … Creative Themes & Menus

Guided By Your Personalities

We enjoy when a couple adds personal touches to their wedding that really express who they are,” says Lindsay  Stewart, sales director and previously maître d’ at Olde Mill Inn. “We offer signature drinks where the couple can create a cocktail and give it a name. We also encourage our brides and grooms to bring items for us to set up with their décor, such as picture frames with generations of family weddings or framed engagement photos.”

The music for your wedding should also represent your style as a couple. “For example, have a bagpiper greet guests and play for the ceremony, have steel drummers play for your cocktail hour during a summer wedding, or have a live duo with acoustic guitar for a rustic country wedding.

“The style of your reception and your menu can also represent your personalities. If you’re looking to have a non-traditional wedding, for example, options such as a cocktail-style wedding or a summer BBQ buffet may be just what you want.”

“For example, many brides I’ve worked with have chosen elaborate cupcake displays in place of traditional wedding cakes or even a donut tower built with their favorite donuts. Inventive signature cocktails, cake toppers, and hashtags are also fun elements that can have special meaning for you. A wedding should reflect the two of you and your personalities, no matter how far from traditional you may stray.”

Amanda Virga, sales manager and previously a maître d’, agrees. “So many couples are straying from standard wedding styles to incorporate unique aspects highlighting their particular interests. As coordinators, we embrace this creativity and love to accommodate special requests to create the celebration of their dreams.

“For example, many brides I’ve worked with have chosen elaborate cupcake displays in place of traditional wedding cakes or even a donut tower built with their favorite donuts. Inventive signature cocktails, cake toppers, and hashtags are also fun elements that can have special meaning for you. A wedding should reflect the two of you and your personalities, no matter how far from traditional you may stray.”

Olde Mill Inn (Gary Flom Photography)

Olde Mill Inn, Outdoor Ceremony Space (Photo: Marien Barker)

Your Décor

“We have two venues,” says Marien Barker, sales manager and maître d’, “and each has its own personality. Our smaller Grain House, which is adjacent to the Olde Mill Inn, is more rustic and can accept more casual décor. Our Washington Ballroom has an understated elegance. It can be rustic as well, but it also can be glitzy. In both venues, almost any décor can work.

“At one of our recent weddings, the groom was a fireman. For their wedding, on each of our decorative tables around the ballroom, we displayed fireman boots with flowers inside. They were actually the boots of retired firemen from their town.”

 “For weddings at the Olde Mill Inn,” adds Lindsay, “like with many other venues, table arrangements that have the same flowers but vary in height or differ slightly in design look especially nice. They create an ambiance that has some variation and yet is similar in every direction the guest looks.  Also, more candles always set the perfect mood!”

Lindsay agrees with Marien that the Grain House is a perfect venue for rustic décor. “Lanterns, plus mason jars, candles, branches, and wooden tree stumps will add to that  historic and rustic, yet elegant, wedding space.”

Rustic DIY décor has been a huge trend in recent years, and Amanda feels that both the Olde Mill Inn and Grain House, each with their own rich history and rustic character, mesh perfectly with this style of décor. “Our outdoor grounds and warm intimate spaces provide the perfect setting for a rustic wonderland wedding with touches of burlap, wood slabs, mason jars, and babies breath.

“Lawn games are also popular with this chic country style and its more casual atmosphere. Other little details, like incorporating significant locations or dates into table numbers and unique favors, or a donation in lieu of favors, are all great ways to highlight specific interests and personalities.”

Olde Mill Inn, Washington Ballroom (Maggie McGill Photography)

Olde Mill Inn, Cupcake Treats (Photo: Amanda Virga)


“For traditional  Jewish ceremonies,” says Lindsay, “your florist can set up a beautiful chuppah in our courtyard or at the riverside gazebo. Also, a recent Indian wedding at the Olde Mill Inn had an elaborate Mandap (ceremony structure), which was draped with thousands of flowers, colorful fabric, an outdoor chandelier, and a red carpet. The groom entered the property in an antique car, and was greeted by their guests with live music, loud drumming, and dancing.”
“Everyone has their own traditions, and it’s very important to include them throughout the wedding,” adds Amanda. “Many cultural traditions have a big influence on the formalities of the reception, like, for example, the Greek Money Dance – one of my all-time favorite traditions! The excitement with money being thrown up in the air all over the dance floor gets the party started with some great energy!

“Just when I think I’ve seen it all,” she continues, “I come across new traditions I never knew about. For instance, a Dutch couple I recently worked with needed a wedding cake made from blocks of cheese, which is the traditional wedding cake in the Netherlands.”

Grain Hosue Gazebo (Brad Ross Photography)

Olde Mill Inn, Greek Money Dance (Photo: Amanda Virga)

Special Services

Marien tells us that wedding couples at each of their venues have access to sleeping rooms and a special bridal lounge to start your day with hair and make-up. “We also have an after-hours pub, as well the option to have a private after-party in their own space.”

The Olde Mill Inn has 102 guests rooms and their  ballroom can accommodate up to 240 guests. The ballroom has French doors that open up to a stone courtyard and gardens. “The courtyard is beautiful for outdoor ceremonies and cocktail hours.”

The historic Grain House can accommodate up to 120 guests. There is a riverside gazebo and a tented patio for outside ceremonies, cocktail hours, or outdoor dancing. “The fireplaces at the Grain House also set the perfect ambiance for winter weddings,” says Lindsay. “The Grain House Coppertop Pub is also open late for after-parties.”

All Olde Mill Inn and Grain House wedding couples have a coordinator working with them throughout the entire process and an on-site maître d’ the day of. Two months prior to the wedding, the maître d’ reviews all the set-up logistics, the menu selections, day-of details, and the ceremony. “The maître d’ helps bring the couple’s vision to fruition,” says Lindsay, “to make sure all the details fall into place, so both of you can enjoy your guests and your delicious food and drinks!”

Most Memorable Weddings

“At one wedding this past summer,” says Marien, “we released butterflies after the ceremony. It was awesome. Another recent wedding had a Moscow Mule Bar with lovely copper mugs for each guest.”

But her most memorable wedding was one she will never forget. “Twenty minutes before their ceremony, the bride and groom received a call from their officiant who said he couldn’t make it to the wedding!” Luckily, Marien had been ordained as a ceremony officiant just the week before. “The bride asked me to step up and marry them. She had their ceremony vows on her phone. We printed out the options and cut and pasted all the things she wanted me to say.

“I wasn’t sure how I would lead the bridal processional to start their ceremony, as well as stand up in front of the guests to do their vows. Of course, the Olde Mill Inn staff was there to back me up. Never having done a ceremony before, I stood in front of 190 guests and let them know I was just a stand-in! With pink clipboard in hand and the notes from the bride and groom, I officiated.” She received a standing ovation and then returned to her job as maître d’ for the rest of the night.

Lindsay recalls a recent wedding when the bride and groom brought their dog to the Olde Mill Inn for photos and to serve as ring bearer for the ceremony. “It was such a nice way to have their pet as part of the wedding.”

Amanda was coordinating a recent wedding where the bride walked down the aisle to the Song “99 Red Balloons.” “Yes I put 99 red balloons down the aisle for her to walk through! It was a crazy idea, but I was thrilled for a new challenge! I also had quite a few weddings recently with some really amazing décor. The one that stands out the most had tea lights suspended from the ceiling above the guest tables.”

Olde Mill Inn, Moscow Mule Copper Mugs (Photo: Marien Barker)

Olde Mill Inn, His & Her Signature Drinks (Photo: Marien Barker)

A Rich History

The property has a rich centuries-old history. In 1768, Samuel Lewis built a water-powered gristmill and a barn on the Passaic River on land he acquired from William Penn. His grandson bought the property in 1777. Along a major thoroughfare between New York and Philadelphia, it was well located for commerce and also for the Revolutionary War. Legend says that the Grain House barn was used to store the grain that fed George Washington’s Revolutionary Army during the winter of 1770–1780 at their nearby encampment in Jockey Hollow, Morristown.

After passing through several hands, restaurateur William Childs bought the entire property in 1929. He moved the barn to the other side of Route 202 and began converting it to a hotel, preserving the spirit of the classic structure. Not a beam was touched in the barn’s solid frame, and the Grain House remains to this day as it was more than two centuries ago.

“Today, the Bocina Group maintains the Olde Mill Inn’s tradition of affordable elegance and the Grain House also continues to be a local favorite,” says Lindsay.

Dreaming of Weddings ... Marien was a chef and catering business owner for 20 years prior to working as a wedding planner at the Olde Mill Inn. “For me, the most exciting part about organizing a wedding is how things look and coordinating the details for each wedding. I love to give the brides and grooms ideas about table top, placecard table décor, and other special touches that make their wedding unique, such as displaying wedding photos of their parents or grandparents.”

Lindsay always dreamed of being an event planner. “I started at the Olde Mill Inn 10 years ago as our conference service manager. Then I had this incredible opportunity to become a banquet manager and a wedding maître d’.

“The best part about organizing a wedding is working with a couple to see their vision come to life. I love that we can customize each wedding. We host intimate weddings for 25 people to large weddings of over 200 guests and I enjoy creating a wonderful memory for each bride and groom, their family, and friends.”

 Amanda started working as an assistant for a wedding and event planner. “Now I have found my home at the Olde Mill Inn, where I have personally coordinated over 300 weddings since joining the team in 2013!

“The most inspiring part of planning a wedding for me is handing all the often unpredictable moments that can pop up the day of the wedding. No matter how many times you think you have covered all the details, countless dilemmas can arise the day of: a bride’s dress ripping, lost groomsmen ties, a DJ not showing up for the ceremony, a florist forgetting to put fresh flowers on the cake, even rings being left behind in a hotel room!

“For me, it is most rewarding to be the calming force, thinking quickly to solve the problem, even if it means becoming a seamstress, DJ, or florist for a few moments in the day, to ultimately providing the couple with the wedding of their dreams. That makes all the hard work that goes into planning a wedding completely worth it!”

Olde Mill Inn & Grain House, 225 Route 202, Basking Ridge, NJ 07920
908.696.2315, www.oldemillinn.com/weddings