If you’re daydreaming about saying “I do,” there may be visions of flower fields and sundresses dancing in your head — but don’t be too quick to dismiss the notion of a winter wedding. From postcard-worthy wintry backdrops to the plethora of countryside pastimes for your guests to enjoy, let these five offseason arguments warm you up to the idea of winter weddings in Connecticut.
1. They’re Really, Really Romantic
First thing’s first: it doesn’t get much more romantic than tying the knot surrounded by a sparkling winter wonderland. Take the stark beauty of a wintry lakefront and add some freshly-fallen snow, and you have yourself some very dramatic and breathtaking photo ops. Cross your fingers (and your toes) for some gentle snowfall in time for the big day!
2. A Winter Wedding + A Countryside Inn = A Perfect Match
The Litchfield Hills always look like they were pulled straight out of a storybook, but there’s something especially magical about them in the wintertime. When a blanket of snow rests atop those rustic cottages and townhouses, more hearts will be set aflutter than just the bride and groom’s. From gazing at the scenes outside to bundling up by a crackling fireplace indoors, it doesn’t take much to fall in love with the wintry Connecticut countryside.
3. There’s Plenty For Your Guests To Do (Perhaps Too Much)
Outside of being a superb spot for a winter wedding venue, there’s a lot to love about Lakeville activities in the winter. Save some room in your winter wedding itinerary for a group ski outing at Mohawk Mountain (just 20 minutes from our doors), or stay on solid footing with some snowshoeing on the Harlem Valley Rail Trail. In the evening, keep cozy by seeing a show at one of three intimate cinemas within The Movie House or by stopping by Infinity Music Hall for a live performance.
4. Less Expensive, More Available
We all like to save a dime here and there, so it merits mention: winter weddings are notably less expensive than their peak season counterparts, and there’s far less competition for finding a fitting day. With that extra wiggle room in your wallet, you’ll be able to invest more in other areas, like overnight accommodations and a professional photographer — contact our wedding team for our top recommendations (which are twice as likely to have availability in the winter).
When the crisp autumn air starts to blow, we bust out more than just the cozy sweaters in the Litchfield Hills. A talented team of chefs, led by Executive Chef John Welch, modify the menu at our Morgan’s Restaurant to feature the fresh flavors of fall. From earthy root vegetables to tangy sauces, it’s easy to see why fall makes a foodie’s heart throb. Here are some of the autumn tastes you can savor with a visit to our restaurant in Connecticut.
1. New England Clam Chowder
Just because we’re not situated by the sea doesn’t mean we can’t pull off an authentic clam chowder. Chef Welch is a native Mainer himself, and no stranger to the New England staple. The fall-winter menu at Morgan’s features a chowder with a northwestern Connecticut twist, incorporating Applewood bacon, new potatoes, and fresh thyme from our backyard garden — it’s just the right way to kick-off off a dinner full of farm-to-table fare.
2. Marinated Grilled Vegetables
When in Rome, you do as the Romans do; when at a farm-to-table restaurant in Connecticut, you dig into delectable fall veggies. Our selection of off-the-grill ingredients includes local squash, carrots, onions, and earthy potatoes, all of which are sourced from our list of nearly two dozen local farm partners.
3. Stir Fry
A newer dish at Morgan’s (but an instant classic), our stir fry is comprised of sesame, soy, coconut rice, and of course, an eclectic mix of vegetables fresh off the farm. You can even cast your own star of the plate — protein it up with skirt steak or turf chicken from our neighbors at Q Farms over in Sharon, satisfy your seafood cravings with Pearl Island shrimp or diver sea scallops, or just keep it green with an all-veggie entree.
4. House Mash
What’s an autumn farm-to-table dinner without sinking your fork into some spuds? Along with the rest of our ingredients, we source our potatoes from farm partners throughout the Litchfield Hills, fitting for our homestyle house seasoning with fresh garden herbs. You won’t go wrong electing to order our house mash as a side to any main course, but popular pairings include Q Farms cut of the day and diver sea scallops.
If you’re like us, it only takes a two-second drive past a cornfield and those childhood memories come flooding back. Racing through a rustling corn maze is a favorite fall activity in New England, and whether your family is seasoned in conquering corny corridors or you’re scouting for your first one, let loose at one of these corn mazes in northwestern Connecticut (or a close neighbor).
1. Ellsworth Hill Orchard & Berry Farm (Sharon, CT)
Located right next door in Sharon, the corn maze at Ellsworth Hill Orchard & Berry Farm is the closest to us here at Interlaken. Keep your eyes on the prize — you’ll still catch glimpses of those legendary Litchfield Hills at some angles while you’re searching for the right turn. After you’ve mastered the maze, keep the family fun chuggin’ along on a hayride tour of the enormous pick-your-own apple orchard and berry farm, and head back to the farmhouse for a celebratory snack of cider donuts and fresh-pressed cider from the mill.
2. Bunnell Farm (Litchfield, CT)
Bunnell Farm over in Litchfield touts a tricky, custom-made corn maze fit for all ages. Each October, Bunnell embraces the spooky spirit by inviting you to stop by after sundown and find your way out of a flashlight maze. You won’t see anything seriously scary beyond the dark of the night, so it’s suitable for even the youngest maze-solvers. Head to the farm on the weekend and you’ll also get to hop on a free hayride to a pick-your-own pumpkin patch.
3. Kesicke Farm (Rhinebeck, NY)
Alright, so we’re bending the rules a bit... but Kesicke Farm, just across the New York border in Rhinebeck, deserves a spot right next to our favorite Connecticut corn mazes. If you’re thinking of taking any tots to the Litchfield Hills, Kesicke is for you. Kids who aren’t quite big enough to meet the challenge of a corn maze can take a wagon ride through the passageways. It’s also the only farm around to feature a barn full of lively farm animals, so it’s well worth a trip across the New York/Connecticut border to add some goat-feeding and pig-petting to your itinerary.
4. Hayes Corn Maze (North Granby, CT)
It’s a little further afield, but Hayes Corn Maze over in North Granby is well worth the detour if you’re on the hunt for a larger labyrinth. Tackle the maze in one of two ways: a standard puzzle of running from point A to point B, or by taking on the “Maze Master” Challenge, where teams seek out six stations hidden within the maze, each with its own puzzle to solve. Don’t expect a cookie-cutter maze, either — each year, the maze-makers push the creative bar higher by carving a distinct design into their fields. In 2017, their maze resembled a slice of Domino’s Pizza.
Racing through corn-husk havens is a sure-fire way to get your fix of family fun, but there are far more fall attractions waiting in the Litchfield Hills. Solve all of these northwestern Connecticut corn mazes and dive into more countryside attractions during a stay here at Interlaken Inn — we’re easier to find than the other end of a corn maze, promise.
Not to brag or anything, but when it comes to farm-to-table restaurants, we have it made here in the Litchfield Hills. With a variety of veggies growing (literally) in our backyard, we’re spoiled rotten with fresh food and delicious delicacies. Head over to these farm-to-table restaurants in Connecticut for a taste of the Litchfield Hills at its freshest.
1. Morgan’s Restaurant
You don’t have to stray too far for a farm-fresh bite here at Interlaken — in fact, you don’t have to stray at all. Our very own Morgan’s Restaurant, attached to our Main Building, serves as a standalone farm-to-table eatery here in the Litchfield Hills. We source all of our produce directly from our backyard kitchen garden, and with an award-winning menu that sees grass-fed beef to house-made vegetable spring rolls, Morgan’s has been considered a Lakeville legend in locally-sourced dishes for over a decade (and counting!).
2. Mockingbird Restaurant
If your stay in the Litchfield Hills is set to last a few extra nights, extend your foodie tour to the Mockingbird in Bantam. Mockingbird prides itself in its ingredients fresh off the farm — some popular plates include its Blue Moon Farms Grass-Fed Beef Burger and the Truffle Zucchini “Pasta”. Coordinate your visit to catch an event at Sam’s Social Club within the restaurant — there’s live acoustic music every Sunday night and even the occasional vino-focused dinner functions, like the Southern Hemisphere Wine Series.
3. Marketplace Kitchen & Bar
If you’re going to be out and about during your getaway to the Litchfield Hills, consider stopping at the Marketplace Kitchen & Bar in Woodbury, less than an hour south of Interlaken. With charming patio seating during the warm months and a crackling fireplace to keep you cozy in the winter, the Marketplace and its locally-sourced menu is well worth the drive.
4. Vendors At The Millerton Farmer’s Market
Alright, so it’s not quite Connecticut, but the Millerton Farmer’s Market right over the border is just the spot to nab the freshest heirloom apples and garden greens during your countryside retreat. Shop nearly 20 local vendors and grab a bite to-go — fan favorites include artisanal cheeses from Chaseholm Farm Creamery and fresh-baked scones from Coco’s Crumbs. The outdoor market runs May through October at the Millerton Methodist Church, less than 10 minutes from Lakeville.
The local food movement is something we take seriously here at Interlaken — we helped get it off the ground in our neck of the woods, and now, our Morgan's Restaurant is a proud member of Berkshire Grown, Slow Food USA, and the Connecticut Farmland Trust. Stay in the loop on our local Lakeville dining with updates from our Chef’s Corner, and make reservations to kick off your farm-fresh foodie tour in Connecticut.
All it takes is the teensiest, tiniest tint of orange in the treetops and we get fanatical about fall here in the Litchfield Hills. If you feel the same way, then you’re in luck — there’s no shortage of gatherings in our neck of the woods dedicated to apple crisps, hayrides, and other fall-focused festivities. Get a whiff of pumpkin spice-scented everything and celebrate the season at these fall festivals in Connecticut.
1. Salisbury Fall Festival
For 62 years and counting, the Salisbury Fall Festival has been bringing a surplus of fall spirit straight to our backyard. The apple-munching, pumpkin-picking festivities take place on Columbus Day weekend, including a crowd favorite in the annual Scarecrow Contest, which draws in dozens of straw-stuffed creatures all the way up Main Street.
Who are we to miss out on the action? Each year, we open the doors to our very own Morgan’s Restaurant to give everyone a taste of fall comfort food at its finest — our homemade Q Farms Chicken Pot Pie.
2. Goshen Fair (Goshen, CT)
Why wait for the September equinox when you can leap into the fall fun on Labor Day Weekend? With professional truck pulls, monster trucks, fireworks, and more, the annual Goshen Fair is the spot to see summer off with a bang in the Litchfield Hills. At the Goshen Antique Barn, catch some clowning-around at the circus show and pick from a patch of giant pumpkins.
3. Kent Fall Festival (Kent, CT)
Located on the Connecticut Antique Machinery Association museum grounds, the Kent Fall Festival features a showcase of antiquated tractors, plows, and cultivators you have to see to believe. After standing in on a sawmill demonstration, jump-start your holiday shopping with wooden handiwork and artisan crafts from dozens of local vendors.
4. Miranda Vineyard Harvest Festival (Goshen, CT)
If you’re a wine connoisseur, make the annual Miranda Vineyard Harvest Festival your go-to fall festival in Connecticut. Goshen kicks off grape harvest season with vino tastings, live music and dance performances, and a pizza food truck. Dive feet-first into the festival’s ever-popular grape stomp if you want to taste the fruits of your own labor!
Here in the Litchfield Hills, fall festivals are as plentiful as pumpkin patches and apple orchards. Before you dive into the fresh flavors and stunning sights of fall in Connecticut, make a reservation here at Interlaken Inn — we’ll be your go-to guides on all the autumnal attractions in the Lakeville area.
Fall is a fan favorite season for the big day — and for good reason. Sensational farm-fresh flavors, cozy sweater weather, and breathtaking colors inspire many couples to throw a fall wedding in Connecticut. Use these seven planning tips to see to it that you, your betrothed, and every one of your guests fall in love with Connecticut on your special day.
1. Plan a Harvest-Happy Menu
Find inspiration in Thanksgiving palate-pleasers and put together a menu full of fall fare fixin’s like turkey, mashed potatoes, and corn. Our very own Morgan’s Restaurant also serves up a superb specialty pumpkin and roasted chestnut soup, along with fresh root vegetables, roasted chicken, and braised local short ribs. Don’t forget to top it off with some pumpkin pie or caramel-dipped apples!
2. Have Apple Cider At The Ready
Nothing hits the spot and warms the soul on a brisk fall day like some hot apple cider. When your guests walk up to your venue and see some white steam rising from everyone’s mugs, you can count on seeing smiles within seconds.
3. Decorate For Fall, But Don’t Overdo It
Autumn wildflowers as centerpieces, pine cones as place markers, cakes adorned with dahlias… the ways to spice up your space are as plentiful as a Thanksgiving harvest. Don’t get too carried away, however — by mid-to-late October, nature will have already done most of the decorating for your fall wedding in Connecticut.
4. Keep Guests (And Yourselves) Nice and Warm
Let’s face it: fall weather can be pretty unpredictable. If you’re worried about your guests being too chilly to celebrate, take a tip or two from our favorite ways to keep warm at Interlaken. Convene in a rustic, spacious, and (of course) heated indoor gathering space, gather ’round a beautiful lakeside bonfire, and retire to a cozy countryside cabin at night.
5. Stock Up On Seasonal Stationery
Why whip out plain white note cards during a season saturated with colors and spices? Apple or leaf-shaped invitations and seating cards will direct people to the right spot while stirring some excitement and giving your guests a taste of your fall fondness.
Think Connecticut can’t compete in the big leagues of leaf peeping? Don’t be so sure. Once mid-October rolls around, the Litchfield Hills burst with vibrant reds and oranges that (dare we say it) rival those of our neighbors to the north. Revel in the best of Connecticut fall foliage on this scenic byway full of popular leaf peeping pit stops near Lakeville.
Stop #1: Cobble Mountain Trail Overlook (Kent, CT)
Head south from Lakeville on the leisurely Route 41, a scenic state highway of pastoral landscapes and saltbox farmhouses. After a 30 minute drive, you’ll arrive at Macedonia Brook State Park in Kent. Grab a trail map at the front office and take to the white blazed Cobble Mountain Trail — the overlook offers a magnificent view across the Harlem Valley to the distant Catskills. It’s a spectacular sight year-round, but at the height of foliage season, those incredible colors are in a league of their own.
Stop #2: Bulls Covered Bridge (South Kent, CT)
Once you’ve had your foliage fix at the Cobble Mountain overlook, take a short detour to the Bull’s Bridge, which crosses the Housatonic River. The sight of this charming, classic New England covered bridge surrounded by oranges and browns is the thing of autumnal postcards. This also makes a great opportunity to set up a scenic fall picnic or venture into downtown Kent for a bite to eat.
Stop #5: Interlaken Inn (Lakeville, CT)
After another 20 miles or so of rolling hills and winding stone walls, you’ll be back in the quiet comfort of Lakeville. While we have plenty of places to peep leaves in the Litchfield Hills, at Interlaken Inn can you pull up an Adirondack chair and take in the views from your porch — all while scrolling through snapshots from your fall foliage tour in Connecticut.