Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m Stephanie, a wedding photographer and educator based in Columbus, Ohio! I love sharing all of my recent shoots as well as wedding planning advice, tips and tricks for photographers, my handsome hubby, my fluffy puppy, and some of the behind the scenes of my business. I'm SO glad you're here! Thanks for stopping by, and feel free to take a look around!
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The Darby House in Galloway, Ohio, is a beautiful farm wedding venue with rich history and lot of legacy. I had the absolute pleasure of sitting down with Jessie Pollitt, Event Sales Manager for the Darby House, and Mike Redcay, the Director of Operations for Cameron Mitchell Premier Events to chat about this absolutely incredible venue in the greater Columbus area. Located in Galloway, Ohio (a mere 18 minutes from downtown Columbus) it has been one of my favorite venues to photograph weddings at. Not only is it beautiful for the exceptional waterside scenery, but what makes it especially unique is the people who work there. As with Cameron Mitchell as a whole, their number one goal is to extend genuine hospitality to all who come there for events. It truly shows and has made them one of the best venues to work with on wedding days. Jessie and Mike gave me incredible information about the venue, it’s history, and what it has to offer for couples, which I am so excited to share all about with you today!
The Darby House venue in Galloway is owned by the Galbreath family, which has been a very influential philanthropic family in Columbus for around one hundred years. Originally it was a 110 acre farm, with John Galbreath expanding the property to over 4,000 acres in the 1940s to begin breeding horses. Many of them went on to race and win the Kentucky derby. He also happened to own the Pittsburgh Pirate’s baseball team. This made him the only sports owner to win a championship in two different sports: horse racing and baseball. The Galbreath family has kept the legacy going with Darby Dan Farms (named after Darby Creek and Dan, his son’s name). In 1954, The Darby House was built specifically to entertain guests, which makes the venue unique in itself. It was made specifically for hosting and events. It was used a space to entertain people for movies, dinners, watching baseball or horse races, and more.
Although it’s been hosting events since the 1950s when it was originally built, it became open to the public in the early 2000s. In 2009, the family came in contact with Cameron Mitchell Premier Events, who partnered with the Galbreaths to become stewards of the venue. From that point forward, Cameron Mitchell became responsible for all of the events hosted and in running all of these events, of which the majority are weddings (and other events, such as corporate retreats, as well).
The venue offers three distinct spaces: the dining room, the trophy (or racing) room, and the patio. The dining room is ideal for receptions, the trophy room is wonderful for cocktail hour with the bar located in the room, and the patio is known for it’s beautiful outdoor ceremonies. These three areas of the venue are typically used in this way, however, you can always switch it around as needed. The trophy room provides the perfect Plan B for a rainy wedding day, when an outdoor ceremony isn’t ideal. With windows acting as two walls of the room, it creates an atmosphere of feeling like you’re in the beautiful outdoors, when you’re actually inside. The venue is waterside, with beautiful stone and the beauty of nature providing most of your decor. It holds up to 250 guests for weddings in all of these spaces, and hosts an average of 80 events every year. Although their peak season is April through November, events happen all year round. The options available simply make it an ideal location for events in the wintertime!
Even with the beautiful features the venue has to offer, the best part about it is the people who serve you there. Their mission is to provide genuine hospitality and to give you the experience you want. They are there to execute your vision as you want it. Working with them as a photographer on wedding days, this amazing attitude of service, care, and hospitality shows in so many ways. They are truly there to help come to life what is important to you on your wedding day. They are in the wedding business to run a venue and serve their couples, with no other mission or goal in mind. It is a space that was made for hosting, and the staff carries their mission gracefully and wonderfully. They truly go above and beyond to ensure what you communicate as important happens on your wedding day.
Coming from a place of hospitality, they are there to let you invest in the areas of your wedding that mean the most to you. Since they provide your venue, catering, bar, and other service upgrades, they only require one minimum for you to meet for your day. That way, you have the freedom to invest in the area that means the most to you and your day, whether that’s the food, the length of time you have your venue, the bar, or any rental upgrades or services you value. The initial rental includes 6 hours of time, plus 2 hours before your rental time starts to arrive at the property to get ready and for photos beforehand. In that rental, you’re also provided the basic things you need for your day to go smoothly, including a day-of coordinator, tables, linens, china and flatware, the getting ready suite, and a ceremony rehearsal on site before your wedding. The day-of coordinator, Jessie, also takes on other roles as well before your big day. She chats with you about your vision for your day at your initial venue tour and stays in touch throughout the entire planning process. The day-of your wedding, the staff plays a huge role in coordination, from taking things off your vendors’ plates and assisting them to setting up your reception decor. They’re people you can trust to do it well, and since they’ve played such a big role in your planning process from the start, you can let go and let them do it seamlessly.
When asked what is the best thing a couple can do to make their wedding day go smoothly, Jessie and Mike were both in agreement that communication is key. Having a vision from the start and making decisions based on that vision goes a long way in making your wedding run smoothly. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or to express your vision to vendors. Say what you would love to have happen, then you can get an idea of what can be done and what can be prioritized. Share what are the most important things for your day. The photography, the music, the location, the food, whatever is the most important thing to you for your wedding, communicating that is key. It’s your vision they’re helping to bring to life, so knowing what is important to you will allow them to prioritize those things on your wedding day, in the way they help you plan and execute your day.
Their mission is to create raving fans that come back over and over again. Their couples truly become a part of the story of the farm. Many of their past couple love to come back to take their anniversary or family photos on the property because they become a part of their legacy. The Darby House is truly one of the best of the best for venues in the Columbus, Ohio area, and I have been absolutely honored to work with them. Their mission in what they do and their legacy is evident, and they are truly an amazing team to work with in serving couples on their wedding days.
Driving up to the venue, nestled back at the end of the long driveway. I went out to visit in February, which is why everything doesn’t look as green! Keep scrolling to see it’s full beauty! :)
The front doors upon arriving:
A little peak into the bridal suite!
With my past bride, Fan, we took her on the back patio for her getting ready portraits. They were simply gorgeous!!
Here is the patio where ceremonies typically take place, photographed at the beginning of October! It is simply stunning with all the greenery and the waterside location.
Below is the Trophy (Racing) Room, perfect for Cocktail hour or indoor ceremonies (the wall behind me is also windows, making it feel like you’re outside when you’re really not!)
Below is the Dining Room, where receptions are typically held! What a beautiful space with so many options. Keep scrolling to see past reception setups!
Here are a plethora of details, portraits, and other fun shots, so you can see more of the possibilities! :)
Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m Stephanie, a wedding photographer and educator based in Columbus, Ohio. I love sharing all of my recent shoots as well as wedding planning advice, tips and tricks for photographers, my handsome hubby, and some of the behind the scenes of my business. Thanks for stopping by, and feel free to take a look around!
join the sk tribe