The Hoyt Arboretum Redwood Deck is a wedding venue and a little oasis tucked away in the west hills of Portland. It’s walking distance to downtown Portland, however, you feel like you are a million miles away from the city. The deck looks out over a beautiful forest scene, which makes the most beautiful backdrop for any wedding.
I first met Kelli and Casey in person when they pulled up to the parking lot in their big red van. They finished up getting ready in the van and the three of us headed down to the ceremony spot to hide away before their guests began to arrive.
I couldn’t have asked for a better September afternoon to shoot at the Redwood Deck. It was sunny and warm, but the canopy of Redwood trees kept all of us cool as the two exchange vows.
After the ceremony we took a few portraits on the trails at Hoyt Arboretum before heading off across town to Xico for the reception. Xico is a beautifully and cozy space that was perfect for Kelli and Casey’s group. We drank modelos and margaritas while we listened to the toasts and soaked up the low key atmosphere.
How to Plan a Wedding at the Hoyt Arboretum Redwood Deck
Enter the Redwood Deck Wedding Lottery
That’s right! It’s no surprise that this lovely spot gets booked up quick, and to give everyone an equal chance there is a lottery for all Saturday weddings and events.
Know the Wedding Rules and Regulations
Hoyt Arboretum is a delicate habitat that is cared for meticulously by Oregon Public Parks. There are several restrictions regarding music, confetti, alcohol, etc. Be sure to check all of the event regulations to make sure your wedding will be in compliance.
Get Married on a Weekday
If possible, plan for a weekday wedding. Not only will you have a better chance of securing a reservation, but the park will be much less crowded in general. A reservation for the Redwood Deck is just for the Deck itself. Patrons of the arboretum still have access to the surrounding trails. So if you don’t want the distraction of huge groups of onlookers, weekdays are your best bet.
Brings Snacks and Drinks!
I’ve photographed several weddings at the Redwood Deck and in my experience, guests tend to arrive very early. My guess is that they just want to soak in the atmosphere. With a reservation you are allowed to serve alchol and set up small tables for snacks. So why not!
How to Get to the Hoyt Arboretum Redwood Deck
The Redwood deck is located in Portland’s west hills, about a 10 minute drive from downtown Portland. Take Burnside street out of the city until you get to the stoplight at Tichner Dr. Take a left and follow the signs to Hoyt Arboretum. There is paid parking and a few free parking spots at the visitor center. Follow the signs down a few winding trails where you’ll find the Redwood Deck!
Hoyt Arboretum Visitor Center
4000 SW Fairview Blvd
Portland, OR 97221
Hoyt Arboretum Redwood Deck
Portland, OR 97205
If you’re searching for the perfect place to get married, check out my Portland Wedding Venue Guide for more great places to tie the knot!
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If you’re looking for a wedding photographer and you connect with my work, I would love to hear from you!