Event FAQ

Here are a few frequently asked questions that will be useful during your venue selection phase. Feel free to give us a call if your question isn’t answered here!


  • Where do my guests park?
    • Sweetwater has free parking for all guests! We have full access to the Kirby Smith Center across University Avenue, which has a lot with over 150 parking spots. There is also a private parking lot behind the gardens with 35 parking spots.
  • I picked my date, how do I book? What is the deposit?
    • Please call or email us and we can set up a meeting time to talk about your details. Most contracts can also be done through the mail! The deposit amount varies on the day of the week and ranges from $500-$1000. 
  • Can my guests book rooms at Sweetwater’s B&B?
    • Absolutely! One of the many benefits of a Sweetwater wedding and reception are the 20 guest rooms, suites and cottages available on-site. Upon booking, you will receive a promo code that will give your guests a discount on rooms. 
  • Can I bring in my own decorations?
    • Yes! Each wedding reception is unique to your preferences. Our beautiful McKenzie Banquet Hall is surrounded by lush gardens and twinkling string lights, and it boasts a grand high ceiling with trusses to create a neutral but intricate backdrop for your unique style.
  • What about my vendors?
    • Sweetwater provides all venue and catering services, but you are welcome to bring in your own wedding coordinator, photographer, videographer, florist, event designer, cake baker, DJ or band, officiant and alcohol.
  • Can we bring our own catering and alcohol?
    • Sweetwater is famous for great food! For this reason, we provide all catering services and require these services for receptions. You can be confident your menu will be delicious and custom to your wishes. We do allow outside alcoholic beverages to be brought in, and we’ll provide the bar service.
  • Will there be a Sweetwater coordinator on-site the day of the wedding?
    • Yes! An event director will be on-site the day of the wedding to facilitate your reception details and ensure our venue and catering services are exactly the way you imagined. Sweetwater does not coordinate ceremonies and suggests hiring a wedding coordinator for this. Your event director is focused on your reception food and bar details during the ceremony. 
  • I’m on a budget. Can I still have a wedding at Sweetwater?
    • Of course! We are able to accommodate most budgets. We have many budget-friendly options available, including open buffet stations, discounted Friday and Sunday weddings and a smaller venue for weddings up to 65 guests.
  • What about tables, chairs, and linens?
    • Sweetwater provides all of your tables, basic linens and white garden chairs for the ceremony and reception. We have many different table sizes including: 48″ round, 60″ round, 4′ banquet, 6′ banquet, 8′ banquet, bar height and serpentine shapes. Your event director will help you create the perfect floor plan according to your guest count and event details.
  • What happens in the case of inclement weather?
    • We have a great back-up plan. The gorgeous McKenzie Hall becomes the ceremony location with the McKenzie Gardens as the back drop. Your guests then enjoy drinks and hors d’oeuvres on our covered patio while the room is reset.
Please contact our Event Directors, Lauren & Sarah at (352) 373-6760 or email events@sweetwaterinn.com for more information or to schedule a tour of our property. You can also Request a Price Estimate or Schedule a Tour Appointment.

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