Southern hospitality just like Grandma’s
Published 12:20 am Saturday, May 6, 2017
New wedding venue aims to deliver family feeling
An idea that began as a family wedding has become a venue that owners hope will become a go-to place for Southern hospitality.
Lynn Wilson Wardlaw lives in Atlanta, but much of her heart is on a farm in Covington County.
“We have this family farm that has been in existence since the late 1800s,” she said. “It has just always been a working farm. My grandparents, Erneast and Zelma Earl Spicer, had cattle and horses, and my great-grandparents also had pigs, chickens and all of that.”
There is approximately 500 acres of county land off County Road 70, and Wardlaw said it made her sad to see it idle.
“When my daughter married four years ago, we had a wedding on front lawn,” Wardlaw said. “I loved putting that on. I was working hard in Atlanta with AFLAC, but looking for AFLAC, but also looking for something different to do. So we said, ‘Let’s put a wedding venue down there.’ ”
Wardlaw hopes Spicer Farm will embody her grandmother’s spirit.
“My grandmother was very hospitable; a true Southern lady,” Wardlaw says. “She didn’t sit down to eat, until everyone else happy and fed.
“That just spilled over on to us. She loved it when people were having fun. I love it when people are having fun,” she said.
Wardlaw said with the Spicer Farm project, wanted to honor her family, and the Lord.
“We had the concept and cleared a little bit of land,” she said. “We had no idea it would turn into this grand thing. The Lord is blessing it beyond imagination.”
Her hope was to book two events in the first year.
“We opened for our first event on March 17,” she said. “Since then, five people have booked other events.”
Wardlaw said she is feeling the pull of family ties and wants to spend more time in Alabama. But for now, she’ll continue to work also in Atlanta, and depend upon her son and daughter-in-law, Chris and Kimberly Sasser of Andalusia, for help.
“Chris and Kimberly are showing it and running it when I can’t be there,” she said.
The open-air venue can accommodate up to 200 people, she said. It includes a 2,000 square foot pole barn, a silo that has become a serving area, and a fire pit.
“We offer – a la carte pricing. What makes us different is we have three packages – gold, platinum and diamond. The Diamond package includes everything from rehearsal to wedding day, complete use of venue, honeymoon and transportation to our 100-year-old beach cottage on Grayton Beach.”
Wardlaw’s Nashville son-in-law is a musician, and his group will be available as the house band. Long-term, she hopes to do an annual music event, as well as weddings.
For those interested in the venue, an open house is planned from 4 until 7 p.m. on Sat., May 20. A number of wedding-related vendors will be on hand, as well.
Spicer Farm is located at 15380 County Road 70 in Andalusia. For additional information, visit www.spicerfarm.com.