Thanksgiving Day is more than a holiday here at Howe Farms; in 2014, Don and Talene Howe hosted their own wedding here at the farm, and things have never been the same since. In honor of this special day, we sat down with Mr. and Mrs. Howe to learn what made Howe Farms into the incredible place it is today.
Howe We Started
The Vineyard Hall was originally Mr. Howe’s hobby space where he kept his car collection, held game nights, and housed his office. As a team, Don and Talene worked together to remodel the space for their dream wedding. The Vineyard space was then again remodeled in January of 2019, into the beautiful hall that it is today. The Vineyard’s outdoor ceremony site, Ceremony Hill, was designed for their daughter Rachel’s wedding in May of 2016. In September of 2016, The Apple Barn became the second venue at Howe Farms. Their daughter Cherith married in this stunning ‘something old, something new’ venue in 2018. Our upcoming venue, The Woodlands at Five Gables, will host their daughter Miranda’s reception in 2021. As you can tell, Howe Farms is so much more than a business to the Howe’s – it is a part of who they are.
In the midst of their engagement, Don and Talene were searching for their ideal local Chattanooga event space for their wedding day. Despite all of their searching, they were continuously drawn back to their own farm. They loved their scenic views and knew it would be ideal for beautiful photography. They saw the great potential in Don’s hobby space due to its spaciousness and versatility.
A handful of people asked if they could host their wedding at the farm prior to Howe Farms even coming to be. In fact, there were a total of six weddings held before Don and Talene even celebrated their own wedding! There was not a plan to build a wedding and events space until Don and Talene were in the midst of planning their wedding.
“It was so wonderful for us, so we wanted to be able to create that for other people as well!”
– Talene Howe
Howe We’ve Changed
Howe Farms has certainly changed over the years. As previously mentioned, The Vineyard Hall started out as Don’s hobby space. The farm began as a place for growing strawberries, hosting gatherings, riding ATV’s, catching fish, and so much more. In 2014, the farm had a drastic change – The Vineyard Hall opened as an official event space. Originally, there were no plans other than to prepare and remodel The Vineyard. Both Talene & Don come from a medical background, and had zero experience running a wedding venue prior to The Vineyard Hall’s opening. After many requests and the experience of their own wedding, together, they did their homework, researching what brides were looking for, and now they help provide dream wedding venues.
“Over the past six years, ideas have evolved as the wedding industry is a trendy business.”
– Talene Howe
Howe We’re Different
When asked about their best ideas so far, Don endearingly answered “Asking Talene to marry me.” At various points along the way, different ideas seemed to be the best. The exclusive décor room features certainly can be found around the top of the list of great ideas. This feature allows our couples to use any and all décor that is found in their venue’s specific décor room – at no additional cost. Not only does this save our couples from spending money on décor they may not use again; it also prevents them from having to haul those items in and out on their special day.
Venues are historically created to feature and accommodate the bride, as they should! However, at Howe Farms, we do not stop there. We believe the groom is equally important. Our fishing pond has always been open to our grooms and their groomsmen to help give them something to do while their bride-to-be spends her day getting ready. However, the Howe’s realized they needed another solution for rainy wedding days and those who do not enjoy fishing. So, Don and Talene decided to create The Bowtie Club, a community game room lounge, to accommodate the guys on their wedding days, new as of 2020.
“We are working to bring in cutting edge, innovative options for our couples that they might not find anywhere else.”
– Don Howe
Howe We Love
The simple answer of how Don and Talene got together is love. The two first met and dated in high school, and are more than grateful for God’s grace and for second chances. They enjoy dreaming about Howe Farms, furthering the future development, together.
“I love the idea of dreaming with Don, visualizing unique things to offer our couples that they may not have even thought of themselves. Don is my kindred spirit.”
– Talene Howe
“God has blessed us throughout this year of challenges. We are so grateful for our versatile staff and all of our friends and family.”
– Don and Talene Howe