The Fire Chief Project: What’s Seattle’s Newest Wedding Destination?

King County promotes the education facility at its Brightwater Wastewater Treatment Center
The Fire Chief Project: What’s Seattle’s Newest Wedding Destination?
With room for 260 guests, the Brightwater Wastewater Treatment Center is available for large events, including wedding receptions.

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It has LEED platinum green building certification. Room for 260 guests. A full catering kitchen. A dance floor and excellent audio-visual equipment. Seven acres of gardens. Plenty of parking. So why shouldn’t Brightwater Environmental Education & Community Center in King County, Wash., be an appealing spot for weddings?

In the view of the center staff, it matters not at all that the facility is part of the Brightwater Wastewater Treatment Center. After all, the treatment plant is a zero-odor facility – the processes are all enclosed. The county staff deserves credit for stepping out boldly and promoting what is, after all, a beautiful place.

The center’s promotion as a venue for weddings – and other special events – has picked up substantial publicity, locally (KIRO TV) and nationally, most notably in the online edition of Time magazine.

The county began advertising Brightwater Center on Facebook during the week of April 7. There are doubters, of course, but Susan Tallarico, center director, says the facility is great for indoor or outdoor weddings. In fact, she says, one wedding has already been booked.

One advantage Brightwater has is price – at $2,000 for an 8-hour rental it competes well against popular upscale venues that charge $5,000 to $10,000. Money from the events at Brightwater goes toward the center’s environmental education programs.

Here’s a hat tip to Tallarico and her team for tackling, head on, a stereotype of wastewater treatment facilities. May many couple tie the knot at Brightwater.


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