On January 15th, 2020 we broke ground on The Eloise. It was a day filled with many emotions. The Eloise has been in the making since 2016. During this time, we’ve spent countless hours researching the design of the venue, selecting the perfect piece of land, rezoning the land, and going through about 9 months of preconstruction design. We’ve poured our hearts, our dedication, and passion into this process so as you can imagine, there are a lot of emotions.
We drove up to the land like we have so many times before but this time the feeling was different. We knew that we were not going to be the only people out there this time. The first day of construction there wasn’t much going on and to be completely honest it was a little disappointing. Despite knowing the construction schedule and what was going to go on the first day, I had it in my head that there was going to be this large production. Instead, it was a couple guys placing silt fencing around the perimeter of the property for erosion control. Wahh whahhhh. It wasn’t until the next week when heavy equipment was brought on site and we could see dirt being moved.
Over the course of a month and a half we’ve seen our property transform from an untouched prairie land to a full on out construction site with mounds of dirt, rock, and heavy equipment. One of the first things the excavation crew worked on was our driveway and parking lot. Once the driveway was cut in they were able to bring more equipment on site to dig out the parking lot and venue. We knew going into excavation that we would hit rock. It wasn’t a matter of if we’d hit rock but when we would hit it. We hit rock at about 6 ft and the parking lot needed to be dug another 6-7 ft to be at rough grade elevation. We had to bring in a big jackhammer and ripping tooth to hammer and cut out the rock. They were out there for a good week and half working nonstop to hammer the rock out from the parking lot.
While the parking lot was being hammered away, another crew surveyed and staked out the venue. Shortly thereafter, the excavation crew dug out the venue and rebar was brought onsite for the concrete crew. They laid rebar down and built the forms for the footings and foundation walls. This is when we did our champagne toast photoshoot and announced we broke ground. This phase of construction went really quick. It seemed like in a matter of a week the venue went from being a compacted pile of dirt to an actual building with concrete walls.
With a snowstorm in the forecast, the concrete crew worked a Saturday to finish building the forms so they could pour concrete early to beat the storm. The concrete crew poured the foundation walls in a day. I came out to the site that day and it was a crazy production. Cement trucks were in and out all day and the crew worked around the clock pouring concrete. Because of the concrete crew, we were able to get ahead of schedule and buy us time for when the snowstorm and cold snap hit. The extra days in our schedule allowed us to stay on track for waterproofing and insulation foam to be placed on time. After the foundation walls were able to cure the venue was backfilled.
We are officially on to the next phase of construction. Over the next 3-4 weeks, the plumber will lay underground plumbing, we will get electricity to the venue, and the upper and lower interior slabs will be poured. We are starting the interior design process and will share design selections as they are finalized. We are currently looking at samples for the flooring in the loft, paint colors for the entire venue, light fixtures, and doors.
Ben and I want to thank you for coming along this journey with us and for being a part of the making of The Eloise. We think it’s extremely special that our couples and vendors get to be a part of this process and see the construction of the venue.
Photo Credit: Larissa Marie Photography