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How do you find event venues that aren't normally for weddings, but will work?

TL;DR: Places that that advertise as Wedding Venues are too expensive or already booked, need to find a more offbeat venue to make this work! Quick details: 75 person guest list, outdoors preferred but with a tent rental or covered area in case of rain. My fiancé and I are having a hell of a time finding a venue for our Sept 10, 2016 wedding. We had planned to have it in his parents' backyard but it's looking like that might not work out, so... Plan B. Our budget is tight, $10k for the whole shebang, we are paying for it ourselves and can't afford more than that. Pretty much every venue listed on Wedding Wire or The Knot within a 50 mi radius of the wedding area is either quoting me prices of $7k+ or is already booked up!! We really need to spend less than $3k on venue INCLUDING all tent/table/chair/lighting rentals... We need to think out of the box... I'd love to find an empty field, old barn, etc that we can just rent for cheap and DIY everything... but have no idea how to go about locating these places. We live 8 hour's drive away from the area we're getting married so it's not like we can just drive around and look. SO! Any tips for locating event venues that aren't normally used for weddings, aren't advertised on Wedding Wire, etc? Or affordable, flexible venues in general?? We're starting with local parks but don't have many ideas outside of that. Thanks in advance for any help!!

 

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