Birmingham Zoo is an exotic wedding ceremony and reception venue based in Birmingham, Alabama. This venue is a great option for the couple who are truly kids at heart. If you want a wedding celebration that is going to stand out, then this is the place for you. The staff at the Birmingham Zoo goes above and beyond to make sure that your wedding day is one that you will enjoy and remember.
Facilities and Capacity
With a maximum capacity of around 2,500 guests, you’re going to be pressed to find another venue that has as much space as the Birmingham Zoo. The zoo offers several amazing rental spaces throughout the property that include a secluded, wooded area, interactive barn animal area and even a space that overlooks the African bull elephant exhibit. As for transportation and access, the wheelchair accessible venue has parking, and golf-cart rentals are available.
For those couples who want to really wow their guests, event extras are offered, which include animal demonstrations, greetings and walkabouts. Not only is the venue available for wedding ceremonies and receptions, but it is also open for bridal showers, elopements, engagement parties and rehearsal dinners. Some of the additional services that the Birmingham Zoo offers include:
Whether you are looking for fun finger foods or an elegant, sit-down dinner, the catering staff at the Birmingham Zoo will make sure that you and your guests are completely satisfied. As part of their culinary services, the venue offers barware, flatware, linens, plates and cups. They even offer bar services which include signature drinks, specialty wine, premium liquor and specialty beer. Some of their catering services include:
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Recommended by 87% of couples
11 User photos
Brooke Durrance · Getting married on 10/26/2019
The Birmingham zoo
The girls are fantastic they keep in touch. They make sure your day is your day. My wedding has not yet passed but it has been a breeze with them so far. I’m so looking forward for the big day with themSent on 02/07/2019
Carol Lee · Married on 10/27/2018
Beautiful Fall Wedding
We originally had reserved Gabrella Manor for my granddaughters wedding. Then by accident we heard about the Lodge at the Birmingham Zoo. We went to check it out and my granddaughter fell in love. A stone lodge in the middle of the woods on the grounds of the Birmingham Zoo. The perfect backdrop to her fairy-tale outdoor wedding. The only "glitch" if there was one, was the animals. We paid to have two animals for 30 minutes. One of the animals we wanted was not available that day and we knew that was a possibility. However, it was hard to determine WHEN to have the animals there since we knew what time the ceremony started so we thought 30 minutes before the ceremony. Didn't really work. The animals arrived but none of the guest had. So it wasn't a fault of the zoo as just timing. But after the wedding it was decided that it really wasn't worth the cost since no one got to see the animals and they were not there the entire 30 minutes. But hey, it was money for the zoo and not much $$ at all so we were okay. Just wanted it to be a note as to better time when to have the animals arrive. Make it much closer to the arrival time - or even better - during the reception!! The staff was great. The grounds and interior of the lodge were great. We decided to have the wedding in the grass in the front of the lodge instead of by the fireplace. That worked out perfectly for us. We had the reception in front of the fireplace. We had the catering and cake inside the lodge.Sent on 01/07/2019
Stephanie · Married on 06/09/2018
Great spot, but not so great to work with
We got married in the Lodge, which is really beautiful and also an amazing price for what you get. I loved everything about the venue itself. The event coordinator left a lot to be desired, however. I think one of the biggest selling points (if not THE biggest selling point) besides the cost is the fact that you can have animal visitors at your wedding. I let Hayden, the coordinator, know early on that I wanted to have animals before and during our wedding. I even dropped big hints about wanting a visit from the fennec if she was having a good day that day.Sent on 01/27/2019
Communication with Hayden was very spotty, but I thought everything was on track. One week before the wedding, I sent her my finalized timeline which included when I wanted the animal guests. She then sent me a message back saying that because I hadn't told her I wanted animals, it was too late for us to have them. She said I should look at my contract, which stated that the handlers needed to be notified at least two weeks in advance. She implied that I was the one who was responsible for taking care of this step. I had copies of the months old emails I had sent her saying that I wanted animal visitors before AND during our reception, so I asked that she correct this HUGE mistake which was totally on her part. Having animals was the whole reason I wanted to get married at the zoo in the first place!
Because it was such short notice, we could only get parrots but she still charged us for all three of the the animal services (the greeting, demonstation, and walk about) which ended up being $750 extra. It's been six months since our wedding and I thought I would be less salty about it now, but I still wish she hadn't screwed that up. Parrots are pretty and all, but I definitely wanted a bigger variety of animal guests. Especially considering how much we paid for them.
TL;DR Get everything in writing VERY EARLY ON in the process if you're working with Hayden.
I'd also like to mention the food. At the point that we reserved our date, they were just transitioning to in house catering. We thought we were going to be able to choose our own, but ended up having to go with the one the zoo provided. The chef was really awesome though and did a great job with our dinner. The menu was pretty limited, so we chose street tacos. If I had gone with an outside vendor, I was thinking about maybe Asian noodle stations but there wasn't anything similar on the zoo's menu. I think if we had actually asked the chef to do noodles, he would have so going in don't feel like you're constrained to what items they have listed. The chef would be totally happy making whatever you could possibly want. He seemed like the type of dude that would like a challenge.
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