Planning your Minneapolis Elopement

Choosing a more intimate celebration of your wedding means you get to focus on only the most important things – you and your partner.

I approach elopement photography with two goals – document your joy together, and make sure the photos feel natural and intimate.

If you are planning on eloping in Minneapolis or St Paul, I have some tips to keep in mind and also some suggestions for your photography. I also offer special elopement photography packages for weekday weddings (Monday – Thursday) and for winter.

Eloping in the time of COVID or Oh, hey, is that affecting your wedding plans?

You know what I see? I see couples being able to put everything on the table in terms of planning a wedding, and then only pick up the elements that matter to them. 

Socially conscious giving and a courthouse elopement? On the table. 

Series of small gatherings of family and friends? On the table. 

Small ceremony with big party later? ON THE TABLE!

I offer a bunch of flexible wedding options for weddings and elopements.

Let’s celebrate the way we are gathering now.

Minneapolis Elopement tips:

Some of these ideas are focused on a non-COVID world, so as restrictions shift and the realities change, some options might also shift. St Paul still requires in person appointments for a marriage license, Minneapolis has options for in person marriage license and they have had options for remote only marriage licenses as well. You can also check out the MN Events Coalition, which compiles the current state requirements and best practices and puts it into plain English for weddings and events.

If you want an intimate feel, choose times when spaces will be less used. At Minneapolis Government Center, this means perhaps looking at the end of the day so that you can use the central atrium space for your intimate ceremony. At St Paul City Hall, likewise using the space after hours will allow you to use the stunning art deco lobby. At Como Conservatory, mornings before opening are a perfect space for a slot of sunshine. Think about mornings and weekday afternoons!

Choose a location you love for your ceremony, and consider an additional location that you love. You can take a walk with your new spouse and have a few portraits along the way.

Minnesota is a gorgeous state, but it is also really into proper paperwork. Check out the requirements for your marriage licenses (most counties require a few days to process) and also make sure you line up an officiant (I’ve got recommendations if you need them).

Parks in the metro can be reserved for a small fee, and many can be used without reservation but will remain open to the public. Most public spaces (theaters, museums, como conservatory, etc) have small rental fees and require a reservation.

Think about a few flowers and otherwise keep the details to a minimum. An intimate wedding doesn’t need anything but love, an officiant, and two witnesses!

You do need two witnesses, but I count as one so you can keep your wedding as intimate as possible!



I’m happy to help with ideas for locations, putting together your timeline, and other troubleshooting!


Coverage of your ceremony and portraits to showcase your day. You’ll also get edited images in high resolution delivered to your inbox.


Travel within 60 miles of Minneapolis is included and I’ve got options for anywhere in MN. I’ll gladly hike or get in a canoe for your perfect spot.

Locations for your Minneapolis Elopement

Its the land of 10,000 lakes, and there are no shortage of amazing spaces for weddings outside. Here are a few of my favorite parks and park districts to look into, as well as my favorite architectural spaces for elopements in the twin cities. I include location ideas and brainstorming along with every elopement package, so please contact me for more info!

Minneapolis metro parks for elopements:

•MINNESOTA STATE PARKS FOR ELOPEMENTS: Fort Snelling is in Minneapolis! Both Afton and Interstate park are a close drive for stunning wilderness.
• MINNEAPOLIS PARKS FOR ELOPEMENTS: Take a look at Minnehaha Falls and Stone Arch Bridge for truly iconic backdrops. A smaller park might offer more privacy- check out Gluek park in NE, Boom Island, and Lake Hiawatha.
• THREE RIVERS PARK DISTRICT FOR ELOPEMENTS: TRPD in the metro area offer spaces and really well maintained trails for some gorgeous parks. They also require permits and reservations. Silverwood is a tiny gem. Gale Woods Farm and Richardson Nature Center both have large spaces and indoor options.
• ST PAUL PARKS FOR ELOPEMENTS: Hidden Falls is the Mississippi river valley, Raspberry Island offers views of downtown St Paul from the river, and Swede Hollow is a hidden gem of a park.

Historical and Architectural spaces for elopements:

These all offer spaces that are also open to the public, and some have private spaces for rent for elopements:

Hennepin County Government center
Minneapolis City Hall
St Paul City Hall
Minnesota Capitol Building
Gale Mansion
Aster cafe
Landmark Center St Paul
Como Conservatory

My husband and I were recently married in a small civil ceremony at the Hennepin County Government Center. Becca was so easy to work with and captured all of the best moments of our wedding ceremony including some portraits over at the Gutherie afterwards. Our personalities came shining through and we were so happy to have her capture the beginning moments of our lives together.

  • Melanie

Planning a small wedding?

I know its a wacky time to plan a wedding, and I’d love to talk with you about documenting your small wedding. Should we chat with you about your photography and plans?