Category: News

You’re invited! 2017 Public Event Listings

Every year Willowdale Estate hosts a series of public events to share our unique space with our friends, neighbors and clients.  Please join us as we open our doors to the public. Events are separated into three categories:


HISTORIC TOURS – Guided tours of the estate featuring historic details, context and conversation about the history of Willowdale with a light reception to follow. 

SIGNATURE EVENTS – Themed gatherings tailored to the seasons offering food, drink and entertainment.

WILLOWDALE KITCHENS – Food focused events including cooking classes led by our Executive Chef AND our exclusive private dining Red Door Supper Club experience. 


Date: January 20th, 2017

Tent Season (May-October)

Willowdale Estate is one of the few historic mansions in New England that can offer parties in every month of the year. In this post we are going to celebrate the end of our 2016 Tent Season by looking back at the parties we’ve hosted this year and sharing some details to get you all ready for more fun next year!

Between May-October 2016 we will have hosted 74 Weddings and 38 Corporate, Social, and Public Events! (more…)

Date: October 5th, 2016

VIDEO: Our Inspiration | Willowdale Estate


See what inspires our employees to create in our latest video!


Date: June 3rd, 2016
Categories: Events, News, Weddings

2016 Tent Installation Video

Each year Willowdale Estate installs a Sperry Tent for weddings and events. The tent is installed just before the first weekend in May and is taken down at the end of October.


Date: May 6th, 2016
Categories: News, Tent Season


In this post we explore the long history of supper clubs, and why you should embrace this adventurous eating trend.


Like any great social movement secret supper clubs in the United States emerged during prohibition and became even more popular in the 1930s and 1940s as establishments located on the edge of town or in remote rural areas became destinations for elaborate dinners and nightlife. Traditionally supper clubs were in a location that was not generally open to the public featuring cocktails, many courses and sometimes entertainment.


Date: March 11th, 2016

BEST OF 2015

We had a lot of fun finding the most loved photos, blogs, events and posts from this year across our social sharing platforms. Today we are sharing your favorite things in 2015! We hope you enjoy looking back and we are looking forward to another year of wonderful things to share!


In October we shared a photo of our iconic red door all decorated for the fall season with mums, gourds, and a seasonal wreath. The bright blue sky looks so great against the red slate roof and fieldstone! (photo: Sarah Boucher)

instagram - we love a great seasonal wreath!


From our recent post “PANTONE COLOR OF THE YEAR” the most pinned image was our Classic/Chic color combo pairing Rose Quartz, Navy Blue, Serenity, and Old Rose. (photo: Sarah Boucher)

old rose navy blue rose quartz serenity wedding inspiration from willowdale estate boston area venue


Our most liked status on Facebook is a very recent post- a photo of our 2016 Best of Weddings award! The Knot Best of Weddings is an award representing the highest-rated wedding professionals as reviewed by real couples, their families and wedding guests on The Knot! It’s an honor to be recognized alongside some of the best venues and catering companies in the business and our followers on facebook cheered us on!



The most viewed blog post of the year was “REAL WEDDING: Jessica & Edward” which was posted on April 10th! Spring is a time of great anticipation at Willowdale Estate, the tulips are about to come up, the Sperry Tent will be installed, and we’ll get to use more of our scenic outdoor spaces. (photo: Lisa Rigby)
001 lisa rigby - may outdoor garden courtyard weddingreception sweetheart table flowers (746x398)


Our most read newsletter of 2015 was actually our very FIRST newsletter of the year “JANUARY 2015” which contained information about our new series of Signature Events, our upcoming Wedding Open House, and lots of fun info about new pages on our website. (photo: Bharat Parmar)

snow photo at willowdale estate jan 15 newsletter bharat parmar


The most popular ticketed public event this year was our FROZEN Tea Parties. Our tickets sold out so quickly that we had to do an encore event which also sold out in just a few hours! Check out a few photos from the event on our blog post “Themed Celebration: Tea Parties at Willowdale Estate”. (photo: Bharat Parmar)

frozen tea party at willowdale estate a wedding and events venue north of boston


The most popular free public event this year was our “2nd Annual Bluegrass & BBQ”! Guests enjoyed our spacious garden courtyard, tent and side lawns for an evening of great music, food, lawn games and community! (photo: Shane Godfrey)

garden courtyard willowdale estate topsfield massachusetts wedding and event venue

If you missed any of these great posts keep in touch with us on all of our social sharing platforms listed above!

Date: December 31st, 2015
Categories: Events, News, Weddings


Surprise, surprise there are TWO colors this year: Rose Quartz and Serenity!

pantone color 2016 rose quartz serenity wedding inspiration from willowdale estate boston area venue
You might be thinking- how can I use these colors without making my wedding look like a gender reveal party? With some savvy pairings and use of rich fabric textures, creative floral design and signage we see a very bright future for this powerful combo of color!

For the first time PANTONE selected two colors in a symbolic gesture. The colors evoke a sense of balance and equality and bring on feelings of warmth, order and peace. As usual, PANTONE is an excellent resource for color inspiration. Here are 3 color combinations we could see at the basis for wedding themes in 2016.


fig silver gray rose quartz serenity wedding inspiration from willowdale estate boston area venue
These four colors are balanced, strong and modern. Picture a silver grey suit with a rose quartz and fig colored boutonniere. The bridesmaids could wear serenity colored dresses with lovely bouquets of fig and rose quartz. The best thing about this combination is the pop of color and the high contrast between the fig color and the other softer tones.


rose quartz serenity blooming dahlia artctic wedding inspiration from willowdale estate boston area venue
This color palate would look great for a summer wedding. Keep the wedding theme fresh by incorporating geometric patterns, fun signage, and unexpected twists on traditional wedding attire like floral patterns, and perhaps a bow tie or suspenders for the gents!


old rose navy blue rose quartz serenity wedding inspiration from willowdale estate boston area venue
There is something strong and chic with two shades of blue and two shades of pink. This color pairing is balanced and reminds us of the classic coastal color palate for a day by the sea. Shades of pink flowers look so lovely against blues and the benefit of navy blue is it is widely available in linen, clothing, paper goods and other common wedding materials.
We are looking forward to seeing the ways these colors are used in the coming year!
(all images provided by Sarah Boucher with color inspiration from PANTONE)

Date: December 3rd, 2015

New Patio Design

Willowdale Estate is part of a unique program of public/private partnerships under the Department of Conservation and Recreation’s (DCR) Historic Curatorship Program. Under the program, DCR enters into a long-term lease with a private curator/tenant who pays rent in the form of services, specifically the rehabilitation and maintenance of the property. The Fandetti-Forsythe family began the process of rehabilitating the mansion in 1999.  Briar Forsythe hosted the first wedding at Willowdale on July 7th, 2007, and she has continued to improve and restore the property since its opening.

nate creamer ceremony image

In April 2014 restoration work began on the garden courtyard patio, which was a combination of stone and large poured concrete squares.  Working with McLaughlin Masonry to design and construct the new courtyard patio, we incorporated colors of stone that mirrored our fieldstone and the slate roof of the property, and evoked the craftsmen designs that are found within the estate.  We love this photo from a recent wedding at Willowdale Estate- shot by Nate Creamer Photography. Let us know what you think!

Date: June 16th, 2014
Categories: News