In-person events are on their way back, but it’s still likely to be several months before high-capacity indoor gatherings completely return. Since it’s currently summer, one of the best ways to encourage attendance at new gatherings is to host them in outdoor venues. Think beyond a tented banquet, and instead consider destinations where the scenery, activity, and memory-making opportunities all combined.
Some of our favorites are animal reserves, botanical gardens, and other nature attractions. These spaces all easily accommodate social distancing and abundant fresh air while also providing off-the-beaten-path ways for guests to mingle and enjoy the experience. Here are just a few spots we recommend:
- Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden – Miami/South Florida
Home to acres of rare trees, orchids, flowering plants, palms, hummingbirds, butterflies, and more, the Fairchild Garden is a perennial favorite for events and gatherings in one of South Florida’s most picturesque natural settings.
- Butterfly World – Fort Lauderdale/South Florida
More than 20,000 native and exotic butterflies can be seen at this destination which offers screened open-air spaces, open gardens, waterfalls, and other open-air exhibits.
- Calloway Gardens – Georgia/ Outside Atlanta
Tucked away in forests of pine and oak, the beautiful lakesides, wildflower gardens, and golf courses of Calloway Gardens are a special treat. The main lakefront area often hosts an inflatable floating obstacle course during summer months, and the spot is also typically home to the outdoor theatre where the FSU Flying High Circus performs (performances are set to resume in 2021, schedule has not yet been announced).
- Babcock Ranch Eco Tours – Punta Gorda/Florida West Coast
Just outside Fort Myers, this working cattle ranch and nature preserve gives a glimpse of what life was like in “Old Florida” through guided tours that include photo safaris and even night-time experiences.
- Safari West – Santa Rosa, California
At 400+ acres, this wildlife attraction features a wide array of animals including lemurs, buffalos, rhinoceros, giraffes, and other favorites from the African Serengeti. Extra special options here include glamping accommodations, full-service food and beverage, and up-close-and-personal animal interactions.
- Franciscan Gardens – Orange County/Southern California
In San Juan Capistrano, the same destination known for the annual swallow migration, the historic mission from 200-years ago still stands as a tribute to the many settlers that created the SoCal lifestyle we know today. Outdoor venue space adjacent to the historic site is available year round.
- Garden of the Gods – Colorado Springs, CO
The amazing red rock formations are just part of the experience here. Rock climbing, jeep tours, electric bike and Segway tours, and an authentic historic ranch are all amazing open-air activities that await.
- Cave of the Winds Mountain Park – Manitou Springs/Central Colorado
An intricate system of multiple caves make for a fascinating event highlight, as do other on-site activities such as ax throwing, panning for gems, a ropes course, or soaring across the canyon on one of two thrill rides. September through May, private after-hours event space in the main lodge is also available.
These are just a few selections, and some of the many different options that VIBE can help you explore for getting “out there” with your next event!
About the VIBE Agency: The VIBE Agency is a Miami-based award-winning full-service production agency that specializes in the creation and orchestration of live and virtual experiences for the corporate industry. The agency is forward-thinking and was recognized as one of the 50 top event companies by Special Events magazine in 2019 and 2020. Most recently, Valerie Bihet, founder of the VIBE was named a Smart Women in Meetings 2021 Hall of Fame honoree by Smartmeetings, for her consistent work advancing the industry. If it can’t be live, make it VIBE!