by Michelle Watson
What started out as a dream for Mike and Angie Lester has turned into a beautiful wedding venue north of Clear Lake called Winan Creek Barn.
“I had a friend in high school who lived in a barn house and I absolutely loved it,” said Angie. “We live on an acreage and up the road from us was a barn that I often admired. Mike did some research, found the owner, wrote him a letter and he contacted us a couple of weeks later.”
Originally the Lesters wanted to make the barn into their home, but after a coworker contacted them about her daughter getting married in the barn, the wheels started turning in a different direction. A lack of rustic venues in the area and availability of what was in the area, got the Lesters thinking.
“We started looking into the wedding venue business and became interested,” said Mike.
Party planning and decorating is something that Angie said she has always loved doing and the idea really spoke to her.
“We made the decision to share this beautiful project and land with our community,” said Angie.
The barn started with dirt floors and clay walls, so the Lesters knew they had work to do. Mike knocked out the walls and leveled the floor for concrete. Two wings were added on each side of the structure. To keep the character of the barn intact, they insulated from the outside in with insulation under the tin siding and roof. Heated floors, a furnace and air conditioning was also installed. A loft covered the entire main area of the barn. The Lesters opened up the building by removing the floor from the south section of the building.
“Our goal is to make the wedding process as stress free as possible. We would love to be that ‘one stop’ venue that offers everything a couple would want and need,” said Angie.
Winan Creek Barn, located at 708 342nd St., Hanlontown, offers entire weekend packages so that couples can host their rehearsal, ceremony, reception and gift opening all at the same venue.
“We are avid auction attendees, so we have accumulated a lot of decor and additional items for our guests,” said Mike. “We do not charge extra if guests want to use our decorations.”
Mike and Angie meet with couples a number of times to help with the planning, including seating arrangements, cen-To read more of this article, please login or sign up for our E-Edition