A Commission for Appearance??

The next step in our trying-to-build-a-wedding-venue journey after the application was to make an appearance at the appearance commission (ha...Corny I know). Who knew they even had such a thing...a whole committee for the way things look...what is Joan Rivers heading this up?? Well no, actually she did not make an appearance and neither did that Osborn girl (since when did she become a fashion guru?!?).  I digress...In Chatham County, and I'm sure others too, there is an appearance commission that has to approve your landscaping and architectural features so that your project is in keeping with the County's standards, ordinances, etc...
Good ole' Joan
This was a relatively small meeting, I think there were maybe 7 other people there besides Dana and I. Six of those people were members of the committee and the moderator was Angela, aka our guide, counselor, and cheerleader through this whole re-zoning process. I must say, every time we saw her at a meeting I felt instantly comforted...she was like a human "blankey" for rezoning.

Everyone loves a little comfort every now and again

We were the only item on the agenda for that evening so all eyes were on us and the lovely power point we made concerning our project. We explained our vision for the property and what it was to be used for...we went over the various features (aka quirks) that the property possesses and we ended up on the page that had our site plan. This page listed out all of the types of trees that we wanted to plant and where lighting would go....you know all the nitty gritty stuff that the county required us to detail.

Now, everyone was super nice and super enthusiastic about the project! (I am channeling my inner Dana with all those supers) However, they were also super opinionated! I had no idea that people cared so much about what other people's property looked like! I mean they cared about the variety of plants that we planted and more or less forbade the use of Bradford pears due to the smell...I remember thinking...are you planning on sniffing our property on the regular?? They did have other suggestions to replace the ones that offended....I remember a cherry tree coming up and one member said "while we are on the discussion of cherry trees...I think we should go with the xyz variety as opposed to the lmnop..." Seriously. I had no idea what the difference between the two varieties was...and I am sure it is significant...but really?!?

In the end we did get approval with a few conditions attached. We had to put up a deer fence, have a location for a dumpster (a dumpster was not in the original plan but they felt like to property may need one), change up the plantings, and submit a design for the sign. All of these things we can live with and we really did have a good time at the meeting. Like I said, everyone was really nice and helpful and really wanted to see the project succeed! We also get to reference the experience and have a good laugh every now and then whenever we see a  cherry tree.