Where wedding bells ring

Published 1:25 pm Thursday, February 12, 2009

Glen Autry said he didn’t set out to have a wedding chapel when he had a building constructed atop a hill off SCR 47 in Chelsea. He just wanted a place where teens could get together and have good, clean fun.

But, when Teen Town didn’t work out, he decided to create a venue where specific groups could meet for more controlled activities. Thus, The Partying Place was born.

Since that time, dozens of church parties (including parties all day on Valentine’s Day this year), family reunions, wedding receptions and other events have taken place at the beautiful facility, which opened 10 years ago.

When people began asking to hold weddings there, Autry built the adjoining wedding chapel. Several years earlier, he had served as pastor of a church, but had since let his ministerial license lapse. After three or four ministers failed to show up for weddings, he decided to have his license renewed so he could perform ceremonies.

The Chelsea Wedding Chapel has a wedding director and photographer on staff. They can also arrange for catering or a bride can bring in her own caterer.

The chapel is beautifully decorated, and although none of the decorations can be taken down for a particular wedding, a bride may add accents of her own colors.

One bride said she appreciated this because it saved the hassle of extensive decorations. And it was extra convenient, she said, for everything to be in one place. She said Autry “was there to make my day perfect … He puts his heart and soul into making that place beautiful.”

Another bride said she appreciated the choice of either an indoor or an outdoor chapel, a beautiful well-furnished bride’s room, a great sound system and a huge dance floor with lights to set a party mood.

Although everything has not worked out as Autry planned at the beginning, he is pleased and excited about the way things are going.

“After all,” he said, “nothing (on earth) is mine anyway; it’s all God’s. So whatever He wants to do with it is O.K. with me.”

The Wedding Chapel and Partying Place can be reached at 229-9437 or glenautry@gmail.com.