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Falling for The Pond at Laurel Cove

The sun rested on the tops of the trees before descending over the mountain. Blazing streaks of reds, yellows, and oranges stretched across the water bathing the resident ducks in color.  They clustered at the far corner of the pond shying away from the crowds at the grand farmhouse-turned wedding venue, The Pond at Laurel Cove. 

Old Fort residents and owners Lisa and Patrick Ellis were excited to host local dignitaries, Chamber staff, friends, and family for the official Ribbon Cutting held Tuesday, October 22, 2019 at their home and business. The covered porch and adjacent stone patio with pergola were meticulously decorated.  Guests were able to tour the downstairs area that features a large gourmet kitchen, beautiful sitting room complete with "wedding couch",  a bride’s dressing room, and a groom’s room.

Although the classic white, two-story farmhouse was built in 2010, it gives visitors the impression that it has many stories to tell—like an old soul of a home.  The land on which it sits has been in the family since 1971 and offers stunning mountain views, privacy, and convenience—just what one wants for a special occasion. The couple decided to share their beautiful home as a wedding and event venue after receiving several comments from family and friends.

"It's a great time to be in someone's life [a wedding]," Lisa said. "To be able to share our home and this property with people at such a hopeful time in their lives is special." 

Whether it's a Sweet 16 party, a reunion, or a wedding, the Ellis' goal is to take the stress off of the guests. The business is a family affair that includes Lisa's sister Designer Dee Dee Gardner and daughter Madalyn Davis who helps with a variety of event needs. The fully-equipped kitchen is a caterer's delight, and if a party has special needs, they will work to accommodate them to ensure a smooth and enjoyable event. 

They offer three ceremony spots on the property, each with its own unique view of the lake. The Pergola off the porch is closest to the house, the Point that features the home as a backdrop, and the soon-to-be-completed Amphitheater providing lake vistas in a beautifully woodsy setting. The Pond welcomes parties of varying sizes from intimate gatherings to festive galas of up to 150 people. "We work with an incredible group of local and regional vendors so that we can provide as much or as little as the client needs," Lisa said. 

With its convenient location to Asheville, Charlotte, and Spartanburg, The Pond is an optimal wedding and special occasion venue. Old Fort Mayor Rick Hensley is happy to have the new business, "It's a beautiful venue and I think you will be huge hit." Marion Councilwoman Ann Harkey agreed saying, "I am so happy for you two and for us to have this in our county," she added. "You work so hard and it shows." 

Patrick's parents, Dr. George and Joyce Ellis, have seen the couple's dedication and couldn't be more pleased with the outcome. "We are so proud of both of them," said George. Before launching head first into creating a new business,—while having full-time jobs—the couple took the Growing Entrepreneurs Marion Program that guides potential business owners though an 8-week course on setting up and operating a business. "I'm excited to have a new GEM family member," said GEM alumni Emily Causey who owns and operates Mica Town Brewery and a staunch advocate of the business-building program. "The idea of you write the check and let someone else worry about the stress is unique in our area." 

"If anyone can make it work, it's Lisa," cheered Old Fort native and Marion Business Association Director Freddie Killough. "They worked day after day in the rain and put their heart into it. I am so proud of you!" Chamber Director Steve Bush echoed Killough's confidence, "You've done a fantastic job on this property, the house is amazing, and If I have any say, my daughter would be getting married here." 

There are several packages from which to choose and they can work up a quote based on your unique needs. 

The Pond at Laurel Cove is located at 1718 Bat Cave Road in Old Fort, North Carolina. Visit their website at or call them at 828.442.8631 to start planning your perfect day!

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