Ten Tips For Choosing Your Wedding Venue

Starting the search for a wedding venue is not an easy task. It’s the location that will set the tone for your entire evening, and can seem overwhelming and difficult to take it all in.

Start your search early. This allows you to have a better chance of finding a location that meets all your needs while being available on your desired dates! Make sure to explore various venues ahead of time to see what will bring your vision to life!

When focusing on choosing a wedding venue, there are many things to keep in mind and take note of. For that reason, we’ve put together a list of 10 tips for you to keep in mind while looking for a venue, and what River Oaks has to offer. Make sure to check out our wedding page for more information!

1. Determine your budget or optimal cost for your wedding venue

When choosing your wedding venue, it’s important to determine your wedding budget and decide what percentage can be allocated to your venue. The budget and cost for your wedding is placed at the top because by prioritizing your budget you’ll be able to find a venue that fits your financial plan and gives you an evening to remember! When looking at different venues, it’s important to know that some venues include essential services in their pricing while others don’t. Also, it’s good to note that sometimes off season weddings and weddings that don’t fall on peak days can give you a lower price tag.

At River Oaks, we are forward about our pricing and open about what is included in the overall cost. We have a wedding guide for brides and grooms to use to determine if our venue correlates with your budget and for you to get a snapshot of what we have to offer. If you’re interested in learning more, please click on our wedding page and contact us for information!

2. Availability for your desired wedding date

If you have a set date in which you want to get married, make sure to begin your search for a venue early. Many venues book up quickly, which limits your options as time looms closer to the date you wish to get married.

If you have flexibility for your date, starting your venue search early gives you plenty of options– and it means you can choose a date that aligns with the venue availability. Overall, whether fixed or flexible with your wedding date, it’s a great idea to start looking sooner rather than later. It gives you more options and increases your chances of finding the perfect venue for your special day.

Start your venue search with River Oaks! Click on the wedding page and contact us to set up a time to visit our location and see for yourself how we can bring your vision to life!

3. Match your venue with your wedding theme

When you look for a wedding venue, it’s important to look for a space that will match your wedding theme. For example, if you are looking to have a rustic wedding, it might not work in an elegant hotel. Also, many venues have decorations you can use for your special day, so make sure the decorations they supply are to your liking… and If they aren’t check to see if they allow you to bring your own decorations!

At River Oaks, our event center is located adjacent to a golf course and rests right above the Mississippi River Valley. We offer decorations for you to use for your special day, and we are very open to working with you to make sure everything matches your vision. Check out our wedding page to learn more and contact us for a viewing!

4. Determine the size of your wedding guest list

Before looking at venues, it’s a great idea to determine how large your wedding will be. Reason being, if you have a smaller sized wedding at a larger venue, it may feel empty. If you have a larger wedding, you will need to make sure you don’t exceed the maximum capacity for the wedding venue. Having an estimate for wedding size will help narrow down venues that will work for you and your wedding!

At River Oaks, our outdoor wedding location and indoor reception venue hold up to 200 guests. If you want to learn more, check out our wedding page to see if we are a great fit for you!

5. For outdoor venues, is there a back up plan for bad weather?

If you are looking to plan an outdoor wedding, it’s important to ask about back up options and plans for inclement weather. Make sure to look into the back up options that the venue provides, and make sure the plan aligns with what you want for your wedding. This will ensure that you have a perfect and seamless celebration, no matter the weather.

At River Oaks, our weddings are outdoors, located next to the 18th hole on the golf course and in view of the Mississippi River Valley below. Because weather is not controllable, we are able to transition the outdoor wedding indoors into the 4,500 square feet event space. Are you interested in learning more about this process? Check out our wedding page and contact us for more information.

6. What amenities are available at the venue?

When you look at different venues, make sure to pay attention to the amenities that are available at the venue (and check if they’re an additional cost). Make sure there is plenty of parking availability, event coordination, and see if they provide tables, chairs, and linens. Check to see if there’s bathroom access at the venue (some barns and beach weddings don’t provide this).

River Oaks is home to both a golf course and event center, and has many amenities for you to utilize on your wedding day. We have parking, a great event team, and we provide tables, chairs, and linens for your use. You will also have access to bathrooms on site, a menu from our chef you can utilize, and in the event center we have a bar ready for you and your guests to enjoy. Click on our wedding page to learn more and set up a time to view our space and the amenities we have available!

7. Do The logistics match what you envision for your wedding?

During your visit with the venue event staff, make sure to discuss the different logistical aspects of the wedding day. Things like how long you’ll have your rental, the set up and tear down times, curfew and noise restraints, and any other restrictions or rules that are imposed by the venue. Other logistics to look into is the availability of taxis in the area and whether or not the venue is near any lodging for out of town guests. This will help make sure your wedding day is smooth and seamless from beginning to end!

At River Oaks, our wedding packages include tear down and set up of tables and chairs. Set up of decor varies, depending on what you choose to use for your wedding. Check with one of our event staff members to learn more about the logistics of using our event space at River Oaks!

8. Vendor options at the wedding venue

While looking at different wedding venues, it’s important to note that some venues will allow you to use your own vendors while others want you to use vendors they have contracts with. If you want to choose your own vendors, make sure to choose a venue that will allow you to do so.

River Oaks has a list of preferred vendors for you to choose from– made up of the best vendors the East Metro has to offer. For food, we have an in-house event chef on staff you can opt to make the food for the reception, which is a great bonus for events at our location. Check out our list of preferred vendors on the wedding guide found here!

9. What does the wedding venue have to offer for accessibility for disabilities?

If you know either you or any guests in attendance will need additional accommodations or accessibility for disabilities, it’s a great idea to ask the venue to see what types of accommodations they have in place. Accessibility of entrances, exits, elevators (if needed), bathrooms, parking, and seating options are some examples to look into.

River Oaks is accessible for those in attendance, but we encourage you to reach out to us on our wedding page to make sure that we have the accommodations you or your guests will need. We strive to make sure everyone has the best experience possible, and will make sure that you and your guests’ needs are heard and accommodated to.

10. Check out the customer reviews

One last tip for anyone looking for a wedding venue is to do your research on what people are saying about the venue. Reviews typically provide an unbiased approach on the venue, and you might learn information about aspects of the venue you haven’t even thought of. Take note of both the positive and negative reviews on third party sites, and go with your gut!

Experience Eagles Bar & Grill

A Restaurant that’s a Hidden Treasure with Excellent Service

Are you looking for a local restaurant with a view that’s second to none, a hidden treasure with phenomenal food and top-notch customer service?

Eagles Bar & Grill, located at River Oaks Golf Course and Event Center, is the overlooked gem that is the place to go. Overlooking the 18-hole course that rests within the Mississippi River Valley, Eagles Bar & Grill has a great view, great service and great food.

When you walk into the bar and grill, in good weather you will find that you have the option to sit either inside or outside. Sitting inside is nice when you need a nice place to cool off after a hot round of golf, or if you wish to have a nice, intimate setting to dine. Sitting outside allows you to get nice views and enjoy the ambiance of the stringed lights as the sun slowly falls down over the horizon.

Whether you’re looking for a place to relax after golfing at the River Oaks Golf Course, planning a fun night out with friends, or looking for a place to bring the family, Eagles Bar & Grill is a great option for you.

When to Visit Eagles Bar & Grill Restaurant

The Summer Grill Menu is served daily (weather permitting) from 10:30 a.m. Also, we are always open every Thursday, Friday and Saturday evening from 4:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. It’s perfect to head to the driving range after work, hit some balls, then head on in to eat some of our fine cuisine.

If you’re golfing, it’s a great idea to take a look at the Quick Golf Menu. You’ll be able to have a quick bite to eat before your tee time, after, or even during your golfing experience, depending on what you prefer! There are great options for golfers to enjoy.

The Summer Grill Menu at Eagles Bar & Grill

The summer menu is the heart of the Eagles Bar & Grill and is what has people continuing to come back for more. American cuisine in a comfortable, scenic setting that tastes great and is a wonderful way to dine out during the summer. It’s a great place to go whether you’re golfing or not. Come on in, sit down, and grab a bite from this tasteful menu!

Some items on the menu include:


The Quick Golf Menu at Eagles Bar & Grill

The Quick Golf Menu exists to allow golfers to grab quick meals before, during or after their round of golf. Eagles Bar & Grill offers this menu so golfers can have the best experience possible while out on the course. You can grab something off the menu within minutes, making sure you don’t have to worry about missing or being late for your tee time. You’re able to order something from this menu on the 8th hole and have it by the 10th, and is a perfect way to get some grub while you’re playing early morning golf.

The items on the menu include:

The Drink Menu at Eagles Bar & Grill

After a round of golf, it’s nice to kick back and relax at the fully stocked bar in Eagles Bar & Grill. To top off the great American Style cuisine, it’s a good idea to wash it down and relax with an item from the drink menu. The bar has domestic beer, premium craft beer, and many seltzers to choose from. To top it off, red and white wine options are available for any kind of taste as well.

The items on the menu include:

Experience the Local Restaurant for Yourself

Experience Eagles Bar & Grill for yourself! Whether it’s a date night, a dinner out with friends, or a family affair, they have great views, food and brews for you!

Do you want to plan a fun date night or a night out with friends? Have a nice dinner after hitting the driving range, then relax while sitting out on the patio as the sun starts to fall down over the horizon. The lights strung across the patio add to the comforting atmosphere just as things start to get dark.

Make it a family evening out at the golf course! After a round of golf, everyone can kick back and relax with some good food, some cold drinks, and a welcoming atmosphere for everyone.

If you’re planning on golfing here at River Oaks Golf Course, it’s a must to stop by Eagles Bar & Grill to finish out your evening. We are looking forward to seeing you soon!

Check out our website here for more info about Eagles Bar & Grill!

Summer Grill Menu is here!

It finally feels like summer is here, and with that comes our summer menu and delicious meals on our beautiful patio overlooking the golf course and Mississippi River Valley! Our summer grill menu is served daily starting at 10:30 a.m, weather permitting, and every Thursday, Friday and Saturday evening from 4:30-8:30 p.m.


Join us for our Easter Brunch!

Join us for our Easter Brunch on April 9th! This is the perfect way to celebrate the holiday with your family and friends. Call us now to make your reservation and secure your spot!


Golf is almost here! Are you ready?

Golf leagues, lessons and memberships

Whether you are a league-regular or new to golf leagues at River Oaks Golf Course, our many leagues are a great way to get out on the course, meet new people and improve your game! We have the perfect league for everyone, but leagues fill up fast so make sure to secure your spot now!



Are you new to golf? Sign up now for our golf lessons! Lessons are geared towards anybody who wants to learn the basics of golf in a non-competitive and friendly environment. Instructors will go through the basics of the highlighted aspect of the game each lesson. Find more information and sign up now on our website.



Did you know that all members get 10% off all golf shop merchandise, 14 day advanced reservations and 10% off items in The Eagles Bar & Grill? Don’t wait, get your River Oaks membership now!



Coming up at River Oaks!

Don’t miss out on these great events coming up at River Oaks!


Friday Night Signature Dinners

Join us at Eagles Bar & Grill on November 4th, November 18th or December 16th for one of our Friday Night Signature Dinners! Chef Isaac has created a delicious menu that features items such as a Signature Fish Fry, Marinated Ribeye Steak and Firecracker Burger!




Sweet Keys Dueling Pianos

Join us on November 12th for our fan-favorite dueling pianos event performed by Sweet Keys. This event brings music to life in a fun and exciting way. With dinner included, bring your adult friends & family for an evening of creative fun. Starting at $50 plus tax per individual or save money by bringing a group of 8 for $325 plus tax.

Social starting at 5:30 p.m.

Dinner starting at 6:00 p.m.

Dueling Pianos from 7:00 – 10:00 p.m



Santa Brunch

Information will be coming out about it in the next few weeks, and reservations will open November 1st.


We can’t wait to see you at these great events at River Oaks Golf Course & Event Center!




Summer round-up at River Oaks Golf Course & Event Center

Don’t miss out on all of the great things happening this summer at River Oaks Golf Course & Event Center!


Our Event Center provides all the amenities needed for hosting a variety of indoor and outdoor events, such as weddings, anniversaries, Bar Mitzvahs, birthdays, graduations, rehearsal dinners, retirements, baby and bridal showers, holiday get-togethers, quinceañeras and more!

Check out our 2022 Event Guide

Check out our 2022 Wedding Guide

Grill and Patio

Patio season is finally here! Enjoy your meal cooked by Chef Isaac on our beautiful patio overlooking the golf course! We have made some great new updates to our patio that you won’t want to miss!

Practice Range Powered by Toptracer

Toptracer Range is back and better than ever at River Oaks! We are so excited to have you all back for a second year of our practice range being powered by Toptracer. With the app, track your swing and compete weekly to top the leaderboards in our pro shop! Purchase your small, medium or large bucket of balls and hit the range!

Junior Golfers

We have great opportunities for junior golfers this summer! We still have space available in our junior golf league on Wednesdays and Thursdays and in our junior lessons! Space is filling up fast, so find more information and sign up now on our website!

Beginning at 6:30 p.m. each night, juniors and any adult accompanying them pay $5 for as many holes of golf as they can play! Availability is limited, so call the golf shop at (651) 438-2121 x 1 to reserve your tee time!

Junior Leagues
Junior Lessons

Golf Shop Merchandise

Our golf shop is fully stocked with whatever you need to hit the course this season! Stop by next time you are at River Oaks and check it out!

Golf Course Opens Saturday!

It is finally here! The course is reopening on SATURDAY April 2nd for walking only!

We will allow carts beginning April 9th!

Looking to warm up? The practice range will also be open!

Make your tee time on our website now to be one of the first ones back out on the course!

Make your tee time here!


Minnesota Golf Course Gift Cards | River Oaks Golf Course & Event Center

Give the Gift of Golf this Holiday Season with a River Oaks Gift Card!

Gift Cards are good for all goods and services at our club, excluding private lessons. Buy your gift card on our website now! Gift cards are electronic and will be sent via email.


Looking to get your holiday shopping done early this year? You can purchase River Oaks Gift Cards from the comfort of your home! It is the perfect gift for the golfer in your life! Purchase your holiday gift card on our website store now or by clicking here!


This winter is making us dream of warmer days! Are you? If you just can’t wait for next year’s golf season, buy a gift card now to get ready! They are the perfect holiday gift or a great treat for yourself! 
Scramble Golf Tournament Near Me | River Oaks Golf Course & Event Center in Cottage Grove, MN

Sign up now for the Big Cup Scramble at River Oaks

2021 Big Cup Scramble at River Oaks


Pick your own team 4 Person Scramble with optional Skins Game and Players Pool!


Sunday September 26th, 8:00 am Shotgun
Cost is $100 for non-members, $75 for members
Includes 18 Holes of Golf, Cart, Range Balls, Lunch, Awards and Prize Money
Three Divisions (based on lowest handicapped player): Handicap Index 7.9 or lower, Handicap Index 8.0-15.9 and Handicap Index 16.0 or higher. Players with no handicap will play in lowest index.
Winning results based on gross team scores in all three divisions
Register on our website. Registration is due September 19th, so sign up now!