I recently became engaged and my fiancee and I are trying to plan things early even though the wedding isn't until September/October 2011. We live in Marquette, MI and really want to marry up here. We've thought about an outdoor wedding because obviously, Marquette is gorgeous! But being a beautiful area goes hand-in-hand with extremely unpredictable weather. So if we wanted an in-door wedding, but not in a church because we don't want a very religious ceremony...Where do we go in Marquette?
There is also a place on Washington St, right down town about the little shops - I had a friend who had a beautiful wedding there about 4-5 years ago - I can't remember the name.....The Tabernacle or Citadel or something like that? Your location will mostly be dictated by how many guests you have so defining you list as early as possible helps. I had mine outside on some private property Labor Day weekend last year - and I completely understand the stress behind worrying about weather, specially during fall in MQT. Just an FYI- if you are interested in the Up Front I would talk to them ASAP they tend to book up years in advance being the only location right on the water with a balcony.
All the ideas given so far are great ones! The UpFront is awesome-- our reception was there, but I know another couple who had their ceremony there & it was beautiful. Another one you might want to consider are the huge banquet rooms at NMU. I have been to receptions there which were pretty big, but they can open or close dividers depending on how many people you have, I think. Also, The rooms could easily accommodate lots of seats for the ceremony and probably be "flipped" for the reception-- or the ceremony may be in one banquet room, with the reception in another... Either way it seems like it would be a pretty flexible space. I don't remember which building they're in, but I believe the rooms were named after the Great Lakes. Good luck!!