Independence Grove – Libertyville, IL

Independence Grove is a nature preserve located in Libertyville, Illinois. The premier location for outdoor family gatherings, this land boasts a whole host of recreational options, from fishing in the lake, to hiking, to eating at the Independence Grove restaurant, called The Café. Independence Grove rules for grilling, fishing, and boating can be found on the website.


A beautiful outdoor location wrapping around a sparkling lake makes this scenic preservation the perfect location for an outdoor wedding. Brides who are looking for a rustic, Chicagoland wedding will be pleased to know that Independence Grove has several different venues available, each one unique and versatile. An Independence Grove wedding is the nature lover’s dream!


Glowing wedding reviews of the Independence Grove venue can be found on Yelp and The Knot, allowing potential brides to get a better idea of the experience they will have when working with Events at Independence Grove. Because wedding venue cost is so important, brides will also be pleased with the competitive wedding prices at Independence Grove.


The land that is now Independence Grove was once nothing more than a large, empty quarry. The Libertyville community began plans for reclaiming the land in 1990, and by 2001 the preservation was open to the public. The lake was man-made, with careful planning needed to create enough vegetation within to allow a suitable habitat for marine life.


History buffs will be interested in the supposedly haunted gate near Independence Grove. While several different stories circulate among locals, the gate is said to have long ago guarded either a girl’s school or an asylum, and was the scene of grisly murders at either such place. Regardless of which story people believe, the history of Independence Grove is sure to be interesting to visitors.

Audubon Hall

This venue provides the perfect setting for an indoor wedding reception at Independence Grove. The hall blends wonderfully with the natural surroundings of the preservation due to its stonework and cedar construction. Large windows allow wedding guests to enjoy picturesque views of the surrounding nature preserve, including the Independence Grove beach, lake, and marina. Wedding pictures at Independence Grove’s Audubon Hall will highlight the surrounding natural beauty, as the venue is located on the peak of the preservation.


Audubon Hall can accommodate up to 350 guests for a sit-down dinner and up to 500 guests for a cocktail-style reception. Indoor and outdoor cocktail spaces are available at this venue, allowing the guests a place to mingle as they wait for the bride and groom to arrive.

North Bay Pavilion

For a more rustic-style event, brides have the option of a ceremony or reception lakeside! Independence Grove’s North Bay Pavilion is an open-air space with lovely views of the water. The cedar pavilion also has an adjacent uncovered area, making enough space for up to 500 guests!

Native Garden

For a romantic wedding ceremony, brides will love this gem! Lush greenery, flowering plants, and beautiful blooms are all part of the experience at this venue. Wedding photos at Independence Grove’s Native Garden are a dream when you consider the fountains, wrought-iron benches, and brick runway! The bride and groom can say “I do” either under a wooden pergola or beneath the beautiful gazebo in the garden.

Millennia Plaza

For an event under the stars, a reception at Independence Grove’s Millennia Plaza is perfection. The open space will dazzle the wedding party and guests alike with its views of the surrounding preservation. Brick-flooring with a pergola-covered entryway make this venue breathtaking.

Observation Deck

The Observation Deck at Independence Grove overlooks the pristine lake and is the perfect place for a cocktail hour or a wedding ceremony. This space can accommodate up to 180 wedding guests.


Events at Independence Grove is a company owned and operated by Catering By Michaels, thus all Independence Grove rentals will be catered by them. Catering By Michaels offers every option a bride could want for her wedding reception, including multi-course plated dinners, buffets, and passed hors d’oeuvres. Interactive food stations are a special treat offered by Michaels, providing a little something extra to impress wedding guests. Pricing of Independence Grove food varies depending on the bride’s specific choices, but the variety is so great that any bride will be sure to find something she is comfortable with.

Location and Contact

The preservation is located less than an hour from Chicago in Libertyville. The proximity to the city means the multiple venues on the property are convenient for both the bridal party and the wedding guests.


Open hours at Independence Grove are 6:30am to sunset. Directions to and a map of Independence Grove can be found on the preserve’s website: For more information about any of the venues, or for times when you can tour Independence Grove venues, contact Catering by Michaels at (847) 966-6555 or