A charming, historic setting for weddings
By Sarah Carter Levitch
Photos provided by Peterson-Dumesnil House
Built in 1869 as a summer home for a local tobacco merchant, the Peterson-Dumesnil holds a rich history and unique character. The original family resided in the Crescent Hill home for 80 years before selling it to the board of education, who utilized the space as a teacher’s lounge. In 1982, the board of education declared the house a surplus, so the neighborhood raised funds to buy the property.
Since then, the P-D House has served the local community as a versatile event space. No stranger to hosting, the house saw the weddings of many teachers when the board of educators owned the space, a tradition that continued over when people came to the house asking if they could get married there.
Designed in an Italian villa style, the house exudes southern charm with a 16-foot wrap-around porch, a mahogany staircase that spirals up to the third-floor cupola, 14-foot ceilings and lush, diverse gardens. We spoke with Melissa Mershon, development director, who shared that on the property, there is one of the oldest Ginkgo trees in Kentucky, over 150 years old and 28 feet in circumference.
These distinguishing qualities have made the Peterson-Dumesnil House a storybook-esque setting for weddings. Mershon noted, “It’s so charming. People feel like they have stepped back in time with all of the modern amenities. It has that feeling of being in a special place.” The house also provides couples with a variety of choices for the ceremony and reception site, Mershon explained, making each wedding at the P-D House unique. “We do a lot of outdoor weddings. People get married everywhere, from the porch that can accommodate almost 130 people, to our event garden that can house a 225 person wedding, to the intimate gardens for a small wedding.”
On the day of, Mershon informed that the wedding party has access to the entire house and grounds, commenting, “brides like to come early with their wedding party, and the grooms and their groomsmen are at the opposite side of the house. They can all get dressed and celebrate with champagne while getting ready.” However, the house itself is not all that’s included, as Mershon added, “another thing brides like about our home is our catering manager, Clementine Events and Catering, provides full-service catering. They assist the couple in selecting a menu, rentals, music, flowers, tenting and decoration. Steve Clements, the owner, is a professional and executes gorgeous events.”
For most couples who get married at the house, the wedding day is not the end of their celebration. Mershon noted that the P-D House hosts many anniversary parties, whether planned or more spontaneous: “I always walk up to couples to introduce myself and ask them what they’re doing here. They’ll say, ‘we got married here five years ago, and we’re taking anniversary photos,’ or there might be a couple on a blanket with a bottle of champagne celebrating their anniversary. There’s undoubtedly a magical energy throughout the house and gardens, making it an idyllic place for these romantic occasions. Not only do people get married at the P-D house, but they also come back to the P-D house.”
Peterson-Dumesnil House is a proud member of Inclusive Kentucky Weddings.
301 S Peterson Ave.
Louisville, KY 40206