Weddings

Break out of the ballroom and experience the freshwater elegance of hosting your celebration at Great Lakes Aquarium!

We offer space for indoor and outdoor wedding ceremonies, room for seated receptions for up to 160 guests, or strolling receptions for 160+ guests, and a sparkling 24-foot water wall as a backdrop for your first dance.

Great Lakes Aquarium’s rental options are organized as packages, providing you with the right space and furnishings to match your ideal wedding.

Interested in stopping by for a tour? Submit a “Wedding Information Request” below to check on availability!

Full Facility Rental Package

Circular dinner tables decorated for a wedding reception among aquarium exhibits

Dine alongside the Baptism River, witness stunning panoramic harbor views, carry cocktails through a shipwreck, and dance below a 24-foot water wall. The full facility package provides flexibility, immersion and entertainment as the only package to allow exclusive access to the full Aquarium exhibit floor, during and after-hours!

Featuring:

  • Stunning views of the Duluth Harbor and Aerial Lift Bridge
  • A dance floor in front of the 24-foot water wall
  • Private access to the full exhibit floor
  • Customizable SCUBA Show & animal encounters (upon request)
  • Hands-on experiences at Ancient Seas, Moon Jellies and/or 9,000 gallon Sturgeon touchpools
  • Seated reception for 160 guests among the exhibits (or strolling reception for 160+ guests)
  • Minimal decorations required; just add your personal touch with centerpieces or table favors!
  • Outdoor fire pits and firewood (weather-pending)

Rental Includes:

  • 20 5-foot round tables (seats 6-8 each)
  • 120 basic black chairs (additional chairs available upon request)
  • 6-foot rectangular tables for DJ, gifts, cake, catering and head table
  • A/V including wireless mic, mic stand, 2 Bluetooth speakers, podium, and Smartboard access
  • Self-serve coat room
  • Private, separate prep rooms for wedding parties, pre-ceremony and throughout the evening
  • Private, separate prep room for caterer
  • Private ceremony space at any time of day in our outdoor beer garden, 2nd floor Discovery Center (max capacity of 80 guests) or after 6 p.m. in the lobby, or on the exhibit floor.

Pricing: $3,500

Discovery Center & St. Louis River Rental Packages

With floor to ceiling windows overlooking the Duluth Harbor, both the Discovery Center and St. Louis River exhibit are a stunning setting for intimate wedding celebrations.

Capacity: Up to 100 guests

Timing: The Discovery Center is available for daytime and evening rentals, while St. Louis River is available after 6:00 p.m.

Rental Includes:

  • 5-foot round or 6-foot rectangular tables (seat 6 – 8 each)
  • 80 basic black chairs (additional chairs available)
  • 6-foot rectangular tables for DJ, gifts, cake, catering and head table
  • Separate space for out-of-sight catering prep
  • A/V including wireless mic, mic stand, 2 Bluetooth speakers, podium, and Smartboard access
  • Optional: Add on lobby or outdoor beer garden set up for $250 per space

Pricing:

Rental Packages
(Under 100 guests)
Daytime Rental Price (Rental Only)Daytime Rental Price (Admission Included)Evening Rental Price
Discovery Center Rental –
1-40 guests
$300$500$600
Discovery Center Rental –
40-80 guests
$600$800$1,200
St. Louis River Rental – 80-100 guests (Available after 6 p.m.)N/AN/A$1,800

Ceremony-Only Rental Packages

Enjoy one of a variety of locations, and treat your guests to free exploration throughout the Aquarium after your ceremony! Ceremony-only rentals include 6 hours of flexible ceremony time, plus unlimited exhibit exploration time following the main event.

Or, select any of these ceremony options as an addition to any Full Facility reception package (details above) at no extra cost. Ceremony options are not included in Discovery Center packages (ceremony options may be added for $250).

Outdoor Harborside Ceremony

Gather in our outdoor beer garden space, overlooking the Duluth Harbor and Aerial Lift Bridge.

Capacity: Up to 160 guests

Timing: Six-hour rentals available during Aquarium business hours*

Price: $800

Discovery Center Ceremony

With floor to ceiling windows overlooking the Harbor and Bayfront Festival Park, the Discovery Center is a lovely setting for intimate wedding celebrations.

Capacity: Up to 80 guests

Timing: Six-hour rentals available during Aquarium business hours*

Price: $800

Water Wall Lobby Ceremony

Say your vows in front of Great Lakes Aquarium’s stunning 24-foot glass water wall

Capacity: Up to 120 guests

Timing: Six-hour rentals available after daily business hours*

Price: $800

Elopement-Only Rental Package

Enjoy two hours of Aquarium time along with admission for a maximum of 10 guests (wedding couple included.)

Capacity: Up to 10 guests

Timing: Two-hour rentals available during or after daily business hours*

Price: $250

* Aquarium business hours are 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. daily.

Optional Add-On Services

Catering

Great Lakes Aquarium offers you choices when it comes to catering.  Our preferred caterer is Black Woods Banquet and Catering. However, additional licensed caterers are welcome with approval!

Bar Service

Great Lakes Aquarium provides exclusive bar service for all on-site events serving alcoholic beverages.

  • Standard bar service: $200 (beverages not included)
  • Champagne Toast: $22 – $95 / bottle
  • Security (required with bar): $150

SCUBA Show

Looking to add a stunning surprise to your evening event? Schedule SCUBA divers to wow your guests in the Isle Royale exhibit. Ask about the divers feeding fish, wearing otter onesies, or hosting rock-paper-scissors contests and more!

Price: $150

Animal Encounters

Get up close and personal with the Aquarium’s animal ambassadors! Encounter animals are subject to change. Please reach out to events@glaquarium.org to inquire which animals are currently able to visit!

  • Roaming animal encounters: $50/half hour

Touchpools

Sign up to safely touch a moon jelly at one of our after-hours touchpools! Touchpool options include Ancient Seas (featuring sea stars, anemones, abalones and prawns), Moon Jellies, and Sturgeon.

Price: $100 (includes two of three touchpools with the options of 30 minutes at Ancient Seas, 30 minutes at Moon Jellies, and/or 1 full hour at the Sturgeon touchpool)