So we have a winner. Church #2. Granted we can actually get ahold of them (I've been having issues with all sorts of people and places not returning phone calls lately. grrr), it's simply...well simple. i won't say perfect. but I love it.
I am a small person, even in the middle of the street I couldn't get far back enough for a good shot, but you get the idea. Say hello to fiance! =D
Just look at that lovely red brick. (I have a secret love for brick) It's 150 years old. Only 10 miles from the reception site, and close to the freeway. But if people so choose, there's also a very easy scenic route they can take. We haven't seen the inside (it was locked) but I'm going to optimistically assume that it has the same character as the outside and has been kept in just a good condition. It was hiding, just off a main "old town" street. Most of the buildings in the area are gold rush era. The church is on a super quiet, quaint little street (thanks to one end being blocked off from a main thoroughfare. must notify guests of this because google maps was not aware) surrounded by giant victorian homes.
AND just one block down is a fantastic chicago style pizza place that fiance and I love, which we're thinking would make an excellent spot for the rehearsal dinner. The decor is quite classy, moody lighting, brick walls (i know!), downtown chicago city-like feel inside.
Now our guests can choose a more historical locale to stay and visit, there are lots of lovely shops and restaurants and hotels right by the church, or they can stay in a more modern area by the reception site.
Also, I read a review of the church online and this lady said they got to use the church for FREE! We will definitely make a donation to the church since it's a historical landmark and all, but it definitely won't be anywhere close to the $750 requested by the other church.
So my momma is taking over as contact point since we are no longer in the area, and she can go visit the inside. She will use her jedi mind trick powers of negotiation. Seriously she's brilliant. I had a car disaster last year and so when we went to buy a used car last june, she talked the salesman down to 2/3 of the asking price! She can convince people to do just about anything.