• Peggy Van Wagoner

Welcome to the Inisfree Knot

I am so excited to finally start our blog about Inisfree Farm. My kids had been suggesting for awhile that I write a blog … but when you are in the middle of running a business, construction projects and all the many details involved, time is very limited and quite honestly - so is your energy.

Bruce and Peggy

What about the name? Many guests ask about the name “Inisfree” and its meaning. The farm was already named when we made the purchase. We loved the name and learned “Inisfree” was adopted from “The Quiet Man” - the 1952 movie featuring John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara. “Inisfree” was their idyllic place of refuge from the city. The name means “land between the waters” which was not only appropriate for our location but also romantic and beautiful. A perfect name for an event venue and Bed and Breakfast.

It was by chance that we found Inisfree. A transfer landed us in Chicago from Michigan in 2004. After 12 years in Chicago, we decided it was time to move to a much warmer climate. Although we loved our village, friends we made and our home, we really missed the midwest. A few years of Florida's heat and humidity confirmed we did not want to remain year round.

August 2016, we were in Chicago on business. As I sat in a hotel room one afternoon waiting for Bruce to return from his office, I casually flipped through Michigan real estate listings. There was Inisfree. We knew we needed to visit so flights were rescheduled and we drove to Michigan. Labor Day Weekend - September 2016 we closed on Inisfree Farm.

While sitting on the verandah and celebrating our purchase, we suddenly realized we had no idea what our plans were. Here we were with a 30 acre farm in SW Michigan and no idea what we wanted to do. All we know is from the first moment we drove onto the property, we were “home”.

Looking at the magnificent structure of the Inisfree Barn, circa 1893, it was imperative whatever we decided, we would preserve and share Inisfree with others. As I looked at the timbers and thought about the amount of physical labor, perseverance and determination it took to build such a magnificent building, the workmanship and diligence required is still amazing. Some of the timbers in the barn maintain the bark - and all the timbers for the barn, farmhouse, henhouse and outhouse - was milled on the property. As an advocate in preserving any historical structures, - I think we all have a history worth preserving.

Interior of Historic Barn - circa 1893

Inisfree Farm, LLC was formed and our Grand Opening for the venue - Inisfree Farm Event Venue - was Saturday, July 14, 2019. The same weekend, we were asked to be part of the garden tour for the South Haven Garden Club. To my surprise, approximately 500 guests visited Inisfree Farm. That was the start of something great.

To date, we have hosted over 100 events - weddings, pop-up weddings, fundraisers, anniversaries, family reunions, garden tours and friend's get aways.

We are extremely grateful for the continued growth and blessings since our opening. Just a few months ago, we completed a major expansion of our Bed and Breakfast. We were also invited into membership of Select Registry, Distinguished Inns of North America. Our Bed and Breakfast offers ten luxury suites - all impeccably furnished for ultimate comfort and is open year round. We also offer Pop-Up Weddings year round. Our main venue however, is closed during the winter.

The Inisfree Knot After researching about how to name a blog, it was apparent the name “Inisfree” should be present. The Knot - was significant - as it connects both the venue and the Bed and Breakfast together - symbolic of the Irish Celtic Knot.

We hope you will enjoy The Inisfree Knot as we share more about the happenings at Inisfree, discoveries and opportunities we offer now and in the future.

Fáilte - Bruce and Peggy

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