Thank you so much for clicking on Our Story. We think it is important to know the people behind the venue. We all pour our hearts and souls into Avalon Legacy Ranch every day. Nothing is more important to us than providing the most beautiful and perfect setting for the bride and groom and their families.
My name is Debra Ladd. I was born in Happy, Texas and have lived in Austin, Oklahoma City, England, and Atlanta, Georgia, as well as McKinney.
As the owner of Avalon Legacy Ranch, I come from a long line of pioneers, people who risked everything to create a better life for others. That legacy has been passed down through generations of my family, and has become my legacy, and the legacy of Avalon Legacy Ranch. We hope you will make Avalon Legacy Ranch a part of your legacy as well. Avalon Legacy Ranch is for dreamers. Dreamers who know that setting is everything, and no one can tell them no, but themselves.
I often have people ask me if I have always wanted to own a wedding venue. The truth is the thought never crossed my mind until the day that I drove onto the property that would become Avalon Legacy Ranch. I never thought that I would be blessed enough to create a place of beauty for so many to enjoy.
Five years ago, after working as a public school teacher for 12 years, I was ready to retire and live “happily ever after” on my ranch outside of Happy, Texas. My youngest two children were not thrilled with that plan. They wanted to stay in McKinney, My son asked me to come see an old industrial house on a 25 acres property outside of McKinney, TX.
None of us could believe there really could be a place with 25 acres just outside of the McKinney city limits. None of us would have ever imagined the property would be ours and it would completely change our lives. I didn’t go there that day expecting my life to change, but change my life it did. As we walked around the property, the idea of Avalon Legacy Ranch began to develop. I realized if I sold everything I owned, I could turn the property into the most unique, beautiful wedding venue in North Texas, and by God’s grace and with the help of so many others, my dream became a reality.
Selling farmland that had been in the family for almost 100 years was one of the hardest decisions I have ever made, Yet, as I prayed, I was reminded everyone of my ancestors had left their home to start a new life. As I prayed, I felt like God gave me the scripture from Psalms 22, “The poor will be fed, and generations will say, ‘The Lord has done it.'” The owners accepted 4 other bids that fell through before ours was accepted. Nine months after I first bid on the property, my offer was accepted.
The repairs were extensive and we refused to book a single event until we had new decks, outdoor pergolas, the chapel and the gardens completed. Along the way I was blessed with the help of Cas Franklin, an international awarded landscape architect, who designed all of our gardens. He created a magical setting as you can see in all of our pictures.
Now, five years later, we have hosted over 300 weddings, numerous church, school and business events, received multiple awards, and been featured in wedding magazines and blogs. In addition, we have blessed to donate money to the Samaritan Inn, to orphanages in India and Africa to fulfill our vision, “The poor will be fed.” We have been blessed enough to win awards that only the top 5% of wedding venues win and have on top of all that, we have made thousands of new friends along the way
Best of all, we have had the honor of being a place where brides and grooms begin their legacies. Where families have come together to celebrate the new and the old in an environment that is elegant and inviting.
Three generations of women work at Avalon Legacy Ranch: My mom, my daughter-in-law, and myself. I cannot express the great honor we feel when you choose Avalon Legacy Ranch for your wedding and how seriously we take that commitment. We tell our brides, “We care more about your wedding than you do!” We know that that is an extraordinary statement, but it’s one we prove every wedding. We will be here for you. Your Legacy is Our Legacy.