Some people look at a building or a blue print and imagine a complex project that’s not directly in evidence.
Donna Tiemeyer of the The Waterfalls Wedding Venue at the former Farragut Public School is definitely one of those people.
What was used for classroom and gymnasium space has been dramatically transformed into apartments, an event space and a wedding venue to rival any other.
The project began with the purchase of the property back in 2016.
Tiemeyer said she looked at the space and had immediate ideas for what she wanted to do with it.
Beginning with what became 15 units of apartments, Tiemeyer said she had no problem with the idea of keeping some of the school feel in the hallways, but said she definitely wanted the apartments themselves to have a comfortable home feel and not look like a school space.
This was accomplished by putting up walls in front of the existing concrete and then building an environment that carried a “wow” factor.
Mission accomplished.
Tiemeyer said the trial and error aspect of it came from her background, not as an apartment person, but as someone who had experience in improving houses for resale.
Once the first apartment was done, however, the plan for the other apartments came together pretty quickly.
The key was to take advantage of what each space had to offer.
In the science room, Tiemeyer saw an opportunity to change a darkroom space into a master bathroom with a large walk-in shower.
In the band/choir rooms, the high ceilings provided the perfect place for a loft apartment feel.
“It all depended on what
was there to work with,” she said.
Renting the apartments has not been an issue at all.
Tiemeyer said she most of the apartments rented before construction began and still receives calls daily about apartment availability.
It’s been so popular that Tiemeyer said she’s starting another apartment project soon at the old Chantry Elementary School in Malvern.

Tiemeyer said she feels good about the idea of providing affordable upscale housing to retain population which can support the local economy and school system.
The apartments are open to all age groups and, as such, are attractive to young families.
That influx of people has a direct effect on the cities and schools.
An increase in population could mean more funds for the city of Farragut to repair streets, for instance.
The school tie in at the Farragut site is big too as tennants of the apartments and residents of the community can send their kids to school on busses which already arrive at the old Farragut school anyways.
Turning to the wedding venue aspect of the three-tier operation, the re-imagination of the space included a waterfall, hence the name, and the idea of opening a balcony space that had been long closed at the school.
Those effects along with a curved stairway give curb appeal for any bride and groom.
The first wedding event has already taken place at the Farragut site.
Many more are scheduled.
The main hold up was getting the space completed so that prospective couples would not have to guess as to what features the venue space would have.
“I didn’t want to advertise it until we were actually done,” said Tiemeyer.
There have been 12 weddings booked since the wedding  venue was completed.
The third aspect of the operation at the old Farragut school will also have a major community impact by providing an affordable space for events.
The event center, which was the lunch room of the old school, was recently utilized  for a family reunion.
Upcoming events include the Democratic Caucuses in February, a Hamburg Hospital fundraiser, and the Sidney High School prom.
Tiemeyer said she hopes to book company Christmas parties yet this year.
“The possibilities are endless for what you could do in that event center,” she said.
It’s only possible if you can imagine it. Tiemeyer can help you find that imagination for an event.
Don’t believe.
Just go to the old Farragut school and take a look around.  To say it has a different feel would be underselling—by a lot.

The Waterfalls Wedding Venue is located at 907 Hartford Street in Farragut. For more information, search the business name on Facebook or call at 712-370-2004.