Megan and Lewis’s North Carolina nuptials were a customized celebration of love, family and fun at the beautiful the Barn of Chapel Hill. The day, planned by Kast Events, fell on the Kentucky Derby with a timeline that hinged on the race happening half way through the cocktail hour. Mint juleps were served, festive attire encouraged and Wild Flora Farm graced every turn with stunning pink florals. Photographer Kasey Smith Creative was on hand to capture all the joy and details of the day in these lovely images.
What made the wedding special and unique?
From the groom: The goal is was to make the wedding special/memorable for us and our guests. From the ceremony to the cocktail hour to the reception. We thought “How do we make each part special?”
Ceremony – We both bring kids to this marriage and had them be part of the wedding. I came down the aisle first with the thought of as everyone else came down the aisle I would greet them at the front with a hug. Everyone had their own music to walk into. From the mom’s walking into Dancing Queen….Best Man and Matron of Honor coming into Lean on Me….the kids coming into ABC by the Jackson 5. We chose our own vows and had a pastor and good friend that brought a lot of energy to the ceremony.
Cocktail hour – We got married on May 4th. It was Kentucky Derby day and the whole timeline hinged on the race happening halfway through the Cocktail Hour. We had TVs brought in for everyone to watch. We encouraged people to wear hats and derbylike attire. I pre-made mint juleps for the bartenders to serve during the cocktail hour. A friend of mine grows mint in his back yard, so I used that for the juleps. The bride and groom were the first to arrive at the cocktail hour. Pictures happened before so we could enjoy the party.
Reception – instead of the traditional father/daughter and mother/son, we did a family dance with all the grandparents/parents/kids on the dance floor dancing to “We are Family” by Sister Sledge. My best man was a friend I served in Iraq with. When we got back from Iraq we got together and he brought a bottle of Hennessy Paradis that sells for $1,000. It had only been opened for his college graduation, and birth of his two kids. We toasted upon our return. I told Megan this story and she surprised me with my own bottle of Paradis. So, for the best man speech we opened my bottle and toasted.
Tell us about the gown and where/how she found it!
Simply Blush was the boutique store where the dress was found. Megan’s friend recommended it. Megan asked me what I wanted the gown to look like. I told she needed to love it first. Megan is fit and I told her to make sure and show it off, but not be risque. Ha!
What were some touches added to make the wedding personal?
The mint, the Hennessy, the walk up songs for the people in the wedding, the vows we chose. Megan and I kicked off the reception with a dual speech. We gave a two minute speech that touched on all the people in the room and how much they meant to us.
What was the most memorable part of the day?
The whole day was great but it might have been the 10 seconds after we walked back down the aisle to the cocktail hour where we were alone and then seeing all our friends and family join us.
Tell us how you met and became engaged.
We met at the Crossfit gym we go to. She was new to the gym and we were in the same class for a couple weeks. Chatted a little after a class which turned into a “coffee date” that ended up being 4 hours long. The engagement happened at Forest Theatre on the campus of the University of North Carolina. The Forest Theatre is an outdoor theater surrounded by trees. After dark I had luminaries line the steps down to the stage with a circle in the middle of the stage. She walked down the steps to find me waiting with a ring.
Photography: Kasey Smith Creative // Event Planning: Kast Events // Floral Design: Wild Flora Farm // Invitations: Minted // Wedding Venue: the Barn of Chapel Hill // Wedding Gown: Simply Blush // Hair Stylist: Lillian Self // Makeup Artist: Ashley Bromirski // Film Processing: Indie Film Lab // Tent Rental: Capital Events // Catering: Old Sadie Smoke Shack