When you plan or coordinate a wedding for people you know, you just feel more connected to it. This is one reason I really try to get to know all my couples before their wedding day, but feeling connected is especially easy when your friendship began almost two and a half years before the wedding. This was the case with Ryan and Mackenzie. I met them during our summer teacher training in June of 2014. Ryan had just graduated from Clemson (an immediate and never failing connection... Go Tigers!), and Mackenzie had made her way to Charlotte from FSU (an immediate friendly rivalry). It was great to be able to see their relationship grow and to see what amazing teachers they both turned out to be. It was even better when they contacted me and wanted me to be a part of their Best. Day. Ever.
On October 29, 2016 the couple tied the knot at Covenant Presbyterian Church and then headed out to Morning Glory Farms (on the most beautiful day!) for their reception. Mackenzie and Ryan knew what they wanted from the beginning when starting to plan their day: for the event to feel like a family gathering. They wanted everyone to feel comfortable, close-knit, and to be able to celebrate with no stress. To make that happen they kept the decor simple (craft paper runners, amber bottles with loose greens, and candles), served dinner family style on the tables, and radiated happiness and warmth to all their guests.
I would say that they succeeded. Big time. All the guests were in a great mood and thoroughly enjoyed the night. From the fantastic cocktail hour with amazing Fall flavors from Roots Catering, to the sweet first dances, through a wonderful dinner, onto a night of dancing to a live band, and finally to a sweet sparkler exit.
My favorite moment of the night was when the bride and groom cut the cake. They had a small round for themselves and then mini pies for all guests. As Mackenzie is eating her first bite, she gets this look on her face like that carrot cake from Sunflour Baking Company is the most delicious dessert she's ever tasted (it may just have been!). The reaction to the cake was great, but what makes the moment better, is that the next thing she did was turn around to me and say "you have to try a bite," while holding out her fork to me. It was the first, and probably the last time I'll see a bride offer her coordinator, followed by her photographer, and then the catering director the wedding cake off of her own plate! Adding to this adorable gesture was the groom, who started cutting and serving the couple's personal cake for guests (because let's be honest, everyone wanted some after seeing their faces!).
*we eventually made him stop and keep the rest of the cake for him and his new bride so he didn't regret that it was all gone later. And no guests were disappointed in the process... they then discovered the mini pies!
It was an absolute joy to be a part of this day. Ryan and Mackenzie, I hope it was everything you dreamed it would be. And even though you went right back to law school/work... don't forget to book yourself a fantastic honeymoon! You deserve it.
All the best,