Updated: Sep 14, 2020
Corey and Ryan’s wedding was a day to remember. But I would be remiss if I didn’t give you guys a peek into the entire journey…
In October of 2019, Corey and Ryan reached out about their 2020 wedding needing assistance planning a wedding in Vermont from out of state and I couldn’t have been happier to help. On my initial call with them, I knew it was going to be a breeze planning with this beautiful couple. They were the most laid back and calm couple I have ever worked with – and their dog, Nemo, was pretty awesome too.
We worked together over the course of the year planning and detailing every single element of their big day. On Sunday, September 6th, 2020 the day finally arrived.
Let’s start with the rehearsal.
Corey and Ryan had a very intimate wedding party, 4 people total. As a planner, it’s very important for me to host a rehearsal whether there is a wedding party or not. We go through every detail for the ceremony, from the processional to special readings. It calms jitters and ensures everyone is aware of what will occur and when on the big day.
Corey and Ryan’s rehearsal was a breeze. Everyone involved was so attentive and asked questions to ensure they understood which made the wedding day seamless.
The Wedding Day
Set up began at 10:00 AM and it was all hands-on deck. With the help of Corey and Ryan’s family, everything was set up within 1.5 hours. From the ceremony site to the reception. It was an unbelievably fast turnaround. But that’s what you can get done when you have 12+ sets of hands helping. The bride and groom didn’t lift a finger day-of, which is every wedding couples dream and something I always ensure when working with my couples. After everything was set, I strolled around the venue with sanitizing wipes, wiping everything down to ensure it was clean and disinfected before guests arrived.
*As a bride who had to set up everything the day prior, day of, and breakdown everything after my reception, I never ever EVER want another bride or groom to have to go through that.*
Hair and makeup began around 10:00 AM. Corey, the mothers, and her bridesmaid enjoyed a relaxing morning getting ready and soaking in the big day. Ryan put his feet up and relaxed with his family as well.
At 2:00 PM, Corey and Ryan saw each other for the first time as they quietly exchanged a first look tucked in the back of the property, with the help of their photographer, Donna Marie Photo Co.
Guests arrived around 3:00 PM and the ceremony started at 3:30 PM. This was a COVID wedding so it was important that we ensured all guests understood proper protocol and guidelines. We had a sanitizing station at the welcome table as well as signage detailing guidelines such as no hugging or shaking hands, keeping a distance, washing hands often, and wearing a mask.
The bride even had a brilliant idea to provide colored bracelets that signified what people were comfortable with at the wedding. The guests would select their comfort level and wear the bracelet throughout the day.
All guests were required to wear a mask to their seat at the ceremony. Once they were seated, they were able to take off their mask. All chairs were separated to provide a comfortable social distance between all guests.
Dan Sherman provided live music for the ceremony. It added another beautiful touch to an already beautiful day. But we didn’t get through the ceremony without a few gun shots…yes it was hunting season in Vermont and people were also most likely target shooting. Only in Vermont.
Corey and Ryan exchanged their vows and embraced their first kiss as Mr. and Mrs. surrounded by the beautiful green mountains making for an incredible photo that they will cherish for a lifetime.
The Cocktail Hour
As guests made their way to cocktail hour, they were greeted with delicious beverages and hors d’oeuvres. Corey and Ryan took formal portraits with their guests and family which lasted no more than 15 minutes allowing them to enjoy most of the cocktail hour with their guests. This is why I love a first look. It allows the wedding couple the opportunity to get all of their formal portraits completed prior to the ceremony so that they aren’t spending hours after the ceremony as guests wait for them to arrive at the reception. It allows them more time with their guests who have traveled to be with them on their special day.
During cocktail hour, I rounded up some of the groomsmen to assist in moving the handmade ceremonial arbor designed and crafted by the groom. There was so much love and thought put into it, there was no way I was going to let it sit at the ceremony site all night. With the help of some muscles, we moved the custom arbor to the reception space and it was ultimately used as a photo-op area with the beautiful hills as the backdrop.
Corey and Ryan were introduced for the very first time as Mr. and Mrs. around 5:00 PM. Before I sent them on their way into the reception, I first made my rounds to all guest tables and ensured their glasses were full for toasts. This is a huge part that is so important when coordinating a wedding. Guests don’t know the timeline for formalities. Only the wedding couple and vendors do. So it’s our responsibility as vendors to ensure guests are covered when it comes to things like toasts. More importantly, I ensured Corey and Ryan had a tasty beverage at their sweetheart table for their toasts as they were all happening right after the first dance.
Once all glasses were full, Corey and Ryan made their way into the reception followed by their pup, Nemo, who escorted them into the venue and joined along in their first dance. After all toasts we moved into dinner announcing tables separately to ensure safe social distancing and space as guests waited in line for dinner.
Once all guests had eaten, Corey and Ryan had their ceremonial cake cutting. Corey and Ryan didn’t know exactly how to cut the cake. This is another common task as the planner and day-of vendor that we assist with because it’s not a common thing and only happens once in a couple’s life. They’ve never done it before so it's common that the couple thinks too much about it. With my assistance, they cut their cake and Donna Marie Photo Co. captured some pretty awesome footage.
Guests mingled while social distancing and enjoyed live music throughout the night until last call at 9:00 PM.
The After Party
After the reception, guests and family members made their way behind the families house where they enjoyed a beautiful fire set next to a pond that glistened from the moon and stars above.
It was a beautiful night that Corey, Ryan and their guests will remember for a lifetime.
The Pick Up
All extra food and desserts were boxed up and delivered back up to the families house for munchies throughout the night and into the following week.
As the coordinator, I stayed behind after all vendors departed for the evening and picked up every last detail to ensure the couple and their families didn’t have to lift a finger the next day. All rentals and linen were cleaned and put back in their homes for the rental company to pick up the following week. Floral arrangements were boxed up for the family to utilize or dispose of the following day.
Tables and chairs were wiped down and moved under proper covering. All glassware and plates were rinsed and cleaned to ensure no food was left behind which would make for very difficult cleaning before the rental company arrived for pickup. All décor items were carefully boxed up and put back inside to ensure easy cleanup the next day.
The venue quite literally was left the way I arrived to it. As a bride who had to do every last detail for her own wedding, it is my goal to ensure my couples never have to experience that. This is a day that happens once in a lifetime. The wedding couple should have fond memories of this special day and be able to look back on it like it was everything they could have imagined and more. That is why I go above and beyond for all of my couples. Because they deserve it…
Congratulations, Corey + Ryan! Wishing you a lifetime of love and so much happiness.
Thank you Donna Marie Photo Co. for capturing all of these beautiful moments. To check out more from their big day, click the link below.