This wedding had so many beautiful details that we just couldn’t fit them all into one single blog article. For more about Ben and Samantha’s Lighting Design, check out last week’s article, and stay tuned for more about their wedding reception and special events, next week! Click here to check out the other articles in this multi-part style profile on Ben and Samantha’s big day or to learn more about the Hitched wedding project.
On Sunday, August 24, 2014, we had the pleasure of providing ceremony entertainment and sound support for Ben and Samantha’s wedding ceremony (and reception) in conjunction with the Hitched wedding project.
After months of planning, the big day was finally here!
Guests arrived starting right at about 4:00 PM at Happy Days Lodge, where they were welcomed by a variety of whimsical, handpainted signs, including a very cute and politely-worded “Unplugged Wedding” announcement chalkboard-sandwichboard.
Once inside, they were directed to the Solarium (Happy Days Lodge’s large, screened semi-outdoor pavilion), where they enjoyed tea and lemonade served in Ball Mason jars with those cute little shabby-chic striped paper straws.
Meanwhile, they were serenaded by a violin/guitar duo (courtesy of Dave and Gwen) playing a variety of well-loved classical pieces.
The lawn at Happy Days Lodge in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park provided the perfect background for Ben and Samantha’s perfect day — and what a perfect day it was! Beautiful blue skies with puffy clouds and not too hot for an outdoor ceremony!
The ceremony began a stunning a cappella rendition of “At Last” by the bride’s close friend Damian, before the bridal party processed down the aisle in pairs to Stookey’s “The Wedding Song.”
Next, it was time for the bride’s processional! Here comes the bride!
Escorted by her mother, Samantha walked down the aisle to the recorded string quartet version Wagner’s “Bridal Chorus” (the song commonly known as “Here Comes the Bride”).
During the brief ceremony officiated by Bob Javorsky of Our Wedding Officiant, Ben and Samantha celebrated several marriage traditions, both old and new, beginning with their wedding backdrop created by With Love and Whimsy. This hand-lettered canvas bore verses from 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 —
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres…
Next, Ben and Samantha chose to incorporate a “ring warming” ceremony, where the rings were passed from row to row as each guest was offered the opportunity to hold the rings in their hands before the couple exchanged rings.
Then, the couple created an anniversary box — sort of like a little love letter time capsule to open on their first anniversary. This is sometimes done with a bottle of wine, too, but since Samantha doesn’t much care for wine, the couple decided to stick with the simplicity of the letters, themselves, nailing the box shut in a really fun and different ritual.
If the table looks familiar, it’s because it’s Anna-Jeannine’s little table she carts around to bridal shows filled with literature! Ben and Samantha added this part of their ceremony somewhat last minute. They were looking for a table, and we happened to have the perfect thing to coordinate with their colors!
Next, the couple exchanged rings, vows, and a kiss…
…before they made their way back down the aisle to a sting version of Jason Mraz’s “I’m Yours” by Vitamin String Quartet!
After the wedding ceremony, family and bridal party gathered in the field for some “formal” photos. These are some of my favorites: