This past week, after postponing their August 2020 wedding to July 2021 due to Covid, Mark and Maggie and 150 of their closest friends and family celebrated their nuptials with weekend-long extended festivities.
From a rehearsal dinner at Lobster in the Rough in York, Maine the night before the wedding to the post-wedding after party at the Press Room in Portsmouth, NH, this lovely couple set out to enjoy every moment of their long-awaiting wedding weekend.
While Mark, an engineer originally from New England, and Maggie, a teacher raised in New Jersey, currently hail from San Diego, they actually met and fell in love in D.C. After two years together in D.C., the couple pursued their mutual dream of moving to the Golden State. A year of Pacific Ocean sunsets and a beach proposal later found them engaged and planning their dream wedding.
In the weeks leading up to the wedding, the adventurous couple packed up their teardrop camper and traveled east as they explored their way cross country from California to New England.
The Wedding Party
Standing up with and supporting the couple as their wedding party were: maid of honor Eileen, and bridesmaids, Kristin, Christine, and Kirsten, as well as co-best men Jeff and Jared, and groomsmen Zak and Matt. The groom's niece, Sofia, served as the flower girl.
The bride and groom, along with their attendants, got ready separately at the Hotel Portsmouth where they stayed during the wedding weekend.
Hair and makeup for the bride, mom, and bridesmaids were provided by Amour 24 of Dover, NH.
Maggie and Mark shared an intimate "first look" at the Hotel Portsmouth, before being transported via private trolley courtesy of Ludwig's Limousine to Odiorne Point State Park in Rye, NH and then Prescott Park in Portsmouth, NH - the Seacoast locations serving as beautiful backdrops for photographs of the couple and wedding party.
Capturing the day's special moments were Melissa and Morgan of Amanda Rai Photography.
Though the day before, hail and rain had cut the rehearsal short, the day of the wedding dawned clear and warm. With cloudless blue skies and green pasture as far as the eye could see, the Meadow at Red Ridge Farm served as an idyllic backdrop for exchange of vows and subsequent reception.
A working farm, cows and goats are always on the premises at Red Ridge; often the cows are invited to the ceremony. They can be seen grazing behind the couple during their vows and have been known to steal the show or photo bomb.
Also, wild turkeys, herons, and other wildlife have been known to wedding crash.
The ceremony was officiated by the girlfriend of the bride's brother whose connection to the couple made the ceremony personal and heartfelt. The couple's vows were sweet and endearing and the groom's personalized vows were particularly romantic and emotional. From the pledges spoken to the love-filled looks exchanged whenever the couple looked at one another during the entire day, the love between them was evident and tangible.
Beatles songs, played on acoustic guitar, served as the procession and recession music as well as the bridal march Maggie walked down the aisle to, accompanied by her father, John.
Microphone and audio equipment for the ceremony provided by Mike Guyre of Audio Events.
After the ceremony, the guests posed with the bridal party for a group photo before heading to the reception where the party was kicked off by a champagne toast to the couple led by the father of the bride.
I can only describe the vibe the couple wanted for their day as a "free range" wedding. Mark and Maggie wanted guests to feel unrestricted and free to wander and enjoy the beautiful farm locale of their wedding. There was no seating plan; guests were encouraged to sit when and where they wished and to enjoy the many activities and areas for leisure they had provided around the farm.
As for decor, the rustic touches - wine barrel cocktail tables, burlap, and antique wooden pieces - were offset by the whimsy and beauty of the delicate antique lace tablecloths, wildflowers, and fairy lights.
Tables and linens were provided by Sperry, as well as the wine barrel cocktail tables, and a bar and dessert table made from a rough cut wooden top and wine barrel base.
Following the simple, clean, and rustic aesthetic of the wedding, the tablescapes consisted of mason jars with dried wildflowers set on burlap runners over ivory tablecloths.
Providing videography services was Gabrielle of Price Burr Photography.
Food & Drink
The couple, self-professed foodies and beer enthusiasts, wanted to ensure that their guests were treated to excellent food and a plethora of drink choices.
Big Pig Catering met the challenge of providing top notch cuisine for the event in the delicious BBQ feast that included pulled pork sliders, grilled chicken, brisket, St. Louis ribs with choice of sauces and multiple side offerings such as corn on the cob, coleslaw, roasted vegetables, cornbread, and a creamy mac and cheese.
Multiple beer and wine options were offered, as well as mixed drinks and a special margarita recipe which served as the couple's signature cocktail.
A water station set up on a lace-covered wooden spool table kept guests hydrated between lawn games and dancing.
Alcohol was provided by Marcorelle's. Tending bar and providing waitstaff services were the excellent staff of Premier.
Instead of a traditional wedding cake, Mark and Maggie opted to have a variety of cupcakes featuring alcohol inspired flavors such as tiramisu (with Kahlua) and Irish Chocolate Stout (with Guiness). Alcohol-free mini cupcakes were also available, though all were equally delicious.
Cupcakes were provided by Alice of Geekamuffins of Dover, NH, who happened to be a family friend, and former babysitter, of the bride, Maggie.
Cupcake signage by Geekamuffins.
Details & Decor
Bear-shaped bottles of honey from San Diego served as sweet favors for guests and came in four varieties: sage, wildflower, avocado, and orange blossom.
Eventi Planning & Coordination owner and Wedding Coordinator, Rena, and Assistant Coordinator Casey were tasked with turning the couple's rustic, yet elegant, vision into a reality as well as handling their wedding management and coordination.
All hand-lettered signs featured throughout the wedding were custom created for the couple by Rena from Eventi Planning & Coordination. Signs and antique blueberry crate also rented from Eventi.
Maggie and Mark wanted their guests to enjoy the beautiful outdoor venue in a relaxed, fun, and unstructured way. They set up several areas for their guests to sit, mingle, talk, or engage in an activity.
From an adirondack loveseat and wooden swing to a hay bale couch with large wooden spool side table, there were plenty of areas for guests to gather or rest.
Guests also gathered around the fire pit as the sun set, where they were encouraged, if chilly, to take pashmina shawls provided by the couple.
Weddings always seem to go by so quickly and this one was no exception. Though the photographers captured amazing and magical moments, the true magic was in the air; it could be felt in the happiness these two radiated throughout the day, the love that was evident between them in their vows and their glances, and the love those in attendance had for them.
Mark and Maggie, Eventi loved being a part of your wedding day and I enjoyed getting to know such a sweet and fun couple! Every happiness in your life together. ~Rena
Rena Dandurant, owner of Eventi Planning & Coordination.