Seven years after meeting, my best friend Kelly and her love Andy were wed in a Fort Worth Civil Ceremony at the 2nd District Court of Appeals. We managed to keep it a secret until the very last second as it was attended by immediate family only and myself, which made me feel very special and as we all know, it's all about me. It was a wonderful way to start the holiday week and I am overjoyed to see my friend so happy.
It’s no surprise that couples who have moved (either by law or by choice) their wedding dates are looking to elopement and microwedding options, especially around Lake Tahoe. Still not sure what’s the best fit for your day? Here are some tips for planning your elopement or micro wedding, whether you’re planning far ahead or scrambling last minute.
Like many couples, Sam and Bree faced challenges when planning and de-planning their wedding in 2020. Instead of postponing or cancelling, they decided that they would have an intimate ceremony for just immediate family, officiated by their best friend at their beach that has been in their family for generations. Their Carpinteria Beach micro wedding was relaxed, simple, and full of laughter and plenty of IPAs.
Since Julieanne and Mark had originally wanted to get married on a boat, they decided that if they were going to elope, it should absolutely also be on a boat! Julieanne and Mark were married as the sun was setting behind the ridge in Emerald Bay, on the shores of Vikingsholm Castle in an intimate Lake Tahoe boat elopement thanks to Lake Tahoe Boat Rides. Captain Steve and I worked together to create a great experience for the couple and we nailed the timing and the light!
When Kierney and Will originally planned their wedding, it was going to be a completely relaxed BBQ beach adventure. They wanted games and good times, socializing and tequila. As COVID hit, it became increasingly clear that their wedding dreams were going to be dashed and they completely changed course: calling me out of the blue and deciding to elope at the county clerk's office. It was the perfect afternoon, in my opinion: beers, bikes, and beach champagne. When they finally celebrated they did so with a private backyard Tahoe micro wedding and it was absolutely perfect in every way.
Jina, Lucas, and I originally bonded over bikes: a love of them, the desire to ride them as much as possible, and the idea that bikes belong in every part of your life. This includes your wedding! Their original plan was to get married at Roundhill Pines, have everyone bike down the bike path to a cocktail hour at the Nevada beach pavilion, and ultimately, end up on the backyard of the Basecamp Hotel, which is one of my most favorite wedding venues in South Lake Tahoe. I think they were sold on me when they asked me how I would plan on getting from one venue to the other and I responded with enthusiasm, "ON A BIKE OF COURSE!" Covid, of course, has different plans for all of us though.
Julia and Vitaliy met in Alaska when she was having a brief love affair with becoming a pilot. Vitaliy was her flight instructor. As she tells it, they "fell in love the minute we crawled into the two seat sea-plane and that was that." Julia no longer felt the need to become a pilot since she had one now. And then in an unfortunate, but expected turn of events because of 2020, what was supposed to be a private backyard destination wedding in Lake Tahoe, CA turned into an intimate Orchard Park elopement in Vancouver, WA that was perfectly delightful in every way.
"Whats more 2020 then your photog getting dysentery... but still FUCKING KILLING THE GAME....May faint, will still provide a good time." Hannah's review of my services after her Lake Tahoe Community College Demonstration Garden elopement. Read more about this VERY true story and more from Max and Hannah here!
With SO many of my clients faced with the tough decisions to cancel, postpone or downsize their weddings, many have decided to go this route: just get married and I am 100% here for it. Like so many of my clients, Kierney and Will are still planning on partying later (now in their renovated and redone backyard, thanks to COVID house projects), but they were overjoyed to just go ahead and solidify their union in the most Tahoe-esque way possible.
In the face of a global pandemic, many couples are having to make difficult choices regarding the days they have, in some cases, spent their lives or at least the last year or two, dreaming about. As wedding vendors, we are incredibly aware of how difficult these decisions have been for folks as they also directly affect our livelihoods. Downsizing your wedding expectations without downsizing your excitement is possible, I promise! Head here for some suggestions on reframing your expectations but not minimizing your joy.
Couples choose elopements for a variety of reasons over traditional weddings, and now, in light of current events, I think that many couples may be forced into elopements over weddings for financial reasons. This is not a bad thing! Living in such an incredible, epic location, I have the good fortune to photograph a LOT of elopements and I absolutely love them. Annie and Carter had the ultimate adventure for their elopement: hiking, climbing and scaling Cave Rock for incredible sunset memories!
Couples choose elopements for a variety of reasons over traditional weddings, and now, in light of current events, I think that many couples may be forced into elopements over weddings for financial reasons. This is not a bad thing! Living in such an incredible, epic location, I have the good fortune to photograph a LOT of elopements and I absolutely love them. Michael and Sarah had an overwhelmingly wonderful experience at their adventure elopement and disc golf wedding in Lake Tahoe, and we’re all here to tell you that elopements are amazing.