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'Hoos in Love

If you're a UVA alum and got married in Charlottesville, we want to hear about it! Send your story and pictures to editor@IvyPublications.com.

 
 

 

Lindsay '08 & Will '09

Photo by Jen Fariello

Will and I met in January of our 2nd year at UVA. We were introduced by mutual friends at his fraternity's annual oyster roast. We had a great time hanging out that night, but we both didn't think things would go anywhere after that. Well, the next Wednesday classes started and I walked into my chemistry lab (1 of 30 labs offered) and Will was in my lab, which also meant he was in my chemistry class. The following day I walked into my personality psychology class and low-and-behold, there was Will, sitting in the auditorium. We sat together that day, and every day after that for the rest of the semester.  The semester progressed and so did our friendship. I knew that we had something more than just study dates in Alderman Library, we were best friends and spent every day together. Will and I both decided to stay in Charlottesville that summer and take some classes. When we returned to Charlottesville in June, he called me and asked me to meet him at the Virginian for dinner. From that night on we were inseparable and the rest is history!

We dated for the next 3 years.  I began my PhD program in 2009 and he graduated from the Commerce School and moved to Richmond. After a year of back-and-forth trips between Richmond and Charlottesville, Will proposed and we began planning our special day.   From the beginning, there was no question that our wedding would be in Charlottesville.  It was such a special place to us, filled with memories and fun things to do, and we wanted to share that with our friends and family. Since we were the first ones of our college friends to get engaged, we also knew that all of our friends would love an excuse to come back to Charlottesville. Will and I had a very similar vision for our wedding--traditional with our own fun, personal stamp on it. We both loved going out to King Family Vineyards and knew that it was the perfect venue for our reception. We decided that July 3rd, our engagement anniversary, my parents' anniversary and a day after Will's parents' anniversary, was the perfect date. The vineyard was exactly what we wanted--casual and elegant with beautiful scenery. Our wedding dreams came true when we were able to book the UVA Chapel for our ceremony. It was the perfect way to honor the school that we love so much.

We had so much fun incorporating personal touches into our wedding. Everything from the paper suite, wedding decor, guest book, and favors to the bridesmaids gifts, bow ties, and signature drink were custom designed by us. We also went back to our southern roots with a menu full of mac n' cheese, crab cakes, corn bread, chicken and waffles, shrimp and grits, and sweet potato ham biscuits from my favorite caterer. After our first dance to Van Morrison's "Someone Like You," everyone put on their "boogie shoes" (i.e., flip-flops) and danced the night away. Our band, Attraction, was amazing and did a special Michael Jackson impersonation for us (per my Dad's request). We were having so much fun that we didn't even realize that a huge thunderstorm was rolling through, giving our photographer, Jen Fariello, an opportunity to tae some amazing photos of the lightning coming across the mountains. Our wedding was perfect--the ceremony, setting, food, music, and of course, the guests! It was a night we will cherish for the rest of our lives.  

 

 

Betty '80 & Keith '76

My husband Keith and I married in Charlottesville on August 14, 1976.

We met on a Cave Club trip my first year (his third), and had been engaged for two years, but didn’t set the date until a month before the wedding. It wasn’t a full-on hippie wedding, as not only was the Age of Aquarius pretty well over by that point, but we didn’t want to alienate my traditional parents too much. But it was hardly a traditional wedding.

We were married by Pastor Ken Carlson at Immanuel Lutheran Church. We had 20 people at the wedding, counting the pastor. I wore a knee length white dress that I’d worn to my first dance when I was 14 (so my “something old” was my dress), and my husband wore white slacks and a white turtleneck (I figured if I had to wear white, he did, too).

Our tiered wedding cake came from Foods of All Nations, and I made the groom’s cake myself (a chocolate bundt cake from a mix) the night before the wedding. Our flowers consisted of corsages for the mothers, a boutonniere for Keith, and a small bouquet for me. We wrote our own vows, and walked down the aisle together to Handel’s Water Music (played on my portable record player).

It was the middle of August, and as hot as you’d expect. The church wasn’t air conditioned at the time (I assume it must be, now!). The reception was held at a place called Henry House, which was a condo that was rented out by the night as if it were a hotel.

Except for Henry House (where my parents stayed the night before the wedding), the entire wedding cost less than $100. No wedding rings, no attendants, and my family didn’t give me away. After the reception, we went out to eat and to the movies with our out-of-town friends, and for our honeymoon we went hiking in Dolly Sods, a wilderness area in West Virginia.

Keith and I will be celebrating our 36th anniversary this summer.

 

 

Amanda '07 & Gavin '07

Photo by Sarah Cramer

Gavin and I met during our first semester at UVA, where we immediately bonding over a shared love of Willie Nelson and southern music.  Charlottesville is the setting in which our relationship grew into a life-long love, and all though we have moved across the country three times together since then, we knew we wanted to get married in the place where we met. 

Gavin proposed to me on a family fly-fishing trip in Colorado.  Wearing waders, boots, and his over-stuffed fishing vest, he pulled a ring box out of his pocket, got down on one knee, and asked me to be his wife.  We spent the rest of that trip celebrating with family, and starting to imagine our wedding day.

The wedding plans started to come together when we found our venue, the Inn at Westwood Farms, in Orange, VA.  The casual feel of the farm and beautiful surroundings were the perfect location for the relaxed and intimate ceremony we had in mind.  Many of our decorations came from our talented family and friends, including cake stands, some made and some borrowed, a embroidered handkerchief made by my talented aunt, and honey jar escort cards that my mom and I put together.  The story of our fly-fishing engagement made its way into the invitations, which included a diagram of how to “tie the knot,” and the flowers, which featured the beautiful feathers used to make fishing flies.

Our ceremony took place on a small rise on the farm, where our guests sat in a semi-circle around the Gavin and I, and our wedding party.  A four-piece bluegrass band played some of our favorite music throughout the ceremony and the rest of the evening.  We had lawn games and a bonfire for our guests to enjoy, and a photo booth that doubled as a guestbook.  Our caterers created a menu that reflected our desire for a local and seasonal meal, including braised pork, roasted fall vegetables, and amazing sweet potato biscuits with apple butter and ham.  After dinner we switched on a dance playlist, and spent the rest of the night celebrating with our friends and family.

Our wedding day reflected us in so many ways- it was intimate, allowing us to celebrate with the most important people in our lives, but it was also loud and fun, with games, music, great food and drinks.  In the end, it was everything we wanted- the best day of our lives.

Venue: Inn at Westwood Farms
Caterer: Beggars Banquet
Florist: Sugar Magnolias
Photographer: Sarah Cramer
Musicians: Second String Band
Cupcakes: Cakes by Rachel

 

 

Walt '06 & Annie '06

Photo by Sarah Cramer

Walt and I met at first year orientation at the University of Virginia. At the time we didn’t know we had just met the person we were going to marry, but we already knew that Charlottesville was a special place for both of us. So when Walt proposed, there was no question of where we would get married. Fortunately, both of Walt’s parents and my father are UVa grads as well, so our families were enthusiastic about our choice.

Planning a wedding in Charlottesville from Boston proved difficult, but the task was made far easier by the wonderful local wedding vendors. Walt and I are both writers and English majors, so we knew we wanted a library-themed wedding. Meghan Streit of Shindig Weddings and her team were enormously helpful in all aspects of planning. They were thrilled about our theme and had fantastic suggestions for décor ideas.

Although most of the planning occurred online, we also made several trips down to Charlottesville to meet with vendors. Trips could be tiring, but we always left with more excitement and enthusiasm about the big day.

Our wedding was on November 5, 2011. The ceremony was at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, which Walt and I attended as students. It was a fairly traditional ceremony, but we found personalization in the readings and music. Heather Hightower, friend from college and professional singer, was the cantor. The University Singers, a group Walt was a part of in college, performed as well.

The reception followed at Farmington Country Club. With its beautiful architecture and view of the Blue Ridge Mountains, it was the perfect setting. Our library theme played into several décor elements—from a card catalog-turned-escort card table to stacks of books indicating table numbers to green library lamps on the head tables.

Walking into the Ballroom for the first time was amazing—it was such a thrill to see everything we’d been planning come to life even more beautifully than we’d imagined. Thanks to Shindig and the Farmington staff, we got to enjoy our wedding to the fullest.

Between dancing with all our friends to taking pictures on the Farmington lawn at twilight to our cookie table (complete with book page tablecloth), Walt and I kept saying how we felt this was the best day ever. Months later, we still feel that way. We’re already planning our first anniversary in Charlottesville!

 

Tassie '04 & Jason '04

Photo by Jen Fariello

Jason and I met at a fraternity/sorority mixer our first year at UVA, and we spent the next three years becoming close friends. By our fourth year of college most of our friends could see a spark between us, but it took a hurricane cancelling classes and shutting down Charlottesville for Jason and I to take a minute to realize there might be something more.

After graduation Charlottesville remained a special place to us, not only because of our great times at UVA, but also as the home to our favorite first memories as a couple – surprising each other with snacks from our favorite sandwich shop, meeting up at that one table in the library, telling me he loved me for the first time.

Jason popped the question seven years later on a golf ball on the 14th hole of a course outside of our current hometown, Philadelphia. By the time we finished the round of golf, we knew we would be getting married in Charlottesville, a place that held so many great memories and best represented our relationship. 

On our wedding day, Jason and I wanted to incorporate UVA as well as Charlottesville’s historic architecture and gorgeous landscape. We also wanted to combine traditional aspects with some fun-loving and personal details. We had a Catholic ceremony at the UVA Chapel that included a beautiful solo of Ava Marie, which had been sung at both of my sisters’ weddings as well. 

Our reception followed at Farmington Country Club where guests spread out on the lawn during cocktail hour, playing games, enjoying the view of the Blue Ridge Mountains and walking around in flip flops. We had a dozen guests under the age of 12 who thoroughly enjoyed themselves during that time. Golf, a sport that had been a significant part of my upbringing and something that we love to do together, was a repeated theme throughout the reception.

Jason and I had several fun pictures taken on Farmington’s course and our escort card table was made up for golf balls teed up on a sheet of grass. As we made our official entrance into the ballroom, the groomsmen made an archway out of golf clubs for us to walk under, which was a tradition from my parents’ wedding.

Our wedding incorporated UVA’s traditional orange and navy colors as well as a dash of red – the traditional Chinese wedding color. The bridal party wore different styles of navy silk taffeta dresses and carried bouquets of orange and red flowers. My mother transformed a bridesmaid dress into a junior bridesmaid dress for my niece so she could match the rest of the ladies.

The groom’s party wore navy suits with orange calla lily boutonnieres. My mother also made pillows for my nephews to carry the rings on, but my youngest nephew preferred carrying a stuffed animal of Nemo. Jason had given me the stuffed Nemo years ago as we had watched Finding Nemo on our first date. For the reception, Jason’s mother hand made a red sash and bolero for me and a red tie for Jason to incorporate the traditional color.

We had an amazing time at our reception and we believe our guests did too. I’m not sure if the adults or children loved our candy bar more and the band kept the dance floor crowded all night. Our photographer, Jen Fariello, ran a photo shoot for guests with vintage props and chalkboards, allowing our guests to leave us surprise messages. Those pictures and messages were an incredible gift that we continuously cherish. 

At the end of the night we said goodbye with a balcony kiss (just as good as Will and Kate’s!) and a sparkler departure to our getaway golf cart.

 

 
 



 

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