Summer camp wedding and redwoods should always be used in the same sentence. Nestled in the Russian River Valley near Sonoma, the Dawn Ranch Lodge encompasses 15 acres of land. Stephanie and Richard rented out the 50+ charming cabins for their guests to enjoy an extended weekend getaway.
Summer Camp Movie Night
After 10 years together, you can imagine marriage comes up a lot in conversation. Richard and Stephanie wanted their day to be memorable for their loved ones. This redwood venue successfully charmed our pants off.
On Friday, festivities kicked off with river canoeing and an outdoor movie night under the stars. Stephanie and I discovered we are kindred spirits after their feature film, Wayne’s World, started rolling on the projector.
Time to go to summer camp and let some images do the talking.
Wedding Day at Dawn Ranch Lodge
The morning of the wedding, guests had more opportunities to explore the river or hang out by the pool before preparing for the day. The guys dressed in the boathouse near the lawn of the movie screening, while Stephanie and her girls got ready in the bridal cabin on the other side of the venue.
With anticipation hanging in the air, we borrowed one of our favorite cabins to hide Stephanie in before the first look. Richard couldn’t keep the smile off of his face as the wedding party giggled profusely in the corner leading up the reveal.
Portraits at Armstrong Redwoods
We managed to whisk Stephanie and Richard away to the Armstrong Woods for some quiet moments together before their ceremony began. Even a slim 20 minutes under these giants can do wonders for your piece of mind. The light poking through the trees in the early afternoon was pure magic.
Redwood Ceremony in the Meadow
We returned to the venue with just enough time to slip in line for the processional. Guests were seated in chairs lining the edge of the meadow, with ancient redwoods as the backdrop.
Richard was emotional, even though he had seen Stephanie minutes before she walked down the aisle. It was so sweet to watch his reaction.
As guests made their way to the apple orchard, we explored the woodsy landscapes around Dawn Ranch Lodge for more portraits.
But the party didn’t start until Stephanie and Richard made their grand entrance to the reception.
Apple Orchard Reception
These two are loved dearly by their friends and family. The reception tables were ordered by cities and countries to signify how far everyone traveled that weekend to be there. The reception hour in the orchard embraced us in a warm glow as the sun kissed the tree tops.
After toasts, guests were invited to the pool deck for dessert and dancing. Everyone found their way to the dance floor at some point that evening. Two of them even made it into the pool, fully clothed. Stephanie was convinced it was the swan.
Congratulations, Richard and Stephanie! May the next 10 years be even better than the first.
Their Vendor Team
Cake: Village Bakery // Coordinator: Meghan Magnasco, So Eventful // Dress: Pronovias Sample // Entertainment: Dart DJ // Florist: Green Petal Designs // Groom’s Attire: Black Tux // Invitations: Good on Paper Design // Make Up Artist: Selyca Medford // Officiant: Irene Kane, Ceremonies & Celebrations // Photography: Paige Nelson Photography// Shoes: Stuart Weitzman // Wedding Favors: Coffee Mugs, Discountmugs // Venue: Dawn Ranch Lodge
If you loved this wedding, I recommend checking out Jem & Peter’s summer camp wedding at Leonard Lake Reserve!
I was honored when Rachael and Sam asked me to photograph their Golden Gate Park wedding in San Francisco.
Rachael has been my best friend since elementary school and I am so happy she found her person in this world. If you’re around Sam and Rachael for five minutes, you can see why they belong together.
Sam and Rachael are both bookworms and die-hard Harry Potter fans. They chose Hellman Hollow in Golden Gate Park for their wedding because of the namesake to “Godric’s Hollow” in the books. Their wedding date is also the birthday of both J.K. Rowling and Harry Potter. Was it really an accident? 😉
Rehearsal in Hellman Hollow
A few days before the wedding, I arrived in San Francisco to explore and attend their rehearsal. The weather in Northern California is always so unpredictable. The wind chill crawled through your skin and stung your eyes to tears. We huddled in a circle to share our favorite memories of Sam and Rachael, in front of the giant tree they would exchange their vows. Then it was time for pizza to warm our bones.
Wedding Day in San Francisco
It was cold and drizzly the morning of the wedding, but it didn’t dampen any of our spirits. I spent time with Rachael and Sam in their separate rooms at the quirky Oceanview Motel as they prepared for the day. The anticipation got to them both. It was so sweet to see how nervous, and terribly excited, they were to see each other.
It was a truly unique experience to capture their special day as it unfolded in front of my lens. Congratulations you two! Your joy is contagious and I love you both to pieces!
Their Vendor Team
Catering: Bi-Rite Catering // Cake: Applebaum Bakery // Florals: Ed Heller // Vocals/Music: Hayley Johnson- The Little Miss // Officiant: Lauren Snead, Rhythm & Light Ceremonies // Party Rentals: Your Party Rental Company // Shoes: Allen Edmonds; Miz Mooz // Suit: Kipper Clothiers // Rings: Love & Lux // Wedding Coordinator: Tiffany Won // Wedding dress: BHLDN // Venues: Oceanview Motel; Hellman Hollow, Golden Gate Park; Sutro Bath Ruins at Land’s End
If you loved this Golden Gate Park wedding, check out Becca & Bryan’s intimate Botanic Garden wedding.