• Posted by Matt •
It's always fun to see how a couple can make a wedding day their own and Jana and Ben were no exception with their destination wedding in Cape Vincent, NY. I have known Jana vaguely for quite some time — we both were on the Temple University crew team— and became closer friends when we started working out at the same CrossFit gym, so it was really fun to be a part of such a big weekend in her life.
Jana met Ben through rowing, and Cape Vincent — which is a stone's throw away from Canada — quickly became a regular vacation spot for them. Ben's family had been going there for years so they decided that was where they wanted to have their wedding. They decided to make a whole weekend celebration out of the occasion. As an added bonus, the place was just perfect for pictures!
They started everything off on Friday night by hosting a cookout on one of the islands in nearby Thousand Islands, NY. The setting could not have been more ideal. There was a beautiful sunset, warm, fresh water to swim in and food and refreshments right on the sand. It was really a great way for all the different groups of people (Jana had a group of CrossFit friends, both of them had sets of rowing friends, as well as both families and more) to mingle and get to know each other. It was also fun to see their bulldog Hugo splashing around in the water. The following morning they organized a group team workout.
Then it was time for the reason everyone was there. They rented out an entire bed and breakfast for the wedding, and the bride and groom both got ready there. Jana wore an awesome wedding dress that made it easy for her to move around and enjoy the day without overheating in the midday sun. Ben had on a sharp navy blue suit. When they were both ready, we orchestrated a first look in the back yard before the rest of the guests arrived.
Their quaint outdoor ceremony was held in the backyard. They invited all their guests to stand around them as part of the ceremony instead of setting up rows of chairs. Their friends were involved in all aspects of the ceremony from officiant, to their ceremony musicians, to friends doing the flowers as well.
We only had a few minutes for portraits but with such a beautiful house and waterfront just steps away, we more than made it work! Bride and groom portraits with beautiful late afternoon sunlight are the best.
For the reception they moved the whole group to the front of the Bed and Breakfast, which bordered the St. Lawrence River. A reception overlooking the water was very fitting for a couple that was brought together by their love for rowing. There were more personal touches like burlap table runners, little candles and flowers in mason jars on each table and, oh yea, the whole thing being catered by a barbecue company! Their attempts to get all of the groups comfortable around each other throughout the prior 24 hours really showed: their dance floor was crazy! I am not sure I've ever seen a dance floor so consistently packed with people from start to finish.
Jana and Ben, thank you so much for trusting me to photograph such an awesome weekend! We wish you all the best!