Congratulations to Elena & Mike, who recently celebrated their wedding here in Charlottesville on a gorgeous spring day! After documenting some of their getting ready and Elena donning a stunning Alberta Ferretti gown, we all converged at Holy Comforter just north of the Downtown Mall for a wonderful service, notable for their priest’s compelling homily addressed just as much to friends as family as it was to the happy couple. During the ring exchange, someone (we’re not telling who!) accidentally dropped one of the rings–oopsie–but recovered nicely after some good laughter from everyone. Afterwards, Elena & Mike ran out the front doors to the cheers of their assembled family and friends. Many of those in attendance were part of UVa’s successful football program, as Mike is their offensive coordinator (his dad Al, as you may know, is the head coach). A few of the immediate family members and wedding party accompanied us to the UVa Grounds for some casual portraits on the Lawn, despite the brisk breeze. Their two ring bearers were more into hanging out and playing (who could blame them with such great weather?), which continued full-bore once we landed at Farmington Country Club for cocktails and the reception.

While at Farmington, Elena & Mike wanted a few casual shots with them and their wedding party, so we took off in the field just north of the house, and everyone kicked off their shoes for a fun portrait before returning to enjoy hors d’oeuvres and some of their signature drinks. It was also like a bit of a reunion of sorts working with some of the other local pros, including Jessi of Moxie and Jennifer of Elan, who did a fabulous job with Elena’s hair and make-up, respectively; Pat & Sherry, who hung glass votive candles on tree branches just inside the doorway leading to the ballroom and of course the stunning tabletop displays; and last but not least Big Ray and the Kool Kats, who we had last worked with back in 2004. It had been too long! Great folks, all. Big Ray was accommodating with the play list, even having the band learn some Bon Jovi songs, apparently a first for them, for the very eager crowd that night. Mike’s mom even got into the act later that evening with a rousing version of Dancing Queen, one for which she is apparently well known. For those who preferred to take a break from dancing and chat a bit, Elena had a fun tented lounge set up just outside of the ballroom. Liz with Skyline Tents did a beautiful job with the lighting and the clear tent allowed the beautiful sunset to shine through.

During the cake cutting, Elena & Mike courteously fed each other but then, unable to hold it in any longer, Elena touched a bit of frosting on Mike’s nose. He did not retaliate. Smart man. ;-D The cake, also baked by Farmington along with an assortment of cupcakes, was typically delicious. By the time the party wound down to the band leading the couple off to the front entrance to a sparkler departure, everyone was still ready to go strong. We’re pretty sure it continued well into the night elsewhere, as they were all a pretty happy and festive group. Thank you, Elena & Mike, for having us out to document your wedding! Like you, we had a blast! Go Hoos!!

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