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Perfect Wedding in the Pearl

Alexie & AaronAndina in Portland’s Pearl District was the perfect venue for yesterday’s evening wedding for Alexie and Aaron. From the intimate surroundings of the George V private dining room to the accommodating and courteous staff, everyone felt warm and welcomed. The bride’s children, Nolan and Madeline, escorted the couple to the altar and also did the readings. The ceremony included a tree planting ritual featuring an Upright Japanese Maple which is admired for its brilliant orange foliage. Following the wedding vows, guests enjoyed dinner created by Andina’s award winning chefs. The 3-course menu offered scrumptious choices and a variety of seafood, meat and vegetarian dishes prepared with a Peruvian flair. The newlyweds will honeymoon in Eastern Oregon in their shiny Airstream and enjoy a week of camping and skiing. After some well deserved R & R, they’ll return to their home in Portland where Alexie teaches at PCC and Aaron is a project manager for a construction company. Congratulations, Mrs. & Mrs. McKee, and Happy Trails always!

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Wedding Outshines the Rain at Reserve Vineyards

ashley and ryanRain delayed the start but not the smiles at yesterday’s wedding for longtime sweethearts, Ashley and Ryan. Vows were exchanged in front of friends and four generations of family in the Pavilion at the Reserve Vineyards and Golf Club in Aloha, OR. The couple included a sand ritual in the celebration and presented gratitude roses to their moms and grandmas.   Following the ceremony, guests enjoyed a cocktail reception, dinner, dancing and the always popular sweets table. The newlyweds will honeymoon in Maui before returning back to work and their home in Beaverton. Ryan is in the field of microbiology and Ashley is an admin assistant at Nike. Congratulations, Mr. and Mrs. Osborne. May the sun always shine in your hearts!

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3 Continents Unite at Joyful PDX Wedding

Tony and MariaFamily members literally gathered from far and wide to celebrate the big day for Tony and Maria. The wedding was held yesterday at the luxurious Sentinel Hotel in downtown PDX. Tony’s African roots were well represented by loved ones who crossed the ocean for the big event including his Mom who lives in England and his Grandmother who traveled from Zimbabwe. Born in So. CA, Maria was happy to have her Grandmother attend from Los Angeles; as well as local family members and friends. The spirit of harmony was felt throughout the ceremony and reception … so much joy filled the room it was palpable. And you gotta love it when guests dance before, during and after dinner. That’s my kind of party. The newlyweds will honeymoon in Cancun before returning to PDX where the bride is an esthetician and the groom is a software engineer for Nike. Congratulations, Mr. & Mrs. Tonderai Nemarundwe. May the love and harmony that graced your wedding day remain with you always!

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Best Day Ever for Jessica and Doug

Jessica and DougSeven year sweethearts, Jessica and Doug, exchanged vows yesterday at the West End Theater in downtown PDX. The bride walked down the aisle to Christina Perri’s A Thousand Years and the newlyweds marched out to One Republic’s Good Life.  Navy, tangerine and ivory were the colors of the day. Bridesmaids wore variations of gowns in navy satin and the groomsmen looked sharp in charcoal gray suits, dark blue shirts and navy ties. Following the candlelight ceremony, guests were invited to the upstairs ballroom for cocktail hour and dinner. Special touches for the reception included a large framed seating chart hung on the brick wall outside the ballroom and custom labeled wine bottles indicating table numbers.

After a honeymoon in the Dominican Republic next week, the couple returns to their Portland home on Hayden Island. Congratulations, Mr. & Mrs. Smedley! May the spirit of your “Best Day Ever” remain in your hearts forever.

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Have a Haunted Honeymoon

It’s Halloween season – a perfect time to explore haunted digs for your honeymoon. Haunted Rooms.com provides a listing of the best in domestic creep options. Choose from castles, lighthouses, plantations, traditional hotels and a variety of asylums. Some of the facilities offer tours to enhance the chill factor. The Crescent Hotel (shown here) escorts you to the morgue of this former hospital where you might catch a glimpse of the infamous Dr. Baker who experimented on his patients. Lodging ghosts across the country range from scorned lovers in the lobby to monks in the attic. There’s even a “hand of mystery” in Chicago. If you book the bridal suite at Thornewood Castle in WA, be prepared to share it with the former lady of the house who has reportedly been seen looking lovingly out at the garden. The user friendly website allows you to search hotels by city or state. View if you dare!

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A Plum Perfect Autumn Wedding

Zach and TiernieClear skies, a lush garden setting, bridesmaids in plum satin and groomsmen in gray … what a lovely wedding celebration last Saturday at one of my favorite PDX venues, Leach Botanical Gardens. Teirnie and Zach exchanged vows under the courtyard arbor during the 4:00 ceremony. Truly a family affair; the bride was presented to the groom by her uncle, her five year old son, Beckham, participated in the unity sand ritual and the groom’s mother, Linda, made all the exquisite flower arrangements in the theme colors of plum, magenta and orange. DIY extra nice touch: Bridesmaids were gifted with a memento frosted glass vase to keep their bouquet fresh. Guests were treated to music by No Talk Tunes while enjoying a delicious dinner buffet and took home a gift of Pure Wildflower Honey compliments of the bride and groom (and the bees of Leach Gardens). Congratulations, Mr. & Mrs. Hemelstrand! May all your days together be as lovely as the energy of Saturday’s celebration.

fingerNOTE: Kudos to Linda Hemelstrand for recovering from a zero hour accident with style. She sliced off the tip of her finger while working on the wedding flowers and had to go to ER the day before the wedding!

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Carpenter Weds His Lady

Gary and SarahThe sun shone, the bell rang out and guests cheered as Gary and Sarah said their “I Do”s last Saturday. Hymns from the score of True Grit provided the processional and recessional music and a giant redwood sequoia (the tallest on our planet) was selected for the couple’s unity ritual tree planting – a perfect choice for this carpenter and his gardener bride. The historic Newell House Museum with its spreading chestnut trees and views of rolling hills was an ideal setting for this down home country wedding. Following the ceremony, family and friends enjoyed a barbeque buffet with all the fixins and dancing under twinkle lights to the music of The SlimJims all-star band. The celebration continued as the newlyweds and their guests camped out in tents, cabins and yurts at the neighboring Champoeg State Park. Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Smith! May your marriage be as strong and beautiful as your new sequoia.