I can say “gracefully” because of one person — the mother of the bride.

Everyone that day (October 12, 2019) was wonderful to work with, but two people completely stood out — the bride who kept her cool through everything and her mom, who planned for an entire year and then re-planned all the details in less than a week.

Ashley + Connor chose the most beautiful venue — McCrory Gardens in Brookings, South Dakota. They wanted to get married outdoors in the arboretum. Guests would walk down a lit pathway among the trees to the outdoor set up of rows of chairs to make an aisle, where each white chair would have a program and little bag of leaf confetti resting on it. Behind the couple, during the vows, would be two large trees framing the bride and groom. Off to the sides would be her grandmother’s piano, a soloist, and a table full of champagne glasses ready to toast after the couple walked down the aisle. The tent was large enough to hold 250 people and fit among the the beautiful fall colors of the trees.

Inside the tent, there would be chair covers, sashes, matching napkins, fresh flower arrangements, appetizers, and heaters in case it got too cold that evening. It would be perfect.

And then…the unpredictability of South Dakota weather hit. There was a forecasted 35+ mph wind gusts and possibility of snow the day of their wedding. It was time to make the decision…do everything possible to warm the tent and keep Ashley’s dream wedding a reality…or move their wedding indoors. The mother of the bride made the decision the week of the wedding. Hitch Studio did everything we could to help move the entire wedding indoors!

The ceremony was moved to a local church and the reception was moved indoors to McCrory Gardens’ event hall. It wasn’t what Ashley and Connor had pictured their wedding day to be like — but I have to imagine that some parts were even better. <3

Sometimes on a wedding day, Hitch Studio is busy with tasks like setting up a head table backdrop, placing chargers, and making sure the processional is going smoothly down the aisle. Sometimes…*ahem, ahem*…we are doings things like setting up a mimosa bar while the girls are getting their hair and makeup done. THIS is our kind of wedding!

Hitch Studio also set up lunch for the guys and girls, greeted guests and hung jackets on the coat racks as they entered, made sure the candles were lit on the tables and in the lanterns down the aisle, put the mini cheesecakes on the displays after the appetizers were cleared (and later put out pizza for a late night snack!), we took down the dance floor and head table backdrop, and even used a blow dryer on the bridesmaids’ dresses to keep them looking perfect for the ceremony. Weddings planners don’t just carry around a clipboard. We are doers. We are make-it-happen-ers. And we do it all with a smile on our faces because we know this is someone’s BEST DAY EVER. We try to make sure it stays that way!

That was my goal for those two lovely ladies — the bride and her mom. Of all the planning and details that went into Ashley + Connor’s wedding day, the most important detail was making sure they were having a great time and loving the friends and family who came to attend from out of town. THAT’S what should have their full attention that day — not the weather or any small details with changing the wedding venues.

The map I made of McCrory Gardens…that we never needed. 🙂

My other goal? To make sure this outdoor/indoor transition happened as smoothly as possible. Before the wedding, we met several times to put together a map of the ceremony and reception details. We made a plan for who would set up, take down, and move the chairs after the ceremony. We made sure the catering carts wouldn’t have to roll through the bumpy grass. We made sure the musician and catering tents were lit with bistro lights. We made sure there was bug spray and sunscreen. We made sure the outdoor restroom trailer was lit and easy to find…and as pretty as it could be. We made sure all the outdoor details were covered.

And then…after all the preparations…Mother Nature had her own plans. If there was ever a time to have a team like Hitch Studio working on your side, it would be your wedding day, when anything is possible.

Yes, anything was possible. And Ashley + Connor got the wedding of their dreams. Their pictures had a snowy, frosty background and their reception had the most beautiful full flower arrangements, delicious desserts, laughing family and friends…and sweetest love there is.

Congratulations Ashley + Connor! Warmest wishes now and forever. 🙂

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