If you love a progressive party, then you’ll find so much inspiration from this socially distanced backyard wedding.
Hannah and Danny got married in the backyard of the bride’s parent’s home in Atherton. Since they couldn’t have the large party that they originally planned, they created a super fun socially distanced backyard wedding. The fabulous Julie Briggs Dunn of JBD Events and the couple designed a “progressive” event with several stages of the day to keep guests entertained.
Here is Hannah and Danny’s story in photos….
After hair and makeup were done and everyone was dressed, I took each family (individually so Hannah & Danny couldn’t see each other!) to the gorgeous backyard for family portraits. The light and the background were stunning for portraits. Just take a look at the photos below.
And right before the ceremony, both families held a pre-ceremony prayer. Hannah’s family in the music room and Danny’s family outside. It was beautiful to watch both families come together to celebrate their children’s wedding in prayer.
The ceremony took place in the garden under a ring of birch trees (my favorite!) in the backyard and was framed in beautiful flower petals that matched Hannah’s bouquet. The chairs were arranged so that everyone got to sit with their family “pod” – it was actually cute to see the chairs set up that way. The ceremony included 2 officiants – they stayed socially distanced from the couple but still managed to make the ceremony feel intimate. We even set up a Zoom feed so everyone could watch the ceremony from their own home. I know that they can’t wait to be there in person for the big wedding next year!
Mexican-themed Cocktail Hour
After the ceremony guests mingled in the garden, which gave me time to create gorgeous portraits of the couple. The backlighting coming through the leaves was absolutely magical. Meanwhile, the guests were enjoying a Mexican-themed cocktail hour with “grab and go” appetizers, Mexican decor, and fun lawn games. I quickly finished the portraits so they could join their guests for all the fun.
Dinner and Toasts
After the cocktail hour guests were seated for dinner – safely distanced in their family “pods” at each table. Dinner was a gourmet feast prepared by not 1, but 2 of my favorite chefs! As the father of the bride tells it, he called a restauranter friend of his in New York who gave him Chris Cosentino’s contact info. Dad called, thinking that Chef Chris would refer him to one of his sous chefs, but no! Chef Chris insisted on creating the meal and brought along his friend, Chef Staffen Terje from Perbacco (one my personal favorites!). What a treat for everyone to enjoy a meal from these 2 masters. And guess what? I got to eat it too! It was truly delicious.
The toasts were incredible – everyone loves Hannah & Danny! And Hannah’s mom, Amy gave the funniest and sweetest toast using Broadway musicals. You’ll have to wait for the wedding video to fully appreciate it, but trust me… it was wonderfully creative.
The Reception – A Flash Mob, Silent Disco, and Stanford Games
After dinner in the garden, everyone got straight on the dancefloor, and the party kicked off with a secret (at least from the bride and groom) flash mob! Mom (Amy) led the group to a choreographed array of wonderful music. She was awesome! I think she may have missed her calling.
It was getting late, so to keep the neighbors happy, Hannah & Danny had a silent disco! In case you don’t (yet) know what that is, everyone dons a pair of headphones with 3 colored lights built-in. Those guests who had the same color on their lights had the same music. It’s hysterical to watch a group silently dancing all to different music.
Next came games around the basketball court which was decorated to look like a Stanford game. There were several stations of tasks that the “contestants” had to finish to get a prize. I remember beer pong, bear annihilation, and having to play the Stanford fight song on kazoo.
Cake, Sparklers, and a Decorated Getaway Car!
After the winners collected their prizes, everyone headed to the front drive for desserts and cake cutting. There was chocolate panna cotta and strawberry shortcake, and adorable cookies that look just like the bride and groom!
The evening ended with Hannah and Danny exiting the house under a tunnel of sparklers and driving off in their decorated getaway car – complete with flowers, balloons, and noisy cans.
The whole socially distanced backyard wedding was so much fun, from the beautiful ceremony to the sparkler exit. I loved every minute of it. If you’re getting married and looking for a wedding photographer, get in touch.
CLICK HERE to see another socially distanced backyard wedding.