It's very rare that I'm invited to photograph the wedding from beginning to end, so I knew that I was in for a treat when they asked me to be there starting at 6am. Honestly, I was expecting them to be just waking up or getting out of the shower. What I wasn't expecting was for everyone to be mostly dressed and camera-ready, which was exactly what happened. Both the Rachel and Erin were up and ready for action. Rachel and her bridesmaids were so much fun and there was never a dull moment. They got ready in Rachel's childhood home. What I loved most about it was that Christmas decorations were still hanging, which made for some lovely pictures, both inside and out. Erin and his groomsmen started off their morning ready for the day by sharing some great cigars. They got ready in Rachel and Erin's new house. There were some lovely and touching moments, but my favorite is with Erin and his father sharing a moment on the porch with some cigars. One of my favorite pictures is the black and white image of Erin's dad lighting Erin's cigar.
After such a lovely ceremony at Mt. Carmel Church, we ventured off to some of Rachel and Erin's favorite locations in Altoona. Of course the first stop was Penn State's Altoona campus. While it was a bit cold, the bridal party did a wonderful job performing in front of the camera. They were not shy to say the least. Between all the bridesmaids lifting Erin up for a picture and all the groomsmen cheering Rachel on as she took shots from a flask, both groups were have the best time. After leaving the Altoona campus we headed towards Gospel Hill where scenes were breathtaking. Putting the amazing views aside, I really enjoyed taking the bridal party along the cobblestone road full of fallen leaves. This created a nice fall look for their winter wedding. Departing Gospel Hill, we had one more stop on our agenda, to Rachel and Erin's new house as husband and wife. This stop was my favorite because Erin literally lifted Rachel off her feet and whisked her away inside their new home.
Now off to the reception at Stoney Point Events. At this time I was fully aware and prepared for some lots fun and craziness. What I didn't expect was the best speech I would ever hear. Rachel's sister and Maid-of-Honor delivered the best speech, or should I say rapped the best speech to the tune of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. I don't know which was crazier, her cool lyrics or dance moves. This was indeed a great start to a wonderful evening. During the entire evening the dance floor was packed. But only one person stole the show in my eyes. Rachel's grandmother did a solo dance to Low by Flo Rida. This was a tradition for her to show off her dance moves at her granddaughter's wedding, and what a joy it was to experience all the joy, excitement, love, and energy the entire dance floor shared as Rachel's grandmother dance the entire song and was getting "Low", indeed. And to end the night, all of the guests sent Rachel and Erin off with a sparker exit.
So much fun, joy, excitement, and love from the beginning to end. I'm so honored and excited to have shared this day with Rachel and Erin. I want to give a huge congratulations and to new couple and wish them many many years of laughter and togetherness.