A Virgin Gorda destination wedding // Dawn and Brian

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 “Who’s wedding is it anyhow?”  I bet a lot of couples get to a point in their planning when this question arises, and it’s unlikely to come up when everyone’s happy.  It’s hard planning a Virgin Gorda destination wedding as this requires great diplomatic navigation of potentially rough waters. You  have your vision of the perfect wedding but will it line up with Auntie Margaret’s idea of a good time?  Sometimes you have to just throw it all out the window, tell everyone how it’s going to be, and hope for the best. Brian and Dawn are two of the most humble people we know and it was fitting that they should tuck their marriage celebration betwixt a week-long group adventure in the British Virgin Islands to deflect the attention from them.  They chose well because every single one of the 32 people they invited left their kids, jobs and normal lives behind to celebrate with them… and what an amazing week it was!!

For those of you who don’t know, Brian and Dawn are very close friends of ours. Brian is a fellow wedding photographer, we were lucky enough to have him shoot our destination wedding in Thailand and he shoots for Viera Photographics often. So it was extremely special for us to finally be able to repay him for the amazing work he did photographing our wedding. Guests stayed for a week in Virgin Gorda and took over several properties within walking distance of each other.  We all spent the days leading up to the wedding sailing, snorkeling, drinking beer, making community meals, telling stories, laughing, listening to music and exploring the natural beauties of the island. Everyone had so much fun together, and I don’t think I have laughed that much ever in my life. When the wedding day did arrive, it was perfect;  intimate, emotional, beautiful.  I’m certain everyone had at least a few tears pooled up by the time uncle Mike pronounced them husband and wife (I know Jaime did and I have the photos to prove it).  As the wedding photographer and groomsman (which was a first for me), I had a whole new experience. When Brian asked me to be a groomsman as well as photograph their Virgin Gorda destination wedding, I have to say I was not sure if it was going to work out. He promised that I could have a camera, and all I had to do was walk down the aisle then I could move to wherever I wanted to. I have to say, I was a sight in my suit and tie, with 4 cameras tangled around my neck. I was so involved with taking photos, I forgot I was a groomsman. I remember vaguely Jaime calling me and telling me to line up – next thing you know the song is ending and no one has even moved. Suffice to say, we all made it down the aisle – we just had to repeat the song over again! 🙂 Brian said it was exactly what he imagined it was going to be. The British Virgin Islands are an extremely special place that we’d love to return to.  The small size and slow pace of the island combined with welcoming locals and beautiful, ocean-front national parks made it hard to return to the real world at the end of the week.  I think we can all say that it was a trip of a lifetime that we will never forget. We are so blessed to have been a part of it.

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