Local Beaches for Your Elopement or Intimate Wedding

Interview with Rose Lawyer of Harbor View Event Center

May 31, 2018

Located in Washburn, Wisconsin on the shores of Lake Superior, Harbor View Event Center is a waterfront venue perfect for your special day! With a spacious lakeside hall for up to 300, outdoor patio, historic cocktail lounge and grassy space for your outdoor ceremony this venue has it all!

We spoke with the venue’s general manager, Rose Lawyer, to learn all about Harbor View Event Center and what they offer for weddings and events! Enjoy!

Photographer: Ashley Roberts Photography

Tell us a little bit about yourself and Harbor View Event Center
Living in the Chequamegon Bay Area since 1996, I have called Washburn home for eight years with my husband, two kiddos (ages 10 and 14) and multiple four-footed household members. Before having children, I was the Food and Beverage Manager at the Bayfield Inn and helped facilitate countless weddings in the Bayfield area and Madeline Island. I was eager to take on a similar position in Washburn when the Harbor View Event Center was purchased, especially after seeing the facility and its lakeside location.

Harbor View Event Center overlooks the Washburn Marina and Lake Superior, and its views are simply breathtaking. There are many days that I have to close the shades to avoid being lost in a Lake Superior daydream! The bar is equally distracting, with its 24 foot Brunswick Balke Collender back bar from the 1933 World’s Fair, red back lighting, original mirrors and lakeside patio. Our main hall accommodates up to 300 patrons and includes a fountain and dance floor. With the 35 room Washburn Inn just steps away, the facility is a slam dunk for events of all sorts.

What kind of events does Harbor View Event Center host?
In addition to weddings, our facility is used for business meeting and retreats, music and performances, wellness retreats, graduation and retirement parties, celebrations of life, holiday gatherings, dances, showers, company parties, fundraisers and community events. Any occasion that brings people together is a reason to consider Harbor View Event Center!

Tell us a little bit about the space.
The venue rental includes the facility, tables, chairs, bar service (when specified), linens and cleaning, recycling/trash service and Event Captain (yours truly!). Any caterer can be chosen for meals, and we are always eager to assist coordinating DJ service/music, florists, cakes or any aspect of planning.

Do you have any recommendations for couples looking to get married in the Bayfield/Washburn area? 
Get your feet on the ground! It is too easy to do all your wedding planning online, but it’s imperative that you get into facilities and businesses and have a chance to meet the folks that will be making your day special. I love inviting perspective couples and their families into Harbor View on wedding weekends, so they can see what it’s like at ground zero. This also gives one an opportunity to learn from others’ successes with decorating and planning.

What is a piece of advice you tell all your clients?
The only obligation you have to your guests is to get married! So many couples spend hours fussing over what to serve, how much/what kind of beverages to host, what kind of goodies to offer their friends and family. This can cause unneeded emotional and financial burden to the planning process, so I like to remind people… this is YOUR day and that’s why your guests are attending, not because you had an open bar or plated dinner services.

To learn more about Harbor View Event Center visit their website and Facebook!

Featured: A Bayfield Destination Wedding

April 2, 2018

Rachael and AJ’s destination wedding took place in Bayfield, Wisconsin on October 14, 2017. Even though they live in the Twin Cities- Bayfield stole their heart years ago and was the place they wanted to get married. Andi Stempniak Photography captured their wedding day just beautifully! We hope you enjoy their wedding as much as we do!

Photo Credit: Andi Stempniak Photography

Tell us a little bit about yourselves and how you met.
When we first connected, it was safe to say neither was sure if we were the ones for each other. But the first date proved otherwise. On a cold winter night, we met for an evening of rock climbing – a sport we have continued throughout our relationship- but it went on to dinner and deep discussion as if we had known each other forever. If it were not for having to go to work the next day, we would have talked all night. It did not take long to realize we should be partners in this adventure together.

What made you choose Bayfield for your wedding?
Rachael’s family has a cabin here and has been boating the Apostle Islands for years. When Rachael introduced A.J. to Bayfield, it was love at first site! We both have traveled the world, but Bayfield still draws us like a magnet. Naturally we wanted to share this place with everyone. It is far enough to be a “destination wedding,” which makes it an extra special for all who attended.

Photo Credit: Andi Stempniak Photography

Tell us about your wedding!
We had a BBQ and bonfire the evening before at our family cabin as people arrived from around the U.S and beyond.  The day of the wedding, we had a picturesque Bayfield October fall day. The men got dressed on the family boat at the city dock just steps away from the ceremony location at the Bayfield Lakeside Pavilion while the ladies got ready at the Old Rittenhouse Inn. We decided not to see each other until Rachael walked down the aisle which made the moment all the more special. We didn’t have an officiant, instead we chose to create a personal ceremony ourselves with our friends and family sharing readings we had selected. A.J’s sisters provided vocal music. We both wrote personal vows, which we kept to ourselves until the ceremony. The love and care we put into the vows and ceremony, coupled with the built up anticipation, made for a truly memorable and heartfelt occasion.

While we had bridal party portraits, guests mingled and had cotton candy (a favorite of Rachael’s) and fresh cheese curds. Hey, we’re in Wisconsin! Including Rachael’s two daughters that were bridesmaids, two flower girls and a ring bearer, we had about 30 children in attendance! It was an absolute joy to have them.  We just made sure to kick off the reception early so everyone, including our friends who happen to be parents, could enjoy. Kid bags with playdoh and toys kept the children happy during dinner and toasts.

As the sun set and the band got underway, the rain and wind blew off of Lake Superior, which the Pavilion is literally built over. We were all cozy and dancing in the candle-lit Pavilion, so the Lake’s storm seemed like the perfect end to a perfect day.

Photo Credit: Andi Stempniak Photography

Are there any recommendations you have for someone looking to get married in the Bayfield area?
Encourage your guests to book accommodations early if they have preferences. There are plenty of options, so availability (even during peak fall colors) was not a problem if you know where to look. The Chamber of Commerce has a great website that shows availability for your dates, it was a great tool.  We emailed our “save the dates” with links to accommodations and information about Bayfield to get the information out early so guests could arrange travel well ahead of time.

One of the best things about planning a wedding in Bayfield is that there are few vendors but they are all terrific. This made decisions much easier, a huge plus when planning a destination wedding, allowing us to concentrate on the personal components. Everyone we worked with was a true professional and easy going! Our second choice was to get married in the Twin Cities where we live. That would have been even more challenging to plan and certainly more expensive while being less gorgeous and intimate.

The main thing is what they all say: keep the details in proper perspective, be a gracious host, and at the end of the day, you’ll be married to your best friend!

Vendors that were involved in your wedding day:
Photographer: Andi Stempniak Photography
Venue: Bayfield Lakeside Pavilion
Catering: Good Thyme Catering
Pies: Gourmet Garage
Hotel: Old Rittenhouse Inn
Ceremony Dress: Rosa Clara Denia
Reception Dress: Dress the Population
Bridesmaids: Calvin Klein
Hair and makeup: Mollie Kae Hair & Makeup
Tux: The Black Tux
Band: Blue Drifters
Flowers + Decor: DIY by bride and friends

Interview with Apostle Islands Cruises

January 31, 2018

Apostle Islands Cruises is a local business in Bayfield, Wisconsin that offers the opportunity for visitors to tour the Apostle Islands in style!

With daily scheduled tours, visitors are able to board the cruise ship right in town and cruise Lake Superior to tour the Islands. Apostle Islands Cruises can also be booked to take you and your wedding guests to one of the Islands for your ceremony. Keep reading to learn more about what they can offer you and your wedding guests!

Tell us about yourself and Apostle Islands Cruises.  
My name is Bryce, I am the Assistant Manager at Apostle Islands Cruises. I’m a Bayfield native who left here for big cities and returned to this paradise about 6 years ago. I’m happy to say my daily commute is 2 blocks! Apostle Islands Cruises offers tours this year from May 12 – October 21. We have non-stop, fully-narrated tours viewing the lighthouses, sea caves, historical sites, and shipwrecks in the Apostle Islands. We also offer camping and hiking shuttles, and lighthouse tours. Also, be sure to come check out our brand new boat arriving this year! Our 2018 schedule and rates can be found online.

What services does Apostle Islands Cruises provide for weddings? 
We have boats for charter mid-May to mid-October for capacities ranging from 6 to 150 passengers. We’ve had both wedding ceremonies and receptions aboard our vessels. We’ve transported entire wedding parties to specific islands for beach ceremonies. One of my favorites was a wedding that took place under the spectacular starry skies and northern lights while cruising among the Apostle Islands at night.

Photo Credit: Ps 139 Photography

Tell us a little bit about the planning process for those wanting to use your services for their wedding. 
The first few pieces of information I always ask a potential wedding charter are: date, number of passengers, how long they’d like to be on board for, and departure time. Once we have all of those details we can select an available boat and discuss the finer details. The best way to get this process going is to call our office at 715-779-3925.

What other ways do couples use Apostle Islands Cruises aside from their actual wedding day? 
We’ve actually had a lot of (adventurous) couples aboard our camping shuttles after their wedding festivities have concluded, which is a great way to just spend time with your groom or bride. Also, our scenic tours are a nice activity for families and friends to do in Bayfield in the days surrounding the wedding.

Photo Credit: Ps 139 Photography

Do you have any recommendations for couples looking to get married in Bayfield? 
Yes! Make sure you carve out some time in your plans to explore the amazing activities and sights in the area.

What is a piece of advice you tell all of your clients? 
Plan early, and just have fun on your wedding day.

To learn more about Apostle Island Cruises visit their website and Facebook!

Interview with Jamey Ritter of Bemused Design & Photography

January 5, 2018

We interviewed with local photographer and graphic designer Jamey Ritter, the owner of Bemused Design & Photography, to learn all about her businesses and how they intertwine together! From designing vintage-style wedding posters to photographing weddings and elopements, Jamey has many options for any couple getting married in the area. Enjoy!

Tell us a little bit about yourself and Bemused Design & Photography

I’ve been a published photographer since 1992 and a graphic designer since 1995. I can’t imagine giving either up. Creating in photography and design keeps me engaged and passionate about both. 

 

How has your business evolved over the years?
I’ve come to concentrate on the things I love to do and am good at. I really enjoy focusing on wedding photography and family portrait sessions. I dabble occasionally in newborn photography but, that’s way more exhausting than a whole day shooting a wedding. As for design, I’m finding myself spending more and more time and energy on my line of vintage poster designs. I literally dream about them and get really excited to release new designs to the world.

What is your most rewarding and challenging part of wedding photography?

I get really nervous the day before the wedding. I know that it’s a once-in-a-lifetime event and I get worried about not making the wedding couple happy. Once I start shooting, I’m fine, but there are times I’d rival the bride for nervous butterflies.

 

What is your most rewarding part of graphic designing for weddings?
I LOVE designing my custom wedding posters. I totally geek out over wedding dresses, veils and wedding jewelry. It’s also such a unique gift, I like seeing their faces when they realize they are featured in the design.

What is one of your favorite moments to capture during a wedding day?
My favorite moments are the ones in which the bride and groom are being themselves and don’t even realize they’re being photographed. A sweet smile or gentle caress that truly represents who they are as a couple and the photos they love and treasure the most. 

What advice would you give to couples who are in the midst of planning their wedding?

I’ve been to many weddings lately where they’ve added non-traditional elements. One couple actually mixed beer as part of their unity ceremony. Brewing beer was something they loved to do together. I encourage all couples to bring elements like that into they wedding ceremony. I’ve shot pilots that went to the airport for photos and outdoors enthusiasts who paddled themselves to the reception. Make it memorable.


To learn more about Bemused Design & Photography visit their website and Facebook!

Featured: A Bayfield Intimate Wedding

December 15, 2017

Most of the couples that get married in Bayfield fully embrace everything we have to offer! One way of doing this is by making a whole weekend out of your wedding, instead of just one quick day. With many guests coming here for the first time, show them around and recommend your favorite things to do! This is exactly what David and Efrie did for their wedding!

With just 24 guests, David and Efrie had an incredibly memorable wedding weekend spending time with family, taking in the Apostle Islands and even giving beautiful local gifts in gift bags to each guest. Read all about their wedding and how it came together so beautifully!

Photographer: Ps 139 Photography

Tell us a little bit about yourselves and how you met.
David is a computer programmer, originally from North Carolina, and Elizabeth (nickname: Efrie) is an architect, originally from Milwaukee. We met almost 10 years ago through Match.com while living in New York. Since then, we’ve lived in Connecticut, Michigan, and Philadelphia (where we live now).

Our first date was a concert in New York, but the most memorable part was playing several very competitive rounds of Connect 4 at a dive bar, where we went for drinks before the concert.

What made you choose Bayfield for your wedding?
David grew up spending his summers at his grandfather’s lake house in the Poconos, which is a place that is very special and important to his family. He proposed while we were hiking around the lake.

Efrie’s family has a similarly special place: her grandmother’s cabin on the Brule River. It made sense to us that in officially merging our families, each of these very special places would be a part of the festivities. One of the highlights of trips to Brule for the last 16 years has been a night in Bayfield for dinner at Wild Rice Restaurant (we missed their first year they were open), and Efrie and her mom started talking about how beautiful the location would be for a wedding from the very first time they saw the restaurant, so it sprang to mind immediately when we were brainstorming possible wedding locations.

Photographer: Ps 139 Photography

Tell us about your your wedding!
Our weather was fairy-tale perfect, and we were so excited to be able to share our wedding with our very small party of 24 guests, for most of whom it was their first time to Bayfield. They all left stunned at how beautiful the area is (which is why we picked Bayfield for our location!) We kicked off the weekend with a champagne cruise around the Apostle Islands, giving all our guests an intro to the local history, with delicious appetizers from Ashland Baking Co. We followed the cruise with a dinner at Ethel’s, teaching everyone about the very important food group of cheese curds.

The day of our wedding, we spent the morning eating a luxurious breakfast from Pinehurst Inn, and then Efrie was whisked away to get ready. Our guests spent the morning and afternoon enjoying all that Bayfield has to offer – some went sailing, others went hiking, and some just strolled around town browsing the shops. Our wedding ceremony took place in the evening on the back deck of Wild Rice, and we were thrilled to find out that Mary Rice was actually having dinner at the restaurant that night!

Efrie’s brother Dave and his wife Megan conducted our ceremony. One of the most touching parts was a piece we adopted from the Quaker tradition (which has a very important place in the history of our current home state, Pennsylvania), where everyone attending is given the opportunity to impart blessings and words of wisdom to the couple. Hearing the best wishes and love from everyone was definitely a highlight of the night!

After we were introduced for the first time as Mr. and Mrs. Escott, we celebrated with a delicious meal at Wild Rice. We also had each of our guests write us notes to put into boxes with bottles of wine that we will open and drink at each of our milestone anniversaries, so that we can experience their words of wisdom and blessings at our first year, fifth year, tenth year, and twenty-fifth year of marriage.

Photographer: Ps 139 Photography

Are there any recommendations you have for someone looking to get married in the Bayfield area?
Start your planning early! Everyone is incredibly helpful and excited about making all your dreams for your big day come true, but it’s important to have enough time for all the plans to come to fruition (and to have the time to work in all the extra ideas once they start popping up). Also, it’s a really good idea to talk to people at all the restaurants and B&Bs for recommendations on who to use for what — we never would have found our amazing florist (Kelly) if we had only looked at business listings.

Vendors
Photographer: Ps 139 Photography
Flowers: Kelly & Crew Designs
Groom’s party lodging: Rittenhouse Inn
Bride’s party lodging: Pinehurst Inn
Dinner and ceremony: Wild Rice Restaurant (Closed)
Rehearsal dinner: Ethel’s Restaurant
Rehearsal cruise: Apostle Island Cruises
Catering for cruise: Ashland Baking Company
Goodies in guest gift bags: Erickson Orchards and Country Store (bottle of cider), The Fat Radish (voucher for a cup of coffee), The Candy Shoppe (voucher for an ice cream cone), Apostle Islands Booksellers (souvenir photo books)

 

Interview with Sharon Zanto of As You Wish Events

November 30, 2017

Many people cannot wait to begin wedding planning, but not everyone realizes how much work goes into planning a wedding or how to plan a wedding! That is where wedding planners come in! A wedding planner is your guide, planner, designer, organizer, budget-keeper, inspiration, and so much more, from the very beginning through the entire process.

We spoke with Sharon, owner of As You Wish Events here in Bayfield, Wisconsin to learn all about her business and her advice for couples planning a wedding!

Enjoy!


Photographer: Focus Photography

Tell us a little bit about yourself and As You Wish Events.
Hi! My name is Sharon Zanto, owner and lead event planner of, “As You Wish Events”, which is a full-service event design and wedding-planning company offering a variety of packages to fit your wedding or event-specific needs. Our collaborative approach of producing cohesive events that are inspired by you, allows us to make each wedding or event unique and distinctive. It is our belief that events are defined by the personalized details that share the story of the couple or host with all of the guests. Our services combine planning and execution with distinctive design and styling to create a once-in-a-lifetime celebration.

Photographer: Focus Photography

How did you get into wedding planning?
I have worked in the world of corporate events for years, and loved to create beautiful events for friends and family as well. I decided to open my own business due to my love of event planning, and the satisfaction I receive in seeing my clients delighted with the outcome of their special event!

What is your favorite thing to do during the wedding off-season?
My favorite thing to do in the wedding off-season are more events!! I love to plan Holiday parties, Birthday, and Anniversary, and many more! Doing a different type of event is refreshing after the wedding season. I am also an avid reader, walker, and foodie…so that is always lovely to do on my down time!

What is your favorite part of a wedding to plan?
My favorite part of the wedding to plan, is working with the couple on what the vision is for their special day! Each wedding has such a different look and feel to it, so it’s exciting to see the individual outcome!
Photographer: Focus Photography
What advice would you give to couples who are in the midst of planning their wedding?

My advice for couples in the midst of planning their wedding is to stay true to their vision, budget, and remember the reason for getting married!! In the end, if you leave the details to your wedding planner, and relax and enjoy the day, you will be a married couple, and that is the most important thing!

 

To learn more about As You Wish Events, visit their website!

Featured: A Madeline Island Wedding

July 3, 2017

Bayfield, the Apostle Islands and Lake Superior have an incredible amount of magic and charm to them. Many of the couples getting married in the area feel this and are drawn to spend their special day here!

Michele and Rick are one of those couples, who could not see their wedding day happening anywhere else but here. We hope you enjoy reading all about their beautiful story and their wedding on Madeline Island.


Photo Credit: Happily Ever After

Tell us a little bit about yourselves and how you met.
Rick and I met in early 2006 on Match.com. 😉 He was recently divorced, and I had a brick-and-mortar business that basically consumed every waking hour of my life. One of my staff members suggested (actually… insisted) that I join Match to “get a life.” So I did. And after six months of rolling my eyes at the concept, I received a lovely message from this very thoughtful man who wrote well and spoke of his love for the water. It was “best friendship” at first sight… We talked non-stop for hours – weeks – and then one day that little *spark* happened. The rest, as they say, is history.


Photo Credit: Happily Ever After

What made you choose Madeline Island for your wedding?
While our relationship began where we live in Minnesota, it was built on the water. Rick has been sailing the Apostle Islands for (now) over 20 years. When we met, he showed me photos of his sailboat and the islands. I was obviously intrigued, but having grown up and establishing my love of the water on Lake Minnetonka (and several stints on the Pacific Ocean), I figured Lake Superior was just another body of water to love.

That’s an understatement.

When I first arrived at the marina with Rick late in the evening on May 19, 2006, it took my breath away. I had never seen so many stars. The sound of the breezes across the water and the clinking of the lines against the masts. I was instantly hooked. We sat in the cockpit of the sailboat with glasses of wine and watched the stars until the wee hours of the morning (something we still do to this day). The entire weekend was “charmed.” There were so many moments where I wondered who this guy had made deals with in order to orchestrate so many wonderful moments. Now I know. Rick is an absolutely wonderful man to begin with, and he was very excited to show me his Happy Place. “His” Lake Superior. But, as you know, Lake Superior “speaks” to you. She had called to him years before, and she “greeted me by name” the moment I arrived (and I’m pretty sure Her first words were, “What took you so long?!”).

We’ve been answering Her call together ever since. Almost every weekend during the summer months on our boat, and several times throughout the winter when we “need” to visit her to re-charge our winter-weary batteries. We adore “Mother Superior” and everything that surrounds her.

But I digress… Why Madeline Island? On more than one occasion, we saw weddings happening on the island as we cruised by on our boat. Each time, they took our breath away. Weddings have a way of doing that, but to us – the water lovers that we are – there just seemed to be something extra magical about it.

The business I mentioned earlier was a wedding and event design company. We designed, decorated, flowered, and foofed over 1,500 fabulous weddings and events of all sizes. As much as I loved the many venues we worked at in the Twin Cities, there just didn’t seem to be one that was right for us. Neither of us wanted a “big” wedding. We just wanted it to be “us.”

We started tossing around the idea of having our wedding in Bayfield, and fell in love with the idea. We contacted on of our favorite Bayfield chefs to see if he was available, and as luck would have it, his daughter was getting married on the same date that we had chosen. We then toyed with the idea of getting married on Madeline. Called a few places, looked around a bit, and ended up falling in love with The Inn on Madeline Island after a brief chat with Susan. We could immediately envision our wedding there, and everything just fell into place.

Tell us about your wedding!
Knowing we’d have to “drag” 75 of our closest friends and family members all the way up there, we put together a website that listed all the details of our wedding, and every imaginable resource in Bayfield and on the Island: hotels, B&Bs and inns, restaurants, shopping, transportation, all of our favorite spots – you name it. We wanted to make sure people had plenty of options for planning their trip, and that everyone felt like they “knew the area” when they arrived so they’d enjoy themselves more while they were there.

We told everyone it was a Casual Island theme: Sun dresses and sandals, Hawaiian shirts and khakis. We arranged for a pizza party at The Inn, and enjoyed greeting our guests at that gathering spot as they arrived on the island.

We also planned a special little surprise for our guests. On a recent trip to Black River Harbor, we met a woman who came down to the water to “wish the Lake Goodnight” each night. We loved the way she appreciated the Lake, and decided to incorporate that appreciation into our wedding. We were also lucky enough to have four members of the Pipes and Drums of Thunder Bay agree to come and play for our wedding when we reached out to them on a long shot. It was the best-kept secret ever! We were so excited!

We orchestrated the ceremony around the bagpipers. Starting with our beautiful flower girls and ring bearer (our nieces and nephew), Rick’s three sons, and a selection of songs that we had chosen beforehand, we walked down the winding aisle, through all of our friends and family, and “met” down at the end of the dock to have our first look and a brief moment together. As planned… We turned around on the dock to face our guests as the bagpipers began to play. One of the highlights of our wedding (for us) was watching our guests’ faces as they started hearing the bagpipes and wondering what was going on. As they bagpipers marched around the building, everyone smiled and stood up. There were cheers and clapping, and lots of pictures being taken. It was such a treat!


Photo Credit: Happily Ever After

After they played several pieces, they piped as we walked up the aisle (dock) together and stood before our longtime friend, Captain Dave, who married us. We then enjoyed an amazing dinner (Prime Rib and Lake Superior Lake Trout with Lemon Burre Blanc) prepared by The Inn, and then promptly celebrated our “sweet luck” with a gorgeous Sweet Table and ‘Tuxedo’ wedding cake – all prepared by April and company at Country Cake Cupboard – one of my absolute favorite Twin Cities bakeries. We had worked together on countless weddings over the years, and I just love her work. There were a few things I had my heart set on for our wedding, and April’s Tuxedo cake with Italian Mocha Cream filling was one of them.

We were very fortunate to have a lot of help with preparations and set up… Everything from the absolutely incredible invitations that my talented friend, Gina designed and created, to the collection of silver trays that held all the sweets on our dessert buffet, to the photos and music we shared during the wedding, and even the Tiki torches that were set out just before sunset. It was all relaxed, casual, “island-y” and fun.

At 7:03 p.m., the bagpipers again began playing “unexpectedly” as the sun started to set. We all gathered at the beach and “wished The Lake goodnight” as they played. It was magical.

As the evening progressed, we chatted, hugged, mingled, and even danced a little. We felt so lucky to be able to celebrate our special day in such a special place. And we still celebrate our special day each time we come to Madeline Island or see “our” beach.

Photo Credit: Happily Ever After

Are there any recommendations you have for someone looking to get married in the Bayfield area? 
YES!!! Spend some time in the area if possible before your wedding. Visit a few times. Explore a little. Find the things that you love most about the area and incorporate those things into your wedding.

Hire a professional wedding coordinator who knows the area, knows the best vendors to hire for your wedding, and knows your day-of Wish List well! I can’t state this strongly enough! After doing as much wedding work as I had done over the years, I just figured it would all come naturally when it came time to plan my own wedding. And it did. But there are SO MANY reasons NOT to do it all on your own, I don’t even know where to begin.

Do it. Splurge. Hire a professional coordinator that you can trust to “watch over” all the little details that will make your wedding day the day you dreamed of… Whether it’s making sure you get your much-needed skim latte with one raw sugar the morning of the wedding, keeping an eye on “those” family members, or making sure the gardenias get tucked in your hair just before you walk down the aisle… Let your coordinator handle the details so your only “job” is to thoroughly enjoy every moment of your day. xo

Interview with Annie Lawrence of Bottle Rocket Photography

May 4, 2017

The saying “A picture is worth a thousand words” is completely accurate when you see Bottle Rocket Photography‘s work! Annie Lawrence is the owner and incredible artist behind Bottle Rocket Photography, based in northern Wisconsin but also servicing Colorado, Minnesota, Wisconsin and beyond.

We interviewed Annie to find out all about her photography business, the artist behind the camera and her recommendations for your Bayfield wedding! Enjoy!

Photo Credit: Bottle Rocket Photography

Tell us a little bit about yourself and Bottle Rocket Photography.
Bottle Rocket Photography is me, Annie Lawrence, a 30-something, mother, wife, coffee lover & adventure seeker. I have almost always had a camera in my hand, but it was in high school that my love for photography was really sparked in the dark room. I would skip other classes to hold on to any extra time I could, to see those portraits take shape under a red light. It was always portraits that truly moved me. I love the challenge of trying to catch a real moment with someone, or making them feel comfortable enough with me to let that veil drop that we all carry around with us. I started Bottle Rocket Photography in 2012, and am grateful every day that I chose this path.

How did you get into wedding photography?
I jumped into wedding photography by accident. When I started my business it was geared more toward family & children. But, after assisting photographers at several weddings I knew this is what I wanted to do. From the first couple that shared their love story with me, and for every love story after, I am honored to document such intimate & life changing moments.

Photo Credit: Bottle Rocket Photography

What is the most challenging aspect about wedding photography?
For me the most challenging aspect of being a wedding photographer isn’t the wedding day, but what follows. Wedding days are so fun for me, sharing in the emotion with the couples (I cry at nearly every wedding), watching the joy, the nerves, and excitement make wedding days easy. But the days & weeks after are more challenging, to find balance not only as a wedding photographer, but as a mother, and wife. After the wedding is over, there are still hours and hours of editing, blogging, and uploading left to do. Without balance it’s easy to lose the passion and love for the job that is necessary to produce high quality work.  

How would you describe your style?
I could consider my photography style to be a mix of unposed posing (if that makes any sense), artistic and documentary. I am inspired by genuine people and natural beauty. I believe photographs are meant to be timeless and last a lifetime.

Photo Credit: Bottle Rocket Photography

What is included in your most common wedding photography service? 
All of my standard wedding packages include an engagement session. Basically we hang out, get to know each other, and make pretty photos along the way. Also included in standard packages are your professionally edited photos posted on a private online gallery for easy downloading with print release. I also offer custom & elopement packages! My goal is to give one-of-a-kind photos that tell your story.

What advice would you offer to couples looking to get married in the Bayfield area?
Bayfield has so much to offer. Get out and explore! Get married on a boat, on an island, in one of northern Wisconsin’s gorgeous state parks, in an orchard, or at a local venue! So many options, so find a place that best suits your personality and sense of adventure! Last but definitely not least, give yourself plenty of time to plan, you only get to plan your wedding once, make it a fun process not a stressful one. Oh, one more thing: hire local!

Photo Credit: Bottle Rocket Photography

To learn more about Bottle Rocket Photography visit their website and Facebook page!

Incorporating Lake Superior into your Wedding

April 18, 2017

Let’s be honest, if you are getting married in the Bayfield area you have a love for Lake Superior and the beautiful outdoors! What better way to celebrate her beauty than by incoporating Lake Superior throughout your wedding!

We have gathered some of our favorite ways to do just that. Whether you are getting married in Bayfield or on Madeline Island, or up on the north shore of Lake Superior, you can take advantage of the beauty of the lake! Read ahead to hear and see our ideas.

Food
One of the many things visitors love about Bayfield is the fresh fish you can enjoy at every restaurant in the area. Many couples choose to include fresh whitefish or trout somewhere on their menu- whether it’s smoked trout as an appetizer or whitefish tacos for dinner.


Lake Superior Whitefish Provençal made by Good Thyme Catering, Events & Lodging

Ceremony
Getting married on the shores of Lake Superior offers many possibilities. Whether you’d like sand under your toes, to be in a grassy area beneath a stand of willow trees or standing on a cliff overlooking the water, we have all these options right here. Or, you could even get married on Lake Superior in a sailboat!

Take a look at our Bayfield Weddings Venue Chart to find all of the traditional venues along with beach/ primitive spots!

Photographer: Jaimee Morse / Venue: Superior Rentals / Coordinator: Lace & Brass Events

Decorations
Rocks and driftwood gathered from the shores of Lake Superior make perfect decorations for your lakeside wedding! Whether you are going for a more natural look or getting crafty, you can gather materials right here where you are getting married.

Photographer: Jeff Loves Jessica Photography / Coordinator: Lace & Brass Events

Engagement Session
Spend some time on the shores of Lake Superior for your engagement session. Not only will it provide a gorgeous setting for your photos but you could use them for your Save the Dates. Your Bayfield wedding will mean that much more to you and your guests when they see your beautiful photos inviting them to join in on the fun.

Photographer: Narrowleaf Photography / Planner: Simply Gypsy Events

Jewelry
Looking for jewelry or rings that are a little different than the norm? Bayfield is home to a number of incredibly talented artists who could custom make your wedding day jewelry and/or wedding rings! How beautiful would it be to have have your earrings, necklace or ring be made with a Lake Superior agate?!


Lake Superior Agate Ring made by Silverwaves Jewelry

Take a look at our resources and inspiration page to help plan your Bayfield Wedding!