Destination Weddings/Real Weddings

Nautical New England Foodie Wedding (With Lobster Rolls!)

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I hope all you lovelies one day experience the magic of Maine. The Northeastern most state in New England is a wild, seafood paradise. Lobster shacks, rustic lodges, charming old-timey New England homes, and oh the oysters! If I haven’t yet got you booking your flight, this charming seaside wedding should do the trick.

Nestled in Boothbay, Dana and Jess found a magical nautical escape for their friends and family. Hoping to whisk their guests far away from New York (a good six hour drive from the city) the couple made their wedding a destination weekend of sorts. Putting on a rustic, sea-loving celebration that encouraged mingling beyond just the hotel hallway hello.

Their wedding featured a casual dinner of mouth-watering barbecue, fresh oysters and of course, lobster rolls! The informal dinner allowed their guests to really party in the cozy space. Filling the decor and weekend with personal details, the couple managed to let their guests get to know them as a couple and each other, all captured so sweetly by Let’s Frolic Together.

And don’t miss the awe-inspiring aerial video by the groom at the end (who also wrote a book expanding on the seaside theme of the wedding, Appreciating Oysters, uh hello great way to commemorate your wedding!)

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Our Love Story

We met while Tindering. Success story! We exchanged texts to set up the first date, but it actually took us a couple weeks to meet in person because of schedules. The banter was there from the get-go and was even better in person.

I had a few ideas about how to propose but knew how good Jess was at figuring things out. I wanted a unique experience befitting to things Jess loved. I had a custom aquamarine engagement ring designed by Tracy Matthews that I kept a secret for months.

Jess planned a series of weekend trips for my birthday month and had an inkling that I may propose. At the start of the month, I did something a little different with my Instagram feed. I hid letters in images that created a puzzle (this is the full collage) Jess had seen a letter in one of the images early on, but I played off the reasoning behind it.

We were at a cabin in the Catskills starting a bonfire after a hike. I asked Jess if she wanted work on the puzzle with me. At first, she said no. LOL! After a short time, we went through it and she had all the clues in place and, after some nudging, she found the question.

Part way through she had a realization that maybe it would be a proposal. When she realized it actually was, her face lit up with joy and disbelief. I got down on one knee and brought out the ring. It was a fantastic moment and one we’ll never forget.

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The Destination

We chose Maine for its inspiring environment and gorgeous coastlines. It was a place we had visited and were always in awe of the surroundings we were in. Living in NYC, we wanted a change of pace for the festivities, but also for our friends and family, many of whom had never been to Maine.

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The Venue

Jess really fell in love with Linekin Bay Resort. The one big item we both wanted was easy access for guests to come in, hunker in, and spend the weekend in one place having fun. Plus, significantly, we wanted to see our guests beyond the blur of the wedding ceremony and reception.

A big reason we did Linekin was we wanted our family and friends to all be able to hang out and meet each other beyond the confines of a hotel room. Too often, we’ve been to weddings and you don’t really get to see the people you want to beyond a quick bite to eat or a hello in a hallway. It was something we were keenly aware that we didn’t want. We loved that people could come into Linekin at any point, hunker in, and just have fun, and that’s exactly what it was.

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Favorite Moments

Having all of our friends and family in one spot for the whole weekend. Our first look was so good. We wrote our own vows and the ceremony was the first time we shared them. It was so much fun.

After our ceremony, a few boats on the water all sounded their horns in congratulations. A harbor seal swam just offshore during our rehearsal dinner. Taking pictures under the Milky Way. Friends jumped into the ocean at night.

There were so many more fantastic memories that it’s tough not to say the whole weekend was a favorite moment.

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The Photography & Videography

It was by lucky chance that we ended up with the perfect match of Let’s Frolic Together and Jasmine. Her style was the elegant, casual flair that they both loved, rather than formal “stiff” images that they often saw for weddings. Jasmine captured the pure essence of the moment and the surroundings, without having to overly compose the people or the environment. Hearts.

When we were looking for a photographer, Dana remembered that he had been a follower of her fantastic Instagram feed, but knew she was in San Diego. They figured it was worth a shot to get in touch and see what it might entail for her to make a trek to Maine and document the fun. It so happened that the week of our wedding she had an opening and had always wanted to visit Maine. After a few emails and a video chat, it was beyond a doubt that it was meant to be. The rest was history.

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The Food & Reception

For the food, we didn’t want a typical sit down meal. We both felt that the best parts of the wedding are when people are mixing, mingling, drinking, and dancing. The formal sit down usually takes a lot away from that so we went with a BBQ food truck along with small plates and finger foods throughout the early evening. We also loved the local flair and added in special cocktails, oysters, and whoopie pies from the area as part of the festivities.

We selected playlists of our favorite music to play throughout the night. We really didn’t enjoy the typical wedding standards played by DJs and bands as it didn’t fit our personalities. We wanted music that people would enjoy from pre-ceremony, through cocktail hour, all the way into the night.

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The Details

Dana designed some of the details from the invites to the cake toppers (two custom Funko Pop! figurines) and brought his drone along for epic aerial video and photos.

We kept our decor simple with subtle floral accents for the tables and the natural landscaping (the ceremony on the oceanfront is gorgeous by itself) and strung lights throughout the venue to highlight the already beautiful surroundings.

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Advice to Other Couples

Keep true to yourself and stick to the basics. One thing we found from talking to other couples after their weddings was that they wished they hadn’t spent so much time on the peripherals which, in the end, guests didn’t really notice. Things like table center bouquets and extravagant decorations.

We focused on what we and our guests wanted to do – eat well, drink better, and dance all night. And the build-up is months or more for a day or two of celebration. Enjoy the journey and, even moreso, enjoy the day. There will be hiccups, even with the best of plans, but surrounding yourself with the people you love and enjoying the celebration is what it’s all about.

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The Honeymoon

We did a “Halfsiemoon”. We had so many guests who had never been to Maine that we wanted to show those who stayed some of our favorite spots around the state – Acadia National Park, lobster shacks, hikes, etc. It was well worth it to get that extra time in with so many people that came out to celebrate us.

We’re planning a true honeymoon down the line. It’s a great way to keep the buzz going after an epic wedding celebration and to start the new chapter of your lives together.

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