Rachel and Patrick met in May 2013 at a rodeo. Their love quickly blossomed, culminating in a magical proposal.

The Proposal

Rachel’s grandparents have a number of cottages on Lake Michigan and every year her family gathers from all over the country to spend a week together. Being one of her favorite places, Patrick knew this would be the ideal location and chose this special week to propose so that the entire family could take part in the celebration. The couple shares a mutual love for Lake Michigan so they took a walk to Rachel’s favorite spot on the beach. They climbed the sand dune leading to a lookout of an amazing panoramic view of the lake, and the Muskegon lighthouse. They sat there for a while soaking up the scenery and admiring the gorgeous view until Patrick explained that he had a headache and wanted to go back to the cottage. He stood up and when Rachel turned around he was on one knee holding the ring he had chosen for her. Rachel was completely shocked and elated so after sharing the moment together they hurried back to surprise the family with their engagement. Having all of Rachel’s family present made the day all the more special and “it could not have been more perfect.”

The Day & Design

Rachel and Patrick’s wedding featured many personal and unique touches. Rachel’s father passed away when she was 9 years old and she was concerned about having a hard time getting through the entire ceremony without him. The couple contemplated creative ways to make this difficult situation a little easier. After the initial pastor became unavailable an idea came to mind. Rachel’s father had three men that were his very best friends. She grew up around them her whole life and shared a close relationship with each of them. Rachel decided to ask her “Uncle” Gonzo to perform the ceremony. Side note, “Uncle” Gonzo is a firefighter and truck driver, not a pastor. Despite some initial nervousness and hesitation he graciously agreed to become ordained and officiated their ceremony. Uncle Gonzo, Rachel’s father’s other two best friends, her grandfather, and Patrick’s father crafted a wedding ceremony to be remembered. This very personal touch ensured that the day would go smoothly. Rachel and Patrick explained that “it was so special to have the people who are the most important in their lives” surround them on the best day of their lives. Rachel’s father’s presence was felt throughout the entire wedding day.

The Couple’s Advice

Take it all in! It is so easy to say and so hard to do. Enjoy the planning as much as possible, even during the stress, because it is all over so fast! At some point during your reception take a moment, just the two of you, and look at how everything has come together. You’ll be surprised at just how incredible your special day is. It goes by in an amazing, beautiful whirlwind. Enjoy every second of it!

First Dance Song

“I’ll Be”
by Edwin McCain

The Pro’s

Photographer Mani’s Photography
Hair Bombshell Beauty Lounge (Samantha Snoeyink)
Makeup Knockout Agency (Lynnae)
Dress Bridal Elegance
Bakery Sams Club
Flowers Linda Younker
DJ Complete Weddings & Events

Colors | Blush, Gold, White

Outdoor Weddings Grand Rapids