The One with the Hawk and an Alpaca | Saint Joseph’s University Chapel & The Atrium at the Curtis Center | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Leigh Anne & Andrew’s Wedding Day Highlights
What do you get when two Hawks have a love for alpacas? I have no idea, but I’m sure the crowd at Leigh Anne and Andrew’s wedding celebration could finish that joke for us!
Andrew is one classy guy and one of the only people I know who is able to tie a bowtie on the first try. When we arrived to Andrew’s room it was already teaming with guys putting on their Black Tux groomsmen wear and Andrew donning his J. Crew suit. Together they tied ties, joked, and got ready for the day. The continual trend throughout Andrew getting ready, was constant incredible laughter. There was not a single moment the entire morning when someone wasn’t laughing. I don’t mean a chuckle either. I mean deep, soulful, jubilant laughter. Andrew was pretty calm, cool, and collected and even introduced me to his love of Alpacas. The Alpaca is one of Andrew’s favorite animals, and through the wedding weekend, Alpaca statues and reference made an appearance. The men exited for the ceremony in their private Sterling Limos ride.
At the same time Leigh Anne was surrounded by her girls, laughter, and mimosas! As everyone had their hair and makeup done by Beautiful Brides Philly laugher filled the air and a sense of anticipation for the events of the day. Leigh Anne’s Pronovias wedding gown from Bijou Bridal hung in the bridal suite watching over the getting ready activity. Once hair and make up was complete, everyone joined Leigh Anne on the bed at the Sheraton Society Hill for a few photos to show off their matching bridesmaids button ups and gave the bride a kind toast and a bit of married advice to keep Leigh Anne on her toes for the rest of the day.
With fresh mimosas in hand the bridesmaids slipped into their Bill Levkoff dresses from Bijou Bridal. To keep the anticipation of the day going, Leigh Anne decided to surprise her bridesmaids with the final look and only had her her mother and sister help dress her in her wedding attire. After the last button was buttoned, her veil was in place, and her Badgley Mischka shoes were slide on, Leigh Anne revealed her head to toe look to the bridesmaids. They gave cheers, laughter, and tears when she entered the sitting room in the bridal suite. With everyone ready to go, Leigh Anne and her girls boarded the Cescaphe Trolley trolley to head to Chapel of St. Joseph located at St. Joseph University. After a trolley ride filled with laughter and jokes, Leigh Anne was ready to see Andrew.
Andrew stood at the alter at his alma mater and when Leigh Anne entered his jaw dropped. As she walked down the aisle escorted by her mother, there wasn’t a dry eye in the church. You could feel the emotion and happiness as she joined Andrew at the alter. The ceremony was personal, sweet, and surrounded by their friends and family they sealed their bond to each other with a kiss. After the ceremony, and while family portraits were being taken, their guests enjoyed Philly Pretzel Factory snack pretzels outside the church serenaded by the sweet sound of church bells.
We completed family photos in the chapel space with enough time to wish the bridal party across campus (read: hustle with no heels on) to some of the iconic places that the newlyweds used to stroll when they attended college. Saint Joseph’s University sits on a gorgeous campus with bountiful backdrops for photos. This particular courtyard we landed in on our walk is full of grey stone, wooden doors and staircases. The ambiance of the location and the grey stone off created the most perfect setting for Leigh Anne’s white dress and Overhill Florist bouquet and Andrew’s black tux. They were certainly a site on campus that day!
The trolley ride to the second location provided the bridal party just enough time to toast the newlyweds and share a tray of pretzels with cheese sauce and mustard. A perfectly Philadelphian way to get dropped off on the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art for a handful of iconic photos. And though I adore the “formal” photos we created of the newlyweds in this location, I think my favorite is a snapshot of the two walking casually back towards the trolley. I truly believe these two would dress to the nines and visit the Philadelphia Museum of Art for a date night stroll.
This iconic Philadelphia location everyone in the bridal party loaded back on to the trolley and headed to The Atrium at the Curtis Center for a few more photo opportunities. Across the street from the gorgeous Cescaphe Event Group venue is the scenic and peaceful Washington Square. Andrew and Leigh Anne joined us for a few more photos in the park where they spent time walking and enjoying the gorgeous weather together. The two seemed completely at peace – almost like the calm before the party of a storm of a reception that was coming later in the evening. We checked our watches and sent the duo off to their private cocktail hour.
Cocktail hour was one for the books! With food stations, passed hore dourves, and drinks flowing from the bar Leigh Anne and Andrew relaxed while spending time with friends and family. While everyone mingled and talked they were entertained by the skillful illusions of Magician Kevin Bethea who wowed and amazed all while making everyone laugh. With cocktail hour winding down everyone entered the ballroom to the music of The Slippery Band and delighted by the decor provided by Beautiful Blooms. The LOVE ice sculpture was placed strategically behind the four tier wedding cake.
As soon as Leigh Anne and Andrew entered the hall the party started and never stopped. It started with the kickass entrances and a petal canon when the newlyweds kissed on the dance floor. The groom slickly did an outfit change (black coat to white coat) and they enjoyed some quiet time at the reception while their friends and family gave touching and heartfelt blessing and toasts. The groom danced with his mother and the bride danced with her mothers and uncles. That’s when the party really kicked into high gear.
The Saint. Joseph’s Hawk came running into the reception with his iconic flapping wings to pump up the crowd. Yes, he flapped his entire dance floor and Photo Booth experience (if you were wondering!). Yes the ENTIRE time – it’s great luck! A little cake cutting, a little dessert bar, and a lot of dancing. The reception party raged into the evening as the band kicked their performances into high gear with a special “guest appearance” by the bride and groom on stage.
We did manage to sneak the newlyweds away for a final private photo session to show off the atmosphere of the historic building. I thew a couple of the photos into the slide show at the end. But instead I show you a happy pair of alpacas wearing David Arlen Jewelers rings as crowns.
We would liked to thank Leigh Anne and Andrew for having us as part of their day! We absolutely adored being a part of your wedding celebration and we feel like members of the family!
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