Rehearsal Dinner Location: The Reef : 
Ceremony Location: Serenata Beach Club
Reception Location: Serenata Beach Club
Caterer: Serenata Beach Club
Wedding Coordinator: Christina Kopecki
Photographer: Tonya Beaver Photography
Videographer: None
Cake: Classic Cakes
Florist: Lori Parker Floral Studios
Officiate: Allison Cook   
Hair: Angela Bryd
Make-up: Christina Burns
Entertainment: Majik Touch DJ Services
Transportation: None
Wedding Dress: Love a Bridal Boutique
Wedding Shoes: Dillards
Bridesmaids Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids
Groom and Groomsmen Wear: Men’s Wearhouse

Sarah and Andy are probably the youngest couple I photographed all season, and I have to say, it was a true joy. Watching them interact from the first time we met to their wedding day, I’m inspired by their love. To have met each other at such a young age, fall in love, COMMIT to a lifetime together. How beautiful and how lucky they are.

It was my first time photographing a wedding at Serenata Beach Club, and it was amazing! There are so many really beautiful places for photos. Sometimes a challenge with venues is lighting since we’re shooting in mostly full sun prior to a ceremony. Serenata has a really great greenery area in their front circular drive which provided a lot of shade but still beautiful for their prewedding formal photos. They really wanted to have their ceremony on the beach which can be tough in these summer months! BUT, they had a storm brewing in the distance which brought the temp (and super bright light) down just in time for their wedding. It was seriously so perfect. We did some quick photos and headed in for their reception. Their DJ kept the party going all night. It was such a blast.

It’s always great working with Christina Kopecki, and she was a rockstar coordinating all day. Lori Parker made some GORGEOUS flower arrangements. Classic cakes of course has the best cakes in town (PS have I mentioned that Andy is their son). Allison delivered such a beautiful ceremony for them to take their vows. And as you can tell, Angela and Christina did an AWESOME job with hair and makeup. Serenata staff was really great. Seriously this day had a dream team. It was just a day that was easy and smooth.

Sarah and Andy really only had one request for photo ops, and that was to take some night time photos out by their waterfall. There was supposed to be a “moonlight movies” showing that night during their reception so it wasn’t going to work out to have the space to do it. BUT because of the distant storm (and lightening) earlier, the movie had been called off. Meaning, we were able to walk out to the waterfall and have the space to take the shots that they really wanted. Seriously when I say everything truly happened to just ‘work out’ for them to have a perfect day, it just did.

Thank you two for letting me be with you for your wedding. It was FUN. Your wedding party was super fun to get to spend time with. Your vendors were such a team. And your love for each other, oh so special. I can’t tell you how many times I cried. Beautiful tears of joy getting to experience your love. THANK YOU!

(oh and must must must mention Jess, my second shooter, too. Thank you for all the many times you have my back on a wedding day. Definitely couldn’t do it without you. Love ya!)

Love Story:

How did you two meet? 

Andy and I met in middle school, we were in 8th grade science class together and Andy sat behind me because of our last names. We talked a few times in class but we really got to know each other the summer before high school. After getting to know each other all summer our first week of high school we found out we had a class together, so we sat next to each other. After our first week of high school, Andy asked me to be his girlfriend and we have been together ever since. We dated all throughout high school, we actually won class sweethearts for our senior superlative. We both knew that we wanted to be together forever, so after we graduated from high school we knew we wanted to go to the same university. We ended up both going to Florida State University. We dated all throughout college and after we graduated from Florida State we came back home to Ponte Vedra.

How did he propose?

Andy and I both love Disney, we have taken countless Disney trips over our 8 and a half years together. It’s always been something that has brought both of us so much joy and many fun memories together so Andy decided Disney would be the best place to ask me to marry him. It seemed like a normal Disney trip with Andy and his family where we would go down for 3 days and go to the parks. On the last day we were there we were supposed to have breakfast at the Grand Floridian hotel, we had gotten there a little early so Andy said we should walk around the hotel and see everything there. Andy seemed like he knew where we were going but I just wanted to go back and eat breakfast because it was cold outside where we were walking. He ended up leading us to the Grand Floridian Wedding Pavilion and there was a beautiful arch at the end of the outside lawn where you could see Cinderella’s castle from the other side of the lake. Andy said we should go under the arch and take a picture with the castle behind us and that’s when Andy dropped to one knee and told me how much he loved me and he wanted to spend the rest of our lives together. I was so excited I didn’t even say the word yes I just jumped with excitement and held out my hand. It was the most perfect proposal for me.

Wedding planning:

How did you decide on your color scheme, flowers, and cake? 

We both knew we wanted the colors to be very beachy so we decided with a light blue and light pink.

Andy and I both wanted tropical flowers at the wedding but I also wanted to incorporate blue hydrangea. Blue hydrangea means the world to me because it reminds me of my grandmother, she always had blue hydrangea in her house. My grandmother adored Andy and always knew we would end up together and she always told me don’t mess things up with Andy because he’s one of the best guys she’s ever known. My grandmother passed away a year and a half before Andy proposed and the blue hydrangea were the perfect way for us to have her there with us on our wedding day. 

The cake was an easy choice, Andy’s parents make wedding cakes and when we first started dating I started to help deliver wedding cakes on the weekends with them. I helped deliver one cake to Serenata Beach Club and it was the most beautiful cake I had ever seen it was so beachy and perfect and I took a picture of that cake and I have saved it in my phone so one day I could use a similar design for my own wedding cake. Andy also got a coastal grooms cake and on the grooms cake we had many things make out of fondant that we both love including a fondant replica of our dog, Arlo.

How did you decide on your invitations, and who did you use?

      We used Pineapple Post in Ponte Vedra for our wedding invitations, we looked at many traditional invitation styles but we both knew that wasn’t us. We looked at other more colorful and unique options until we found the perfect one. It was a painted scene of the dunes with seagrass and we both loved it. We were told by many people that it wasn’t very formal but we didn’t feel like we were formal or fancy people and we wanted to go with a more casual but beautiful invitation.

What was the most fun part of wedding planning?

      The most fun part of wedding planning was picking things out together that we both loved. Andy and I got to see how truly similar our style is and we sat on our porch and picked out our personalized decorations for our wedding day.

Which part did you not like as much?

      Everyone had their own opinion on everything and tried to input their opinion even when it was not always needed. Andy and I knew what we wanted and people would still give their opinion.

What are the biggest pieces of advice you wish you would have known before the wedding day.

      The biggest piece of advice that I received is to step back and look at the room with your  husband and just take it in because it all goes by so fast.

In your words, can you give a storyline of your wedding day?

      It was the perfect day. We spent the morning surrounded by our closest friends trying to prepare for what the day had in store for us. The bridal party had the day start out how it always should, with Chick-fil-A breakfast, while the groomsman started out their day at Metro Diner for breakfast. Andy and I agreed that we were excited and nervous all day but when we started getting ready to leave for Serenata Beach Club it really hit us that today is the day we have waited so long for. The bridal party and I arrived first, we had pictures taken and then when the groom and his groomsmen arrived we had to make sure Andy and I did not see one another before it was time to say, “I do”. We waited what felt like an eternity for the ceremony to officially begin. I got to see everyone walk down to the beach where all of our closest family and friends were waiting for us. I finally knew it was my time to walk when I heard the music change and felt the butterflies in my stomach. I kept repeating the word “slow” in my head when I was walking, to remind myself not to run to Andy with all of my excitement. Then I got to the moment I had waited for, seeing Andy for the first time at the end of the aisle waiting for me, knowing we had finally made it. I saw tears in his eyes when we first saw eachother and I couldn’t stop smiling. I was the most excited I had ever been in my life. After the ceremony, we both felt like the evening flew by so quickly. We both took in every small moment that we could. We sat at our sweetheart table for dinner that faced the entire room and looked out at everyone who made our special day even more amazing. Seeing all the people that love and support us in one room made us feel so blessed. Everything was truly perfect that night. I can’t say there would be a single thing I would have changed that day, it was everything we ever wanted.

      What was the high point of your wedding day that you hope to remember forever?

Getting to see Andy at the end of the aisle when I finally made it down to the beach and I could finally see his face. In that moment I had all of our wonderful memories from the past 9 years flash into my head and I realized that we finally made it to the day we had always talked about.

Jacksonville Wedding Photography

Tonya Beaver Photography is a photo studio located in Jacksonville Beach, Florida providing: newborn, children, family, engagement, and wedding photography.

(904) 382-6354

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