The offbeat bride: Brittany Wager, Audio Engineer (and Offbeat Bride lab rat!)
My offbeat groom: Steve Wager, Web Consultant
Location & date of wedding: August 2002 at the Buffalo Gap Camp in Capon Bridge, West Virginia — the same place where we met at the All Good Music Festival in 2000.
What made our wedding offbeat: Since we met at a music festival, we wanted to recreate that atmosphere. Once we booked the location everything else sort of fell in to place. We had the campground from Friday morning to Sunday afternoon, so we invited everyone to join us for the whole weekend — not just the day of the wedding. We had a bonfire and jam on Friday night, a cookout and open mic at the lake on Saturday afternoon, and one of our favorite bands played three sets after the wedding. Getting everyone together so far ahead of the actual ceremony was wonderful. They all knew each other very well before the "main event" and it helped to being together our different groups of friends and family into one community.
I put a lot of focus into the music and making sure that everyone would be comfortable and have a good time. I didn't spend too much time on things like linens, centerpieces, food, etc. In the end people don't tend to remember those things anyway.
Our biggest challenge: We didn't have any wedding "staff" except for the few people who worked at the campground — a cook and a groundskeeper. As we got closer to the date of the wedding we kept thinking about little things that would need to be done, like cutting the cake and bussing dishes after dinner. Before the wedding we gave everyone who was willing to help out a job to do. We had friends and family help us decorate and tear down, friends who poured the champagne for the toasts, and my sister in law even passed out glow sticks and put some on hula hoops when it got dark! In the end it worked out well, and made everyone feel involved.
My favorite moment: I left the reception for a moment, and when I was walking back I saw the dance pavilion all lit up. Everyone was dancing, the band was on fire, and it just seemed to be radiating so much energy and joy.
My offbeat advice: Figure out what is really important to you before sharing your plans with other people. Don't let traditional wedding vendors talk you into something you don't really want. If you aren't comfortable working with someone, find someone else! Remember that even though the wedding is supposed to be all about you and your spouse, you need to factor in consideration for people your wedding is really important to. We had to be flexible on some things out of respect for our more elderly family members. In the end I'm glad we did.
Enough talk — show me the wedding porn: Great pictures of Brittany's bands, flower "girl," and hula hooping guests over here.
Are you an offbeat bride? Tell me all about it, darling!