A Golden Utah Wedding at the Grand America Hotel

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Ashley and Terrance met in the US Air Force Army and were just friends “for a very long time,” before they started dating, Ashley said. Six weeks into their relationship they were both living in Japan while in the Air Force and decided to legally get married so Ashley could stay in country longer. A little over a year later Terry officially proposed. Said Ashley: “I usually would go out to the flight line to meet him at the jet when he landed. On this particular landing however, Terry jumped out of the jet and got down on one knee to propose. I was completely shocked!”

Fast forward three years and the couple celebrated with a ceremony and reception with family and friends at the Grand America Hotel in Utah. With gorgeous photography from Pepper Nix, their friendship and love was on full view during a grand evening years in the making. Their beautiful photos are below, along with more details from bride Ashley. Congrats to the happy couple! We’re so glad we could share your photos.

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On Their First Look:

“The first look was the BEST thing we ever did, because when he got to see me, I got to see him. Instead of being down the aisle from each other, we were face to face, which was very special because he was able to tell me that I was beautiful, and I could hear it. It was a very special and intimate moment between the two of us, and I am SO glad we did it.”

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On the Decision to Hire a Wedding Planner:

“One of my life philosophies is that I wouldn’t want someone to tell me how to do my job, so I really wanted to rely on the experts when it came to things I didn’t know much about. I had the good fortune of working with Michelle Cousins, from Michelle Leo Events, and I told her my priorities were the location, an open bar, and a good photographer, because after it is all over, the photos will be all we have! After that, I let her run the show with linens, flowers, lighting, etc. – because SHE is the expert in the field!”

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On the Wedding Ceremony:

“Well, the whole ceremony was my favorite. Because we were already legally married, we had full liberty to do whatever we wanted. My brother “officiated”, which is a loose term because there was nothing official about it. Our mothers gave their speeches, which were beautiful, unique, and so much more meaningful to us than a standard reading or poem that someone else wrote. My brother did an amazing, amazing job, and I still am stunned by all of the nice things he had to say to Terry and I. He blew us away. I also loved our vows, which we wrote together. They meant so much more to us than pre-written vows using someone else’s words.

One of our guests came up to me and said that was the best ceremony he has ever seen. He said it was the most real, and genuine thing. I knew we did the right thing after he said that.”

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On Life After Loss:

“Earlier in the week, a dear friend of ours Moose Fontenot died while flying the F-15 across Virginia. That was tough, and it didn’t always feel right to have a good time only two days after his death. That being said, the man loved to party – and we knew he would be VERY upset if we didn’t have an awesome time. After it was all over, we went outside and had a small tribute to Moose with all of our wedding guests. It was very special, because about half of our guests knew Moose quite well. We miss him very much, and hope we did right by him and his family.”

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On DIY:

“There were a few DIY projects!! I taught myself how to do calligraphy, so I addressed/wrote all of the invitations, and seating cards at the reception. Our favors were my family’s maple syrup, which I had no part in but they were certainly a DIY project!! All of the frames at the wedding were up cycled by me and I repainted them with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint. A lot of our bridal party gifts were DIY and Etsy too. I made the name hangers for the bridesmaids by hand.”

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First Dance Song:

“Take Me To Church,” by Hozier

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On Her Advice to Other Brides:

“Just relax and rely on the experts. It was the best thing I ever did. There was no stress, no worries, and I was really able to be a part of the big day and enjoy it!”

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Photographer:  Pepper Nix Photography//Equipment Rentals: Diamond Rental//Equipment Rentals: Diamond Rental//Event Venue: GA Hotel//Cinema and Video:Jared Wortley Films//Musicians: Joe Muscolino Band//Makeup Artist: Kristen Packard Makeup Artist//Event Designer: Michelle Leo Events//Band: The Groove Merchants//Floral Designer:Urban Chateau Floral//Band: Utah Live Bands//Band: Utah Live Bands LLC//Invitation Designer:Wedding Paper Divas


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