After photographing Megan and Hugh’s engagement session last year at Hartley Mason Reserve and Fisherman’s Walk to York Harbor Beach, I was very excited to return to such a beautiful location to photograph their wedding on August 10th, 2019. Megan got ready at Harbor Cliffs Inn (part of York Harbor Inn) while Hugh got ready nearby at his family’s residence. The couple had a lovely first look in Hugh’s grandmother’s garden, which was also a great location for their pre-ceremony wedding party and family portraits. Megan and Hugh’s wedding ceremony took place across the street at Hartley Mason Reserve, which is a public park overlooking York Harbor Beach with splendid ocean views. Their wedding reception took place at the York Harbor Reading Room, which is a gorgeous private event space next to the park. There was even a surprise firework show, put on by Megan’s uncle. It truly was a night to remember!
Here’s Megan and Hugh’s story they shared with their guests:
"The first time Hugh met Megan, he knew he'd met someone special. The second time, he knew that he'd met someone special, and Megan knew that Hugh was sort of faceblind. It was June 2011 at the Green River Preserve summer camp, and Hugh had introduced himself to Megan twice within ten minutes.
Once Hugh and Megan were able to get a firm grip on what each other's faces looked like, they quickly fell in love, spending the summer in the kind of subterfuge necessary for camp romances. They coordinated their days off, planned their campout hikes to 'accidentally' cross paths, and pretended to know how to tie fly-fishing flies so they could teach an activity together. When the summer was over, they still couldn't tie flies, but they did keep dating through their time at UVA and UNC. In 2014, Hugh and Megan moved to Virginia Beach, where they got their beloved cats, Domo and Luna. Most recently, in July 2018, the whole family moved to Alexandria, Virginia.
Another storybook moment in Hugh and Megan's relationship was their engagement. Even Hugh remembers the exact moment they decided to get married - at a sushi restaurant in Virginia Beach right after the miso soup. Then almost immediately Hugh got a phone call informing him that his flight to Salt Lake City the following morning had been cancelled. If he wanted to go on his ski vacation at all, his travel companion Dillon told him, they would have to drive to Charlotte, NC in time for a 5am flight. "Well," Hugh said to Megan when he got off the phone, "I can't describe how excited I am to spend the rest of my life with you. But tonight I have to drive to Charlotte."
Two months later, they picked up the rings and drove immediately to First Landing State Park to get officially engaged. It was not a surprise; Megan doesn't like surprises. They had sandwiches, pimento cheese, champagne, and two rings, and they asked each other to marry....each other. They both said yes.
The moral of this fairy tale is that love at second sight might not get all the press, but it works just the same.”
I asked Megan to tell me more about her wedding style and overall vision:
How did you envision your wedding day? Tell us about your color palate, style and/or vision.
When we were in Maine last August I loved all the blue hydrangeas blooming, so that inspired the color scheme. I wanted the style to be classic and comfortable - something that would lend itself to guests feeling at home wandering the many interesting nooks of the reading room as well as compliment the ocean backdrop of the ceremony and reception.
Tell us about your flowers, your gown, your favors, your cake, etc.
The flowers were various white flowers with dusty blue hydrangeas and some greenery. They were arranged by Brenda's Bloomers who did an amazing job! I loved the bouquets and what she did with the fireplace at the reading room. My dress was Sottero and Midgley from Elegance by Roya in Alexandria, VA where we live. It was organza fabric with beaded straps, belt, and buttons down the back. I'd also like to shout out Megan VanDevanter and her team who did hair and make up for the women in the wedding. I think they did a great job! We didn't really do favors, although my mom put out flip flops for anyone whose feet got tired dancing in their dress shoes that were very popular. The cake was from Beach Pea Bakery in Kittery. There were tiers of lemon cake with Chambord whipped cream and raspberries with vanilla butter cream and tiers of chocolate cake with chocolate mousse, Chambord whipped cream, and vanilla butter cream.
Ceremony Location: Hartley Mason Reserve
Reception Location: York Harbor Reading Room
Second Photographer: Kate Harris
Officiant: Julie Draper
Band: Occasional Brass and Strings
DJ: Clark Sillery of Fred Pappalardo DJ's
Florist: Brenda's Bloomers
Cake: Beach Pea Baking Co.
Hair and Makeup: MEV. Hair and Makeup by Megan Vandevanter
Dress: Elegance by Roya Bridal
Rentals: Exeter Events & Tents