Adrian and Nate met through mutual friends at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo when she was on the women’s lacrosse team and he was on the men’s team. They dated for five years before getting engaged at the summit of Mount Tallac on the South Shore of Tahoe during a morning hike on the 4th of July weekend.
A little over a year later, they were married outside the Zephyr Lodge at Northstar California, in a fall wedding. “I always knew I wanted to get married in Tahoe,” says Adrian, who spent her childhood summers at her parent’s cabin at Fallen Leaf Lake.
Their photographer, Ciprian Photography, captured all of the magical moments, while their Wedding Planner, Stephanie Marie & Co. made sure their special day flowed smoothly. “Establishing a rapport with my clients is paramount to having successful working relationships,” says Ciprian. “Adrian and Nate were just that, easy to get to know, talk to and communicate with. Wonderful couple.”
Most of the 115 guests were from the Bay Area, as well as out-of-town guests, including some from England, Switzerland, Austria, New York, Maine, Colorado, Washington and Oregon. Since many guests were traveling a long distance, Adrian and Nate valued having a venue that could host both the ceremony and reception. “The reason we picked this location was honestly the gondola/ski lift ride on the way up,” says Adrian. “We thought, ‘what a cool way to get to a wedding?!’”
The couple had a First Look photo session in Northstar Village. Adrian remembers feeling overwhelmed and excited when she first saw her groom. “I would not label myself as a ‘crier’ but immediately burst into tears when I saw Nate,” she says. “After all the wedding build up for 14 months, I was so comforted to see him that I burst into tears.” Nate recalls that he grew “increasingly happy as I saw how happy Adrian was.”
Then the wedding party took the gondola and chairlift up to the fields surrounding the Zephyr Lodge. Adrian loved her wedding flowers from Love & Lupines, especially the bouquets and the ceremony “altar piece” from Manzanita Glow. She wanted the décor to be natural as possible, so she chose earth tones including greens, maroons, oranges, dark yellows, wood and bronze. Their coordinating invitations were on brown recycled paper with a rose gold tree ring print.
The ceremony was very personal, with all of the content created by the bride, the groom or their officiant Graham, who is Adrian’s brother-in-law. “We wrote our own vows, had a couple of readings by family members and walked down the aisle to acoustic guitar,” says Adrian, who wore a V-neck, floor length dress, with a key hole on the back in a large laser print lace. “It was very special.”
The couple loved their reception at Zephyr Lodge. Guests dined on Mexican food followed by individual pies, instead of cake. Then it was time for dancing. Nate remarked, “All of our friends and family let loose and you got to see everyone’s personality as we all danced together.”
Adrian recalls her favorite wedding day memory: “Right after our ceremony, after we had just walked back into Zephyr, and we were by ourselves for like three seconds and both of us realizing we were married!”
Nate was surprised by how quickly the wedding day went. “Luckily, the pictures were a great way to remember each moment afterwards,” he says.
The newlyweds advise other couples to plan some alone time during the big day to reflect on everything that is going on. “There is only one day of your wedding, so take a minute to soak it in and recharge for the next event and interactions,” says Nate.
Ceremony & Reception Site: Northstar California | Photographer: Ciprian Photography | Wedding Planner: Stephanie Marie & Co. | Ceremony Décor Rentals: Manzanita Glow | Hair & Makeup: Art of Beauty | Flowers: Love & Lupines | Desserts: Flour Girl Wedding Cakes | Music: Brian Hess Music