|Dave & Lisa with Aunt Lynn and Lisa's mother, Gloria.|
|Chris & me.|
After the ceremony, we gathered outside to make the trek over to the reception space. Below, you can see Michelle & Marena hanging out by the bridal party's trolley. The trolley was such a cute idea to bus the bridesmaids and groomsmen around. And the trolley also turned up at the end of the night to take a large group of us back to our hotel. Kudos to Kara for thinking ahead and not allowing anyone to drink and drive. So thoughtful!
|Mike & Erin.|
One of the most amusing touches I mentioned was of course, these crazy cardboard cutouts of Paul & Kara that greeted guests at the door. They were larger than life and even made a couple appearances out on the dance floor as things got wild later on. haha
When we walked into the lobby, champagne with assorted fruits were readily available. Yum!
And wouldn't you know it, there were more mini-sized cutouts of both Paul and Kara getting a little silly.
After grabbing a glass of champagne, we headed out to the back deck for the cocktail 2-hour. Yep, that's right, two hours for cocktails before heading up to the reception space. Kara sent us all an email before the big day to remind us that this was "a marathon, not a race." haha Nevertheless, the July heat got the best of some of us and we were more than ready to head inside when the time came.
So happily, we headed into the reception room that was totally decked out in pink lights with black and white details and gorgeous centerpieces.
The head table had a giant-sized chair for Paul and Kara to share. Paul's daughter, Cameron looked so adorable sitting by herself in that giant chair while Paul and Kara danced and mingled with guests.
The cake table was opposite the head table and held this wild pink, black, and white cake.
Check out the topper. haha
The first dance is always so sweet.
The matron of honor had a really sweet speech. The highlight was when she said she had always been there for Kara and that she had talked to Kara's parents and they all agreed "We're DONE. We are DONE. It's your turn, Paul." lol
Paul's dad, Bill, was the best man and gave a funny speech as well. His note cards ended up on the floor well before the speech was over.
|Chris & me again. We actually used this picture for our engagement announcement in the Jackson Citizen Patriot in Michigan.|
|Chris & his dad.|
As a fun little surprise, later in the evening, the waiters pulled back a curtain to reveal a candy bar! While kids were not invited to the wedding, Kara did allow the babysitter to bring Joe and Nicole, (Paul's nephew and niece) to come and partake in the sugary goodness.
|Nicole and Joe loved getting to come to the reception for an hour or so and pig out on the candy bar|
The engagement pictures appeared again on the card box. Such a clever way to tie in this fun little element in different ways.
|Cute card box with pictures of Paul and Kara.|
And then, in addition to the candy bar, we were surprised with a sundae bar just outside the reception room. To be honest, with two hours of cocktails in me, along with wedding cake and candy, I tried hard not to look directly at the sundae bar ... well, for a while. In the background, you can see the backdrop for the photobooth area, which was a ton of fun.
Speaking of wedding cake. The groom's family's table also got little strawberries wearing chocolate tuxes.
And as I mentioned earlier, here are some guests dancing with the cardboard cutouts.
This guy caught the garter. Michelle, Paul's sister had the bouquet thrown at her. The guy danced around Michelle for so long we weren't sure he knew what to do with it. haha
In the end, Michelle put the garter on him.
And at the end of the night, the trolley took a bunch of us back to the hotel, where we all passed out from exhaustion ... actually the bride and groom and many others went out to a club after, but Chris and I were too tired and hopped right into bed, full of sugar and alcohol. lol