Modern Love

By Kathy Knotts, Bay Weekly Managing Editor

Love is in the air—late spring through early fall are peak times for saying “I do,” says  Unless you are one of those couples who opt for a wedding in the dead of winter, this is the time it all starts to come together.

This week we bring you a look at some Chesapeake weddings and how brides- and grooms-to-be checked off their to-do list with help from local businesses.

The wedding industry took a hard hit during the pandemic. Ceremonies were shrunk or scrapped altogether and a lot of businesses that work with engaged couples found themselves out of work. Thankfully, business is booming again. Micro-weddings may linger around but hosting a big party is back in style.

Writer Duffy Perkins noticed that even though weddings are back on the calendar, how couples approach their big day is shifting a little. The emphasis is back on the guest experience and making sure everyone is comfortable and feels included. I think it really comes down to making all the details just a bit more personalized. A great wedding blends a couple’s personality and invites their guests to share their joy on a momentous occasion.

My wedding took place 19 years ago this month. We opted for an outdoor ceremony at a venue just outside the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee. I wore a bright pink dress and we dined on crawfish and bourbon pecan cheesecake and danced to our custom-made playlists (on a stack of CDs). It was magical and memorable. And I was ahead of a trend, as “breaking traditions” seems to be en vogue right now. Gone are doing things the same way over and over—if ever there was a day to do things your way, your wedding should be it.

If I were to get married here in Chesapeake Country, I would be so impressed by the sheer number of options. Everywhere you turn, there’s a beautiful view of the Bay and lovely venues ready to cater to your every whim. I envy engaged couples planning their weddings in this area. You really do have an abundance of options, from historic churches to museums and parks. You can go subtle or over-the-top!

From the food to the invitations, the flowers to the dress, getting married is a great time to honor the Chesapeake Bay lifestyle and share with your guests all the things we love about living here.