When COVID hit, Meghan and James was one of my first couples to pivot to a small, intimate elopement. They toggled between getting married up in the mountains, their backyard, or a park in Bend. The week of the wedding, they settled on a downtown Bend Drake Park elopement. James engineered and built a beautiful arch to get married under, they invited a few family members, gathered some sunflowers, and that’s truly all they needed!
Meghan and James
Meghan and James are seriously adventurous. They biked home from their ceremony! Their honeymoon was a mutli-week backpacking trip throughout Montana, which sounds SO my style! Their spontaneity and joy in the simple things in life are so admirable. It was a breath of fresh air to be part of a wedding so laid back and focused on what truly matters: the families and the vows.
The intimate elopement ceremony at Drake park
Each family member in attendance stood in a circle to read a speech during the ceremony, playing a special part in blessing Meghan and James’ new union. Meghan’s brother-in-law officiated the ceremony. Her sisters decorated the ceremony site with sunflowers that Meghan had grown. A few of their friends even “crashed” the wedding, surprising them with a champagne toast for them in the park from afar!
Now for the photos!
Now for the best part! Please enjoy my favorite photos of the sweet ceremony Meghan, James, and their family put together. You can tell they are just so happy to enjoy life together. I especially love sweet exchange of looks right before they headed off on their bike together. Cheers to you, Meghan and James!
It’s rare in Bend to have leafy trees to photograph in (I’m so incredibly used to junipers and pines that I don’t even notice) but there was some magic in that diffused light. We also lucked out that Drake Park was largely quiet considering they got married on a warm August Friday evening!
Their day was full of personal details. From a punny flask to riding off (and all the way home) on a tandem bicycle. Meghan and James are proof that a backyard elopement doesn’t mean that you’re eating off of paper plates. They rented glassware and a long table from Curated Event Rentals and their elaborate garden were perfect decorations and even some exploration from Meghan’s nephews.
These two have an absolutely incredible garden at their Bend home! When I first did a walk-through a couple of weeks before the wedding they sent me home with a bag full of lettuce, peppers, and zucchini. Meghan grew the flowers for her bouquet and for the decorations on the ceremony arch and table.
They had their first dance in the flower beds and were surprised with a cake from James’s mom. Meghan and James are both super adventurous and their honeymoon was a 3 week backpacking trip around Montana!
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