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OurVow to You YOUR SPECIAL DAY AY MEANS AS AS MUCH TO US AS IT DOES TO YOU.

RESIDENCE INN AMELIA ISLAND STEPS AWAY FROM THE BEACH

Bridal Showers, Beautiful Receptions, “Tides Terrace” Weddings, Intimate Rehearsal Dinners, and Romantic Honeymoon Packages An All Suite Hotel, Full Gourmet Kitchen in Every Suite, Resort Style, Pool/Hot Tub, Fire Pit. Conveniently located Near a Variety of Historic Attractions, Beach Activities, Golf, Fishing, and Shopping.

Residence Inn Amelia Island

904-277-2440 or 866-245-6099 2301 Sadler Road Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 www.ResidenceInnAmeliaIsland.com

Downtown Hampton p Inn & Suites

Special Rates ~ Spectacular Location

Enjoy all the amenities, all the activities, and all the excitement available to you on Amelia Island.

ENJOY ALL THAT AMELIA ISLAND OFFERS!

Amelia Rental

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(904) (904 (9 04 491-4911

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& MANAGEMENT SERVICES 5299 South Fletcher Avenue (904) 261-9129 • (855) 382-6835 • www.AmeliaRentals.com


Now offering services to help make your event or wedding easier to enjoy.

Expansive Vase Selection Vintage Decor Selection Wedding Vendor Referrals Lighting Enhancement Packages Chiavarri Chair Rental

Furniture Rental Chandelier Rental Linen and Chair Cover Rental Plant and Foliage Rental Ceremony Arch and Canopy Rentals

Wedding Day Coordinator on Staff

Make your appointment now to see how amazing we can make your day! 1430 Park Avenue

Amelia Island

904-261-5546

www.artistic-orist.com

AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 1


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LETTER FROM THE

OVER

THE PAST DECADE, IT’S NOT AN

EXAGGERATION TO SAY THAT AMELIA ISLAND

has become one of the top destinations wedding spots in the South, and perhaps the entire country. When we began publishing Amelia Island Weddings a few years ago, we called it one of the hottest spots in the Southeast for destination weddings, but our enthusiasm may have pushed us slightly ahead of the curve. Today, however, there is no doubt that Amelia Island attracts a great number of destination weddings by couples who want to share an incomparable wedding weekend with their families and friends. In the intervening years, what has given us as much satisfaction as Amelia Island’s growing popularity as a destination wedding hotspot has been having the opportunity to feature Amelia Island families who have celebrated their child’s wedding here at home. We are very pleased to be able to do that. It’s always fun to learn how an Amelia Island family celebrates a wedding here because they already know so many of the terrific places on the island to gather for the fun-filled events that make up a wedding weekend, whether it’s fishing and golf, nails and lunch, kayaking, barbeques, rehearsal dinners, afterparties, or next-day brunches. In this issue, we are happy to present six local families in our featured

2 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

Editor

wedding stories. Our readers always tell us they enjoy reading Amelia Island Weddings Magazine because they love the romantic stories of today’s brides and grooms, who apply their own originality to the spectacular palette of Amelia Island to create one-of-a-kind wedding events. These fine young couples definitely know their way around Amelia, and they use that knowledge to create some really memorable wedding weekends! In these pages, we have the opportunity to share in the joy of our friends and neighbors celebrating one of life’s most important rites of passage. What is it about weddings that make them so endlessly intriguing? Seeing people at this magical moment in their lives is a deeply moving experience, a hopeful moment that is both heartwarming and life-affirming. As in the stories from this issue, the heart of the occasion always shines through in every wedding, whether large or small, lavish or simple. We hope you will enjoy reading this issue of Amelia Island Weddings as much as we enjoyed putting it together. Visitors and residents alike know about Amelia’s unique allure: the long stretches of unspoiled beach, scenic pockets of marsh, and moss-draped oaks. Whether you’re a resident, a frequent visitor, or a newcomer to Amelia, we hope our magazine will inspire you to imagine the extraordinary wedding possibilities available to you on this beautiful 13-mile-long barrier island.

STAFF Philip Kelly Deana Basile Kelly Publishers Deana Basile Kelly Editor Tom Barrett Art Director Karen Miller Julie Simmons Dickie Anderson Theresa Duncan Nan Kavanaugh Kate Yandoh Harris Contributing Writers

CONTACT US Sweetpea Media, Inc. P.O. Box 16624 Fernandina Beach, FL 32035 904-277-8012 info@ameliaislander.com www.ameliaweddingsmag.com

Amelia Island Weddings Magazine is published twice a year in January and July. All editorial contents including maps and photographs are copyrighted 2014 Sweetpea Media, Inc. Reproduction of any material contained herein in any manner, in whole or in part, is prohibited without the express written consent of the publisher. Unsolicited manuscripts, photographs or other artwork cannot be returned unless accompanied by a self-addressed stamped envelope. No responsibility is assumed for unsolicited materials. The cover and the magazine’s contents are fully protected and may not be reproduced without the written permission of the publisher. Amelia Island Weddings Magazine is distributed free of charge on and around Amelia Island. Back issues may be purchased from the publisher for $2 per copy plus postage if sent through the mail.


Features SPRING 2014

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THE WEDDING OF YOUR 8 FOR DREAMS, MAKE IT AMELIA Amelia Island is the ideal backdrop to many beautiful, romantic memories.

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STORY 14 COVER When Lauren Stephens of Amelia Island and Grayson Mathewson became engaged, Lauren and her family never had a doubt that the wedding celebration would be on Amelia Island.

WEDDING STORIES 18 ISLAND Five recently married couples share their unique wedding stories.

SPOTLIGHT: 28 VENUE JOE’S 2ND STREET BISTRO Located in the Historic District, Joe’s 2nd Street Bistro has an elegant main dining room, enchanting courtyard, and upstairs dining room with a balcony, making it a great choice for any wedding event.

THE PERFECT GOWN 36 FINDING An overview of some of the latest trends in wedding gowns to help you find the perfect dress.

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Inside CHECKLIST 6 WEDDING A helpful list of things to do and when to do them.

30 JEWELRY Today’s couples often purchase their rings

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SPRING 2014

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TRENDS 32 WEDDING Professional Wedding

Consultant Lisa Presnell of Coastal Engagements identifies some fun new trends for this wedding season.

SCRAPBOOK 34 WEDDING A peek into the wedding albums of some

ISLAND PHOTOGRAPHY

and wedding day jewelry together and interesting new choices are available, say Jeff and Brett Whitaker of Robison Jewelry.

recent brides and grooms

40 FLOWERS Brooke Raulerson, AIFD, of Artistic Florist and Amber Marvin, FSMD, of Island Flower & Garden share their insights into the latest trends in wedding flowers.

42 CATERING A checklist to help you find your caterer 44 HONEYMOONS Romantic accommodations, fun activities, and superior dining

YOUR DAY 46 REMEMBERING A guest book is a great place to start, but many couples are discovering creative ways to remember their wedding day.

48 DIRECTORY Names, addresses, phone numbers, and websites of people who can make your wedding a complete success.

ABOUT THE COVER Newlyweds Lauren and Grayson Mathewson after their wedding at Amelia Island Plantation. Photo by Robert Max Photography.

4 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS


THE

U LT I M AT E

BRIDAL

AC C E S S O RY

AT Beautiful Smile! his is your special day and you want it to be perfect! Capture the joyful moments of your Wedding Day with a bright, white smile! Our doctors use the latest dental technology to create the most beautiful, healthy smiles possible. Let us help you, your groom, bridal party, and family members smile more than you ever imagined on the Day of your Dreams!

Call us today to schedule your Smile Consultation! COSMETIC TOOTH WHITENING s TAKE-HOME WHITENING TRAYS s SMILE MAKEOVERS PORCELAIN VENEERS sBONDING FOR CHIPPED & STAINED TEETH s IMPLANTS sCROWNS

 1947 Citrona Drive, Fernandina Beach, FL 32034

www.ameliadental.com

s C. K. Owens, DDS s George R. Van Etta, DMD sLaurie A. Kitson, DMD s Joshua O. Bietenholz, DMD

Exclusive Venue, Expert Planners

Fernandina’s Fantastic

v Fudge u

Give your guests a taste of Amelia Island. Fantastic Fudge has been handmaking chocolates and confections for over 25 years. Our unique wedding favors and hotel gift bags are as delicious as they are memorable. 218 Centre Street ~ Fernandina Beach on Amelia Island

904-277-4801 ~ www.fantasticfudge.com

The setting is a page from history with a gracious clubhouse established in 1928, as a playground for the affluent. Tucked away on pristine waterfront parkland, among majestic southern oaks, the Ribault Club is an historically restored and intimately secluded venue that is as timeless as it is contemporary. The Ribault Club’s dedicated staff creates, designs and manages weddings, large and small, that guests will long remember. XXX5IF3JCBVMU$MVCDPNt Fort George Island Cultural State Park, Jacksonville, FL

AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 5


Amelia Weddings 12+ MONTHS PRIOR Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q

Propose! Research rings and stones to choose engagement ring. Set an initial budget Determine what type of ceremony you want (church/religious group/ justice of peace) Determine the type of reception you want (day/evening, indoor/outdoor, formal/casual) Select a target wedding date and back-up dates Select location of wedding (hometown/destination/resort) Research availability of reception venues, according to the location and wedding type you’ve chosen Determine size of reception and draw up preliminary guest list Decide if you want a bridal party and, if so, how large Reserve venue as soon as possible, especially if you’re planning a large wedding If planning a destination wedding, collect lodging information for guests Interview and choose caterer Start to research bridal gowns/bridesmaids’ dresses/tuxedos or groom’s clothing Interview and choose wedding planners/photographers/ videographers/musicians Visit bridal shows

SIX TO NINE MONTHS PRIOR Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q

Refine guest list with families Purchase the bride’s gown and groom’s attire Confirm guests lodging for destination wedding Purchase the bridesmaids’ dresses Shop for dress accessories (veil, jewelry, other accessories) Go over music program for both ceremony and reception Research destinations for honeymoon Interview and reserve florist Order the wedding cake, if not provided by caterer Start planning rehearsal dinner and reserve a restaurant Arrange for wedding party transportation to the wedding (limousines, horse & carriage, vans)

FOUR TO SIX MONTHS PRIOR Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q

Check requirements for blood test and marriage license in your state Shop for wedding rings Select and order invitations and stationery Make sure that men’s attire has been ordered Complete the guest lists Send your engagement announcement to the newspaper Inform mothers to select their dresses Finalize honeymoon details and make the necessary reservations

TWO TO FOUR MONTHS PRIOR Q Confirm the menu and catering details with caterer Q Prepare all maps and directions for the ceremony and reception Q For a destination wedding, collect info on local activities and restaurants for guests Q Select your wedding rings Q Buy a wedding guest book Q Set the dates and times for rehearsal with the person officiating marriage Q Plan the bridesmaids’ luncheon or any other parties Q Plan the design and printing if you choose to have a program for the ceremony Q Finalize details with florist, musicians, photographer, videographer, etc.

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WEDDING PLANNING CALENDAR

Q Arrange the necessary accommodations for out-of-town guests Q Confirm rehearsal dinner time and place Q Confirm the wedding cake details with baker

SIX TO EIGHT WEEKS PRIOR Q Q Q Q Q Q Q

Mail invitations and announcements Prepare a portrait if planning a newspaper announcement Set appointment with photographer for formal bridal portrait Select gifts for your attendants Ask family or wedding party members to prepare speeches or toasts Set appointments with any hairdressers and/or makeup specialists Hire the limousine or other form of transportation

FOUR TO SIX WEEKS PRIOR Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q

Update the expected number of guests with caterer Buy a gift for your intended Schedule a final fitting for gown Purchase a going away outfit Pick up your wedding rings Purchase or borrow all wedding accessories, such as ring pillow, goblets, candles, etc. Confirm florist details and delivery times Plan the seating for the reception as well as other details for the ceremony Write placement cards or table assignments Make sure that all bridesmaids’ attire has been fitted Meet with d.j. or musicians to confirm reception music: first dance, parent dances, wedding party

TWO WEEKS BEFORE Q Q Q Q Q

Make arrangements for wedding gifts to be safeguarded and transported Handle business and legal details such as name changes, address changes, etc. Reconfirm your guests’ accommodations Check all clothing and accessories for you and bridal party Get marriage license and any blood tests

ONE WEEK BEFORE Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q

Review any seating details with ushers Make sure all wedding attire fits Finalize the seating arrangements with caterer Reconfirm honeymoon reservations and start packing Call any guests who have not responded, and give final head count to caterer Finish all the place cards for reception Confirm dates with musicians and vocalists Delegate wedding day responsibilities to reliable individuals Wrap and present the wedding party gifts

O N E D AY B E F O R E Q Get a manicure or massage to relax Q Stay with family or friends the night before and get to sleep early Q Review and rehearse all the details with your participants

T H E B I G D AY Q Q Q Q Q

Rest and Relax with a good bath Allow yourself plenty of time to get dressed Be sure to eat properly Leave plenty of time for hairdresser and makeup appointments Enjoy your wonderful day and cherish every moment!


k Come step back in time at the Florida House Inn with all the people you love most!

Painstakingly restored 1857 inn with heart pine floors and original fireplaces 17 updated guest rooms

Weddings for 200 guests as well as intimate rehearsal dinners and small receptions

Largest outdoor venue in Downtown Fernandina Beach

Delicious Southern cooking, fresh cocktails, and welcoming, attentive staff

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Old Southern charm with 350-year old live oak, mermaid fountain, and enchanting courtyard with string lights

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On-site event coordinator will help you create the perfect garden wedding,cocktail reception, or small dinner party

FOOD • LODGING • SPIRITS

22 SOUTH 3RD STREET • FERNANDINA BEACH, FL

904-491-3322 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS innkeeper@FloridaHouseInn.com • FloridaHouseInn.com

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ISLAND PHOTOGRAPHY

Amelia Island

F O R U N F O R G E T TA B L E W E D D I N G V E N U E S , A M E L I A H A S I T A L L By Karen Miller THE FIRST DAY OF THE REST OF YOUR LIFE BEGINS ON AMELIA ISLAND. Picture yourself, bouquet in hand, walking barefoot on warm sand in a romantic and beautiful island locale. A destination wedding on Amelia Island allows you to exchange vows in a breathtaking paradise. This friendly barrier island is located directly on the Intracoastal Waterway and offers views of pastoral marshes, moss-draped live oak trees, and the sun-drenched beaches of the Atlantic Ocean. A destination wedding is a unique vacation, not just a oneday event. And not just for the wedding couple, but for all their families and friends. A destination wedding allows your guests to relax and visit with you leisurely, in the perfect setting over three or four days. 8 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

Amelia Island has all the amenities of a beachfront resort, paired with the intimate feel of a small town that is rich in history and loaded with Southern hospitality. There are dozens of delightful and picturesque places to hold your ceremony and reception, from cozy bed and breakfast inns to historic churches, world-class hotels, and beachfront venues. From an informal gathering of a dozen guests to a stately affair of 200, Amelia Island offers an assortment of wedding venues that are perfect for your needs. With lots of activities available in and around the island, a weekend wedding event is more than just a marriage ceremony—it’s a vacation getaway that will be remembered long after your guests have hung up their sandals!


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gather and watch a movie during a reception. Lorna Meehan and her professional staff will help you with every detail for a truly memorable event. Oyster Bay Yacht Club, a private yacht club and marina, is an exquisite destination for weddings, receptions, rehearsal dinners, and corporate retreats. Nestled among canopied oak trees with expansive water views, the stunning clubhouse boasts 7,500 square feet of combined venue space. Whether it’s a casual coastal wedding marsh-side on the Oyster Deck or formal exchange of vows at sunset overlooking the marina, Oyster Bay Yacht Club can effortlessly accommodate your every need. The wedding party and guests can even arrive by water taxi from historic Fernandina Beach. From extravagant galas to intimate get-togethers, Terrie Sanders and the courteous staff will help you create an unforgettable event at this enchanting location. If you’re looking for an elegant on-island venue that overlooks beautiful, manicured lawns, look no further than Fernandina Beach Golf Club. Set among 27 holes of true Florida golf, Fernandina Beach Golf Club provides a beautiful setting for weddings, receptions, parties, and more, and can also be the perfect place for a wedding weekend golf outing. The course offers a fun and enjoyable day of golf at rates that won’t bust your budget. The spacious clubhouse, with its professional kitchen facilities, can accommodate everything from large receptions to PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY

TRADITIONAL ELEGANCE Legendary for their exceptional service, the ladies and gentlemen at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island are devoted to creating a truly memorable experience for every bride who walks through the door. Their talented team employs a full-service approach to planning that addresses every detail, while allowing the couple to feel as though they are guests at their own wedding. For the event itself, the property can accommodate everything from an intimate seaside ceremony for two to a grand gala for hundreds on the sweeping oceanfront lawn. Inside, a variety of sumptuous spaces showcase the classic sophistication of the island’s only five-diamond resort. In November 2009, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island completed construction on a modern new ballroom. The romantic exterior colonnade and the exquisite interior décor combine to create a perfect setting for the bride seeking a venue touched by Southern elegance. For an elegant wedding celebration that will sweep you back in time to the luxury of a by-gone era, try The Ribault Club. Located on beautiful Fort George Island just south of Amelia, The Ribault Club began as a luxurious winter retreat for wealthy industrialists in the late 1920’s. A fantastic circular drive leading up to the elegant Georgian facade of the clubhouse makes for a fabulous entrance and exit for the bride and groom. Surrounded by ancient live oaks dripping with moss and towering palm trees, the exquisitely restored historic building, made of wood and white painted brick with French windows and green shutters, is the perfect setting for a stunning wedding. Designed in a horse-shoe shape with a ballroom on one end and a dining room on the other, the club offers a variety of different spaces, including a covered verandah overlooking the lush shaded lawn and the Fort George River. A series of smaller salons can provide a perfect place to store gifts, or a place for kids to

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OYSTER BAY YACHT CLUB PHOTO BY PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY

RIBAULT CLUB PHOTO BY PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY

COURTESY OF THE RITZ-CARLTON, AMELIAISLAND

small, intimate wedding celebrations. Food & Beverage Manager Melanie Robertson and her staff are on hand to help you with every detail. Her relationship with local wedding vendors will help you in planning and saving on your event. Please contact Melanie for more information about pricing and availability. OCEAN ATMOSPHERE If you are looking for an affordable venue with a luxurious atmosphere, look no further than the new Residence Inn by Marriott ~ Amelia Island, where innovation meets relaxation. Located in the heart of Amelia Island and just steps from the beach, this spectacular resort-style hotel features spacious suites with gourmet kitchens, an outdoor recreation area with a putting green, an over-sized pool and hot tub, a state-of-the-art fitness room, and beautiful gathering spaces. Nestled near the pool area, the contemporary Tides Terrace makes the perfect venue for a poolside wedding. The Residence Inn can accommodate weddings from five to 85 people and offers exceptional rates for wedding groups. Indoor function space is also available for corporate functions, bridal teas, rehearsal dinners, and other events. Guests enjoy an array of complimentary services such as transportation to the beach, delicious breakfast every morning, grocery delivery, and wireless Internet access. Director of Sales and Marketing Dottie Richards can help you plan your wedding or event and help you with accommodations for all of your guests. Right across from the beach is Amelia Hotel at the Beach, a beautiful Mediterranean-style hotel with plenty of room for your wedding guests at a great value. This charming, centrally located hotel features spacious rooms, many with oceans views. Their 10 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

Terrace Suite is the perfect place to spend your honeymoon night with its king bed, Jacuzzi tub, and private oceanview balcony. Ask about their meeting rooms if you plan a small, intimate ceremony or reception up to sixty guests. The hotel wedding coordinator will assist you in creating a memorable event tailored to fit your expectations, the comfort of your guests, and your budget. According to the hotel’s wedding coordinator, the Amelia Hotel at the Beach “loves” weddings. “We help plan the event and focus on the details so the bride and groom can enjoy their day whether it be indoors or on the beach.” Right on the beach at the foot of Sadler Road, Sliders Seaside Grill offers a festive atmosphere for couples who are looking for an authentic island experience. With their Oceanfront Tiki Bar and deck, Caribbean-style dining, a raw bar and sushi bar, and even a children’s playground, Sliders has something for everyone in your group. With the addition of a brand new second floor oceanfront bar and deck, Sliders now offer space for over 200 guests with unsurpassed views of the beach and the sandy dunes just steps away. Sliders oceanfront location lets you marry on the beach, if you wish, and walk through the dunes right into Sliders back courtyard. Sliders will prepare the perfect menu to suit any taste for a memorable reception, rehearsal dinner, or bridal luncheon or tea. Located on the ocean next to Seaside Park, Sliders is also close Now open for special events, the Ocean Club of Amelia offers the perfect setting for your wedding festivities. New owners George and Michelle Stewart have created a magical setting sure to indulge your every desire. The coast cottage atmosphere overlooks the whimsical dunes and renowned shorelines that form beautiful Amelia Island. The Ocean Club offers both interior and ocean front exterior seating, accommodating up to 80 guests. Whether you prefer an island casual bridal luncheon or an over the top reception, this venue is ideal for any occasion! For more information, please contact Events Manager Nigel Teare. The Days Inn & Suites is one block from the beach, and its accommodating staff is ready to handle all your wedding arrangements. The hotel can handle weddings from the very formal to the more casual, and the centrally located inn itself can serve as a hub for various fun activities. The Days Inn & Suites has three spacious banquet rooms, the Jasmine, Azalea and Magnolia, from which to choose. Each guest room has a microwave and a refrigerator, and some rooms offer kitchenettes. A pool is available to relax in or do morning laps, and a lounge offers entertainment in the evening. Because the inn is so close to the ocean, it is an


AND THAT’S NOT ALL Of course, there are lots of options to choose from when you’re considering an island wedding. On Amelia, there are many lovely bed & breakfast inns that can provide an elegant and intimate setting for your special day. The circa 1856 Amelia Island Williams House on South Ninth Street in downtown Fernandina Beach is owned and operated by Byron and Deborah McCutchen.

Beautifully landscaped gardens and a spacious courtyard are the perfect venue for a wedding celebration whether intimate or grand. Smaller weddings and receptions can also be held in the elegant dining room and Victorian parlor. Byron and Deborah’s attention to detail has created a special place for an island wedding and they are ready to help you with all the arrangements. The beautifully restored Victorian is also on a quiet street downtown within easy range of all the restaurants, shops, and sightseeing that the downtown has to offer. Also in the heart of historic downtown Fernandina Beach is The Florida House Inn on South Third Street, the oldest continually operating hotel in Florida. The Florida House Inn has undergone a painstaking historic restoration and features beautiful heart pine floors, a 350-year old live oak tree, an immaculate courtyard and gardens, original fireplaces, string lighting throughout the courtyard, a beautiful mermaid fountain, and 17 luxurious guest rooms. The courtyard can accommodate weddings of up to 200 people, and the inside dining room is perfect for rehearsal dinners and dinner events, all featuring the Inn’s delicious Southern cuisine. The Mermaid Bar offers live entertainment and it is a great spot to enjoy after the ceremony or reception. Emily Saltmarsh is ready to help you with all of your wedding planning needs. For an intimate, romantic gathering in downtown Fernandina Beach, step into the Hoyt House, an elegant 1905 Queen Anne style ten-bedroom en suite mansion. The manicured grounds, softly

WILLIAMS HOUSE BED & BREAKFAST INN PHOTO PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY

ideal place to stay before and after a beach wedding, and a great place to hold a reception. Located just one block from the beach on Sadler Road is the award-winning Hampton Inn, Amelia Island at Fernandina Beach. Their wedding specialist offers several wedding packages from which to choose. Their spacious and comfortable rooms feature all white bedding, new 32” high definition—flat paneled televisions, a microwave, refrigerator, coffeemaker, and high-speed wireless Internet access. The hotel features a complimentary hot breakfast each morning and a sizeable outdoor pool. Don’t miss the fresh baked cookies each evening! The hotel also loans their guests beach chairs, umbrellas, boogie boards, and beach towels at no cost. And the central location means you can walk to the beach, a variety of restaurants or shops, and you’re just a short ride from historic downtown Fernandina Beach. For brides, the Hampton Inn also provides a free personalized wedding website and the chance to earn free rooms. This location can accommodate large groups comfortably, all with the 100% Hampton money-back guarantee. On the Atlantic Ocean at Main Beach is the new Seaside Amelia Inn. The inn’s 47 comfortable guest rooms or onebedroom suites are elegantly appointed and include flat screen televisions, microwaves, mini-refrigerators, and Internet access, with oceanfront, pool, or sunset views. A complimentary breakfast is also included. The Seaside Amelia Inn boasts a rooftop terrace with panoramic views of the ocean for receptions or events, as well as reception rooms for smaller groups or events. Enjoy a wedding ceremony on the beach and entertain your guests on the rooftop terrace, the outdoor courtyard, or the pool deck. For honeymoon or guests’ lodging, the Amelia Surf & Racquet Club offers one-, two-, or three-bedroom condominium suites with private balconies overlooking the beach. With magnificent views of the Atlantic, direct access to a private beach, and two pools overlooking the sandy beachfront, a stay at the Amelia Surf & Racquet Club gives its guests an oceanfront vacation experience. Each suite is professionally decorated and offers amenities such as cable television, a full-sized kitchen, and washer and dryer. Free tennis on clay surface courts is included, and local golf courses, restaurants, and plenty of activities are all within minutes of the resort.

COURTESY OF RESIDENCE INN AMELIA ISLAND

HOYT HOUSE PHOTO BY PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY

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PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY

illuminated by lights hanging from the 500-year-old moss-laden oak tree, create a breathtaking evening ambience. Their grounds, gazebo, and poolside make a wonderful location for a rehearsal dinner, ceremony, or cocktail reception. Walk indoors through 11foot double French doors, where three gracious sitting rooms await, along with a baby grand piano playing your favorite compositions. Weekend guests enjoy luxurious shower gels and soaps, lush robes and wraps, a three-course gourmet breakfast, and lounging in the terry-covered chaise lounge chairs by the pool and spa. Innkeeper Deborah Gold says: “Come home to The Hoyt House. We will exceed your expectations!” Paradise awaits your wedding guests at the Blue Heron Inn on Amelia Island. Experience the warmth and elegant comfort of a nineteenth-century home transformed into a beautiful Florida bed-and-breakfast. Exquisite small weddings are an intimate and elegant celebration at the Blue Heron Inn. You may hold your ceremony in the inn’s elegant foyer, on the beautiful wrap-around porch, or in the private wedding garden with a pool and patio. The inn offers full-service planning of your event to ensure it’s a perfect celebration of your life together. Located in the heart of the National Historic District of Fernandina Beach, the Blue Heron Inn Bed and Breakfast is only steps away from Amelia Island’s beautiful picturesque Victorian island village, close to restaurants, shopping, music, and art galleries. If you are looking for more room for your wedding party, the Hampton Inn & Suites Historic Harborfront Hotel might just be the answer. Director of Sales Bill Pennington says, “‘Location! Location! Location!’ is an old advertising term, but it really does apply as to why so many brides pick our unique destination.” Located on the Intracoastal Waterway overlooking the Fernandina Beach Marina, the Hampton Inn & Suites offers spacious and comfortable accommodations. Take advantage of staying in the heart of the historic district—a short walking distance to many of the island’s renowned restaurants and shops. The Hampton Inn & Suites can accommodate weddings and receptions from five to 85, and offers specialty suites for all types of brides. Room types include traditional rooms, two-room suites, and deluxe whirlpool rooms. For those seeking a truly special place to rest, a stunning 12 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

bridal suite and a high-class presidential suite are also available. Pennington can provide you with all the information you need and help you with all of your wedding accommodations. Joe’s 2nd Street Bistro, located in the heart of the historic downtown, can also graciously accommodate wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners, and private parties. Joe’s has ample seating room upstairs and down, with a second-story porch that overlooks the Fernandina Beach harbor, as well as a lush, New Orleans-style courtyard. Their helpful staff will help you design the perfect menu of carefully prepared and delicious food for your wedding celebration, and Joe’s has an excellent wine cellar to compliment whatever menu you choose. Of course, being by the beach also means enjoying the casual beach atmosphere like at The Crab Trap in historic downtown Fernandina Beach. Located on South 2nd Street, this restaurant is a great place for a rehearsal dinner or small reception. The Crab Trap has been a local favorite for 26 years. Owned and operated by the Germano family, The Crab Trap’s nautical décor, friendly service, and great food make it the perfect place for a special Fernandina Beach celebration. The Crab Trap serves fresh local seafood, as well as steaks, lobster, chicken, and oysters. With banquet facilities, a private dining room overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway, two full bars, and two fireplaces, The Crab Trap can accommodate your every need. Nestled under the live oaks in Palmetto Walk, Bar Zin is a chic neighborhood bistro that’s all about having fun with family and friends, while enjoying great American bistro food and wine. What better place for a very special gathering of friends and family? With an outdoor brick-paved courtyard under the canopy cover of the live oaks, as well as a wraparound porch and elegant dining room and bar, the indoor and outdoor spaces are ready to welcome small intimate parties, or larger gatherings of up to 49 people. (The courtyard can hold another 49.) Whether it’s a rehearsal dinner, a bridal luncheon, a small reception, or just a gathering of friends, owner Tim Seyda’s passion for excellent wine and food and his attention to detail promise to make every event one to remember. Located in Fernandina’s historic district, Le Clos serves delicious Provençal dishes by candlelight in a charming, intimate 1906 cottage. For a romantic and enchanting atmosphere, Le Clos hosts rehearsal dinners or other bridal events, as well as small receptions. But it’s not only about the atmosphere: classically inspired Provencal cuisine is finely crafted and presented by Chef/ owner Katherine Ewing, who received full degrees in both cuisine and pastry from Le Cordon Bleu and L’Ecole de Gastronomie Francaise Ritz-Escoffier, Paris, and trained at The Ritz Hotel, Paris, France. Le Clos also offer an exceptional wine selection, and their menu emphasizes the freshest ingredients, including local fresh seafood. With its superb setting and cuisine, Le Clos is the ideal place for exceptional events. WHATEVER YOUR HEART DESIRES Whether shaded by a canopy of ancient oaks, overlooking scenic marshes, or on a pristine beach, Amelia Island provides the perfect natural backdrop to an unforgettable wedding celebration. With its Southern charm, vivid history, great natural beauty, and abundant activities, it’s a great place for a one-ofa-kind wedding. And the many gracious establishments here on the island are ready to help you create a wedding—on any scale—that is perfect for you.


The Perfect Location For Your Beach Front Destination Wedding & Reception

Imagine the waves breaking in the background as a romantic setting for your new beginning! Stroll up to our elegant oceanfront dining room and porch overlooking the beautiful beaches of Amelia Island! Call today to see why Sliders Seaside Grill is the perfect place to celebrate your special day!

1998 S. Fletcher Ave. Fernandina Beach

904.277.6652 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS Slidersseaside.com • info@slidersseaside.com

13


Lauren & Grayson WALKER’S LANDING By Julie Simmons

Photography by Robert Max Photography

“WE ARE SO FORTUNATE TO LIVE IN SUCH AN AMAZING PLACE, BUT,

Island wedding. For their daughter, Lauren, and her husband,

if we lived anywhere else, I would still come to Amelia Island

Grayson Mathewson, the Stephenses had a ball creating a wedding

for a wedding weekend,” says Jennie Stephens, owner of Red

celebration that was filled with joy for the couple and a ton of fun

Otter Outfitters and mother of a recent Amelia Island bride.

for their guests.

“The beautiful venues, an abundance of fabulous restaurants and

The couple met at Georgia Southern University in 2009, and

caterers, lots of great accommodations—combined with a beach

they have been inseparable since. In late 2012, the two hiked the

trip for your guests—make it a natural choice!” Jennie’s affection

waterfalls of Unicoi State Park in Helen, Georgia, but the diamond

for Amelia illustrates all the reasons so many love an Amelia

engagement ring on her left hand was the most beautiful thing

14 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS


Lauren beheld that November day. The couple, with Jennie, who was elated when Lauren delegated much of the planning to her, chose Walker’s Landing at Amelia Island Plantation for their wedding and reception. “I loved the blank palate this venue provides; it is a simple and beautiful structure, with an amazing salt marsh view from all angles,” explains Jennie. The excitement was already simmering when Lauren and Grayson arrived from Macon, Georgia for the festivities. Friends were booked at Amelia Hotel at the Beach, the groomsmen at Sandcastles Villas at Amelia Island Plantation, and the bride and bridesmaids settled into a friend’s beachfront home on So.

Fletcher Avenue. The ladies adored their hours in the autumn sun and a visit to New York Nails, while the gentlemen caught a mound of redfish aboard Captain Benny Hendrix’s charter boat, “The Heavy Hitter.” On Thursday evening, everyone gathered at the Salty Pelican for dinner, followed by dancing at the Palace Saloon. On Friday, the wedding party assembled at Bar Zin Bistro & Wine Bar for the rehearsal dinner. “It was fabulous,” smiles Lauren. “We were greeted with champagne, and dinner included filet mignon and local snapper.” The bride was quick to note that planning the dinner was almost as much fun as the event itself, AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 15


as owner Tim Seyda treated her to a full wine and menu tasting. Following the rehearsal dinner, the crowd joined a large group of guests at a night-before party that friends of the family hosted for the couple. As the wedding day arrived, the bride felt at peace as she watched the sun rise over the Atlantic shoreline. The ladies enjoyed a bridesmaids’ luncheon, where they sipped mimosas overlooking the marsh and laughed a lot. Next, they were pampered at Serenity Hair Colour & Design. “We had the salon to ourselves, and they were so accommodating. They got us right in and out on time,” remembers the bride. Stacy and Vann Simmons live 16 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

near Walker’s Landing, and they invited the couple to dress and be photographed at their home. Robert Max documented the day in photos, including the “first look” moments when Grayson saw his bride, and when Lauren boarded a 1969 Mercedes convertible, which delivered her to the aisle. The groomsmen arrived at Walker’s Landing by boat, and the Peck Community Ensemble serenaded the guests with “Going to the Chapel” as everyone entered and “At Last” as Lauren arrived. Father Stephen Mazingo of St. Peter’s Episcopal Church officiated the ceremony. “We wanted our wedding to be no-fuss, relaxed, and about our relationship, love, and personalities,” explains the couple.


When choosing the caterer, Elizabeth McCranie of Terra Amelia Island was hired the minute they heard her say “Mexican food.” Complete with margaritas and a taco bar, the party commenced following the ceremony, and the Decades Band kept the crowd dancing. Wedding planner William Ratliff created the décor for the reception. “We worked together on the vision, but he executed the magic—mixing antique silver pieces, glass, driftwood, and old books with white hydrangeas, snapdragons, roses and baby’s breath—to create unique tablescapes that looked indigenous to the setting,” says Jennie. “For the ceremony, we used an antique buffet with silver candelabras cascading with flowers as the altar

piece.” In keeping with the relaxed and entertaining spirit, Bliss Cupcakery presented an assortment of cupcakes, and the groom and groomsmen enjoyed Blizzards from Dairy Queen. “After a year filled with details and planning, it was gratifying to have both families and lots of dear friends together for a weekend filled with love and fun. One of my favorite things about the whole event was realizing how we are truly blessed,” concludes the mother of the bride. And Lauren and Grayson were particularly blessed on this special wedding day, surrounded with the beauty of Amelia Island and blanketed with love from family and friends. AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 17


Vanessa & Juan T H E R I T Z - C A R LT O N , A M E L I A I S L A N D By Karen Miller

Photography by La Dolce Vita Photography

WHEN VANESSA GARCIA MET JUAN HURTADO AT HER FAMILY’S restaurant in Dalton, Georgia, it was hardly love at first sight. He was a customer, and Vanessa was still in high school, working hard at Garcia’s, a busy Mexican restaurant. She was so busy, in fact, that she had no time for boyfriends. And when Juan asked her for her phone number, she refused to give it to him. After months of pursuing her, Juan finally got Vanessa’s number, but then she still wouldn’t return his calls or texts. “He used to text me several times a day, but I still didn’t want to date him,” laughs Vanessa. “I was very young, having fun, and didn’t want to get involved.” But Juan knew that he and Vanessa were meant to be together, and eventually she gave in and started dating him. “My parents and sister advised me not to rush into marriage. I was still very young,” says Vanessa. “I 18 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

needed to become more mature before I could make a decision about marriage.” The couple had a long dating relationship before Juan popped the question, in a remarkably romantic and well thought-out manner. It was Valentine’s Day, and the couple had dinner in a restaurant in Chattanooga, Tennessee that evening. After their meal, Vanessa’s mother called and asked her if she could stop by Garcia’s to check on something for her. When she and Juan walked into the restaurant’s banquet room, there was a lovely scene awaiting them, filled with candles, tablecloths, flowers, and even a Mariachi band playing the couple’s favorite songs. Juan gave Vanessa a letter, where he declared his love for her, but, at the end of the letter, it was blank. Vanessa questioned him—where was the rest of the letter? Juan held up an ultra


violet light to the page, and there was his proposal, written in invisible ink: “Will you marry me?” Of course, she said yes, and Vanessa and Juan were ready to plan their wedding together. The couple got married at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in downtown Fernandina Beach, with a full traditional Mexican ceremony. “In Mexico, we don’t have separate bridesmaids and groomsmen,” explains Vanessa.

“We have couples and family members as part of our wedding, people who we will be close to for the rest of our lives.” Indeed, their wedding party was quite large, consisting of six couples, four nieces, plus Juan’s sister, for a total of seventeen people. Vanessa’s wedding was unique in that she wore two dresses on her special day—one very white dress for the ceremony, and another ivory-colored dress for the reception. The wedding reception was held at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island and hosted nearly 200 guests. Because Vanessa and Juan love music and love to dance, they had two bands—one for dinner, and one for the afterparty. Another Mexican tradition is to celebrate a wedding late into the evening and even into the morning hours, and Vanessa’s celebration was no exception. “Our party ended at 4:30 a.m.! We had such a wonderful time—we danced all night. We were tired, yes, but it was our wedding day!” “Cassandra Chernesky from Flair Weddings did such a great job,” says Vanessa. “I became friends with all of our vendors— you develop a close relationship with each and every one when you plan a wedding.” And where did the couple go on their honeymoon? Cancun, of course! “Juan has always wanted to go there, and, in the Mexican tradition, the husband always chooses the honeymoon location.” Today, Vanessa manages Peppers Mexican Grill and Cantina in Fernandina Beach, her family’s very successful restaurant. And Juan is no longer just a customer. He’s part of the Garcia family now, as Vanessa’s loving husband, and her very best friend. AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 19


Amy & Denny EGAN’S CREEK By Julie Simmons

Photography by Jennifer Becker Photography

AMELIA ISLAND BOASTS A ROSTER OF AMAZING WEDDING SITES, BUT sometimes the backyard of an Amelia Island home can offer something equally spectacular. When Amy and Denny LiPira started to plan their wedding, they decided that they didn’t want a big wedding. That’s when the bride’s mother, Charlene Kingsnorth Heller, who owns Fern Lily Boutique with daughters Amy and Erin, offered to host the nuptials in her backyard on Egan’s Creek just west of Fort Clinch. “This was the perfect spot for Amy and me,” says the groom. “It completely fits our personalities.” Last year, an audience of 25 family members gathered in the Heller’s Oak Marsh lawn. “We were so excited when Amy and Denny decided to have their wedding at our home,” said Charlene. Charlene and Amy work and play together, so it seemed quite right to extend the kindred spirit to the wedding day. The mother20 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

daughter trio opened their eclectic Fern Lily boutique three years ago in Palmetto Walk. The girls are crazy about vintage style and they incorporate it into the décor and offerings at Fern Lily. Denny chose just the perfect vintage engagement ring for his bride, and the couple settled on a rustic antiquated wedding theme. “We had a daytime ceremony and brunch overlooking the extraordinary views the creek’s high tide offers,” explains the bride. “The fashion was bohemian with greens, yellows, and ivories. The whimsical look of my gown was complemented with a halo of yellow flowers, and Denny’s mom hand-embroidered the wedding date on my gown as my ‘something blue.’” And, as modern-vintage as it gets, the groom wore gray converse sneakers and the bride pink. Island Flower & Garden arranged all the floral pieces.


Guests enjoyed drinks and musical entertainment by Larry App of Resort Talent, in anticipation of the couple saying, “I do,” in front of the altar made of antique wooden doors. “We had a great time shopping antique sales, finding just the right items to repurpose,” explains Charlene. Attendees dined at a family-style table provided by Beachview Event Rentals & Design and decorated with floral wooden crates. Everyone loved drinking from mason jars and the vintage napkins the groom’s mother hand-embroidered with the couple’s monogram. In keeping with the vintage theme, the couple was photographed in a green 1952 Chevrolet Truck. Gourmet Gourmet, one of Amy’s favorite Amelia Island restaurants, catered the brunch, which included light fare such as chicken, shrimp, and caprese salads. “Perhaps my favorite vintage detail was toasting with Denny’s great grandparent’s wedding glasses,” adds Amy. Bliss Cupcakery served wedding cake and snickerdoodle-flavored cupcakes.

Guests naturally enjoyed exploring Amelia Island, the rehearsal dinner at Espana Restaurant, and their stays at Comfort Suites Oceanview at Main Beach, while Amy and Denny adored their time at Elizabeth Point Lodge. One of the couple’s favorite moments of the weekend was their post-wedding walk on the beach in front of the lodge. That evening, many friends gathered at Brett’s Waterway Café to dine and celebrate. “It was fun watching the sunset while the guys puffed cigars my dad brought,” Amy remembers. “Our wedding turned out to be everything I could ever want,” says Amy of her intimate Amelia Island wedding. “Using Mom’s home as our venue kept us on a reasonable budget and maximized the beauty of the natural backdrop Amelia Island offers.” Today, Amy and Denny stay busy with their careers, their Chocolate Lab, Mia, and making time for some more peaceful walks on the beach. If you’re on the south end of Amelia, swing by Fern Lily at Palmetto Walk and say ‘hi’! AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 21


Ainsley & Shahed T H E R I T Z - C A R LT O N , A M E L I A I S L A N D By Julie Simmons

Photography by Pam Bell Photography

WHEN AINSLEY KENNARD DECIDED TO START A DOG WALKING business, little did she know she would meet the love of her life. It happened in Fort Lauderdale, when she was attending graduate school. Shahed Hamedani was attending flight school at the time, and needed someone to walk his dog when he couldn’t be home to do it himself. Coincidently, Ainsley and Shahed lived in the same apartment complex, and everything just fell together when they met. In fact, it appeared there was never any question that the two were meant to be together. “We moved in together early on and had a long engagement before getting married,” says Ainsley. Ainsley and Shahed were a sensible couple, discussing wedding plans together, even talking to each other about what kind of engagement ring Ainsley would like. But little did she know that Shahed, with his traditional values, had already asked her parents 22 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

for permission to marry their daughter. After a morning on the beach, the couple went into town for ice cream, and Shahed got down on one knee on Las Olas Boulevard in downtown Fort Lauderdale and proposed to Ainsley. “It was quite a surprise, and very romantic,” remembers Ainsley. The couple decided to get married on Amelia Island because they wanted a destination wedding that would be a treat for all their guests, and it was conveniently halfway between Fort Lauderdale and Atlanta, where Shahed’s family lives. Although Ainsley did not grow up on Amelia Island, the bride’s family roots run deep in Fernandina Beach. Ainsley is the daughter of Stephen Kennard of Amelia Island and Donna Kennard of Allendale, New Jersey, and the bride’s family goes back five generations on the island. Her great-great


grandfather was Capt. William Bell, who, along with his identical twin brother, James, was an original harbor pilot in the port. They also built many of the homes in the Historic District, including the Beech Street Grill building and the Pippi Longstocking house. But, more than anything, Ainsley appreciates the beauty of the island. “I love the scenery and the beaches of Amelia Island,” says Ainsley. “I didn’t want a big wedding, but a lovely wedding that would make my guests feel special.” Ainsley and Shahed chose The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island for its stunning, beachfront lawn and superb food and service. Her mother, Donna, helped Ainsley with the wedding plans. “We got together on Amelia Island and I helped her choose the flowers, photographer, the food, and everything for the wedding,” says Donna. They booked the Plaza Ballroom for their 80 guests, under the guidance of Wedding Planner Christina Saldana. Ainsley prefers traditional colors, and admits that she is a romantic. “I love pink, gold, ivory, and lots of flowers,” said Ainsley. “I used to work as a florist. I wanted gorgeous flowers, lots of them, plus candles, for a soft and romantic atmosphere.” Ainsley used all the services The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island offers, from their spa and salon to their wedding cake. “The food was wonderful, and the cake was one-of-a-kind,” says Ainsley. “Everything was so special; it was a luxury experience.” Because Shahed’s family is Persian, the couple wanted to incorporate Persian traditions into the ceremony. One of those traditions is the “Sugar Ceremony,” or “Aghd” in Farsi, where the bride and groom sit down with happily married female relatives, who place sheer fabric over the couple and take turns grinding two large sugar cones, or kalleghand, showering them in sugar. This signifies sweetness in the marriage. “My two sisters and Shahed’s three older sisters ground the sugar cones above our heads, which was a special way to incorporate our siblings in the ceremony,” explains Ainsley. Ainsley and Shahed were not able to take a honeymoon, however, because after the wedding Ainsley was on her way to do her residency in Montpelier, Vermont, where she is practicing as a clinical psychologist. Upon completion of her training, she will receive her doctorate degree from Nova Southeastern University in May. Shahed owns a successful dealer alternative auto service business in Atlanta, and the two of them look forward to being together full-time in just a few more months. Some things are worth waiting for. AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 23


Nikki & Jon O Y S T E R B AY YA C H T C L U B By Julie Simmons

Photography by Reichman Photography

AMELIA ISLAND PRODUCES SOME GREAT WEDDINGS, BUT DID YOU know it also specializes in matchmaking? Meet Nicki Collins and Jon Korman, who met at The Ritz- Carlton, Amelia Island, where they were working summer jobs in the recreation department. “We came down during college summer breaks,” Nicki explains. “Each summer, we got closer, and before long, we were a couple.” At the end of 2012, Jon sealed the deal with a diamond at the Scott Road Beach Access. “We’ve walked on this beach together for a long time,” he proposed. “Will you walk it the rest of your life with me?” Nicki, a wedding planner for TOAST of the COAST, knew they’d marry here. “Amelia Island is the place where I have my favorite family memories growing up, the place I spent spring breaks with friends, the place I began my career, the place I met 24 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

my husband, and the place we got engaged. There was no question about getting married anywhere else!” she says. “When we saw Oyster Bay Yacht Club, we loved it, and Manager Terrie Sanders is amazing.” “I felt an immediate connection with Nicki and her family,” says Terrie. “Knowing Nikki was an event planner, I knew the expectations were high, so it was exciting to create an unforgettable event for her and Jon.” On Wednesday, guests arrived and received welcome boxes filled with Fernandina’s Fantastic Fudge, Pirates Booty, and personalized waters and koozies. As the wedding day drew nearer, the bridesmaids enjoyed luncheon at Brett’s Waterway Café, while the groomsmen had fun at O’Kane’s Irish Pub and Eatery. The rehearsal dinner was held at Café Karibo, and later the party


traveled from Green Turtle Tavern to the Dog Star Tavern to The Palace Saloon. The bride’s family stayed at Oyster Bay Villas, which put them right next door to all the action. On November 23, 2013, the bride and her extended family gathered for a Southern breakfast complete with grits, eggs, and biscuits. After brunch, the bridesmaids spent a relaxing afternoon dressing, sipping mimosas, and watching the bride’s sister prepare Nicki’s hair and makeup. Nicki was featured on TLC’s “Say Yes to the Dress,” and TLC was filming and interviewing throughout the day. Later, 150 guests arrived by water from Fernandina Beach’s City Marina via an Amelia River Cruises’ sunset cruise. “Guests are still talking about that experience,” says Nicki. At 5:30 p.m., Nicki emerged with a tremendous smile. Following the ceremony, the party began and guests sipped the celebration’s signature cocktail, “The Not Collins” a play on Nicki’s change of name. The

Blues Factor Band played all night. “There wasn’t a soul not on the dance floor,” Nicki beams. Weary dancers refueled at the latte’ station, complete with personalized coffee sleeves. Oyster Bay Yacht Club catered the dinner. “Our trademark is impeccable service and gourmet catered cuisine, and we enjoy helping to realize everything in the bride’s imagination,” smiles Terrie. Jon is wild about pie, and the crowd loved the groom’s pie-pops—almost as much as they loved Sawtooth Oak Trees the couple gave each guest honoring Jon’s passion as a landscape architect. As the event drew to conclusion, the couple departed by boat and spent their first night as husband and wife at The Addison on Amelia Island. Next morning, they joined guests for a farewell brunch the groom’s family hosted in their home. Today, the Kormans make their home on Amelia Island, where they continue to walk hand-in-hand at the Scott Road Beach Access. AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 25


Jackie & Paul OMNI RESORT & HOTEL By Karen Miller Photography by Brooke Images LOCAL DENTIST DR. MARK OLBINA WAS ALL SMILES WHEN HIS daughter, Jackie, told him she wanted to attend dental school. Imagine how even more pleased he was when Jackie told him she was getting married – to a dentist! Jackie met her love, Paul Miller, at Nova Southeastern University College of Dental Medicine in Fort Lauderdale, while they were studying for their degrees. They were engaged for a year and a half, and decided to tie the knot on Amelia Island, where Jackie grew up. Today the couple lives on the island, with Paul working at Greenburg Dental in Jacksonville, and Jackie at Amelia Gentle Dentistry, the practice her father founded nearly 30 years ago. “Paul and I became good friends while we were both in school,” says Jackie. “Our relationship grew from there.” She goes on to say that even though their relationship was serious, it was a complete surprise when Paul proposed to her in West Palm Beach, on the beach in front of the Breakers Hotel. “It was very romantic!” exclaims Jackie. Jackie and Paul decided to get married at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in downtown Fernandina Beach and have their reception at the Omni Resort at Amelia Island Plantation. Because it was a fall wedding, Jackie chose vibrant, autumn colors – purple, orange, red, with rhinestone accents. “We had a large wedding party,” says Jackie. “Six bridesmaids, six groomsmen, one ring bearer, and two flower girls.” The Olbina and Miller families held the rehearsal dinner at Walkers Landing, inviting over 90 guests. “Paul is Greek and he

26 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS


comes from a big family,” laughs Jackie. “We had a wonderful time at the dinner, with lots of Greek dancing. It was really fun, and a great way to visit with everyone before the wedding the next day.” Jackie’s mother, Karen, helped with all the arrangements, including hiring an elegant chauffeur with his vintage Rolls Royce to drive the couple from the wedding to the reception. Wedding Coordinator Lisa Presnell worked behind the scenes at the reception to make it all come together like clockwork. “We had a cocktail hour in the Sunrise Room, with entertainment by Brian McCarthy, a local musician,” says Jackie. “The reception and dinner were held in the Magnolia Ballroom with music by The Mystery Band from Jacksonville. Paul and I are huge Florida Gator fans, and the favors we gave out to our guests at the cocktail hour were Gators sunglasses that were a huge hit. We even had the band play the Gator chomp music at the reception, since a majority of the guests were Gators fans, too!” Artistic Florist provided the

flowers, and Brooke Images was the photographer. “We wanted to use as many local vendors as we could,” states Jackie. “Everyone involved with our wedding was so creative and professional. It was simply perfect!” Because of his Greek heritage, it was only natural that Paul wanted to spend his honeymoon in Greece, and Jackie agreed. His uncle planned the whole trip for them, which took the couple to Crete, Santorini, and Athens. “It was a trip of a lifetime,” says Jackie. “We hope to go back again.” Jackie’s father, Dr. Mark Olbina, was a Navy dentist who started his practice on Amelia Island in 1982. “My father was definitely proud when I told him I was going to dental school,” says Jackie. “Now we work together every day, and I’m happy to be part of the family business my father started.” Dr. Jackie Miller is enthusiastic and passionate about her career and her recent marriage to her own dentist husband, Paul, making for big smiles at home, and at work, and wherever their lives will take them. AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 27


COURTESY OF JOE’S 2ND STREET BISTRO

WILLIAM RASER

VENUE SPOTLIGHT

Joe’s 2nd Street Bistro By Karen Miller IF YOU’RE LOOKING FOR A WEDDING RECEPTION VENUE WITH STYLE and charm, Joe’s 2nd Street Bistro has both. Located in the Historic District in downtown Fernandina Beach, Joe’s is a restored 1900era home filled with flavor. Their island-inspired main dining room and upstairs private room have been recently renovated, and the restaurant boasts an enchanting courtyard and a covered porch upstairs, which provide couples with different options for their wedding events. They also enjoy a lovely view of the harbor at sunset from the upstairs porch. Chef/owner Ricky Pigg and his wife, Mary, have a strong sense of family traditions, and they embrace their customers as if they were part of their own family. When the couple first purchased Joe’s 2nd Street Bistro, they became fast friends with the Amelia Island community. Their close connection to Fernandina Beach, 28 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

and Joe’s particularly, began when Ricky’s father, Ray Pigg, a local artist, created the painting that would eventually become the cover of Joe’s menu. A member of the Island Art Association, Ray was a well-known figure on Amelia Island until his passing. Ricky met Mary in Nashville, and the couple moved to Fernandina to take over Joe’s, where Ricky’s father’s paintings still hang today. “We can provide custom menus for any event,” says Ricky. “Recently, we were asked to prepare a menu using a client’s grandmother’s recipe. We love to do that—to prepare something that is a family tradition.” Indeed, Ricky loves to cook what he calls ‘American cuisine with a twist!’ “We are a ‘from-scratch’ kitchen,” says Ricky. “From shrimp and grits to rack of lamb, CAB Angus beef, crab and leek stuffed trout, and cornflake encrusted swordfish, we do it all.”


“We don’t charge a rental fee or deposit,” says Ricky. “That’s a bonus when couples are planning their weddings.” Joe’s 2nd Street has received the Certificate of Excellence from Trip Advisor last year, and even more kudos from Local Eats. For Ricky and Mary, they want Joe’s 2nd Street Bistro to feel as comfortable as home. “A meal here is almost like eating in a chef’s home, a quaint and delectable experience,” says Ricky. Joe’s special banquet menus can be viewed on their web site, along with per person prices. The restaurant is pleased to host receptions, rehearsal dinners, bachelor and bachelorette parties, brunches, or any special event. Joe’s is open every day except Tuesday for lunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and dinner from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Ricky and Mary encourage interested couples to make an appointment for a consultation. For more information, visit www.joesbistro.com or call (904) 321-2558.

WILLIAM RASER COURTESY OF JOE’S 2ND STREET BISTRO

COURTESY OF JOE’S 2ND STREET BISTRO

Joe’s upstairs private dining room seats up to 50 guests, with private restrooms, for a full-service, sit-down affair. Their staff is professional and congenial, and their extensive wine and beer list is superb. “We are able to provide specialty wines, in addition to our regular list,” says Ricky. “If there is something special you want, Mary will find it for you!” Joe’s staff is also adept at pairing wines with the various menu items. One added bonus that Joe’s provides is that there is no additional charge for the upstairs room, with a 48-hour guaranteed number of attendees.

AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 29


jewelry FOR THE BRIDE & GROOM

By Karen Miller with Jeff Whitaker

EVERY BRIDE WANTS TO SHINE ON HER WEDDING day, but so does her groom. For today’s modern couples, purchasing engagement rings, wedding rings, and wedding day jewelry has become a team effort. Jeff and Brett Whitaker, owners of Robison Jewelry in downtown Fernandina Beach, notice that couples are picking out their rings together. Repurposing an heirloom diamond is also a trend that brings families together. “What we see a lot of these days is using a family diamond and putting it into a modern setting,” says Jeff. “Halo-style jewelry is very popular and a great way to combine old and new.” Halo is a style that has its roots in the heirloom ring you might find in your grandmother’s jewelry box. While bigger and bolder than a classic solitaire, this vintage style expands the appearance of the center by as much as a half carat or more. “The cushion cut diamond is also very popular right now,” says Jeff. “It is a square diamond with rounded corners, and it has a vintage look.” 30 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

White metals are still the in thing, with 18 karat white gold the shining star of today’s modern rings. But, for durability, many grooms are choosing alternative metals like titanium and cobalt. “These metals stand up to wear,” says Jeff. “Wedding rings should last a lifetime, and today’s couples don’t necessarily purchase matching rings anymore.” Clear, white diamonds are preferable, but the Whitaker brothers are noticing an interest in colored diamonds. “We have a beautiful 2 karat blue diamond on display right now, which we recently purchased in Antwerp,” says Jeff. “We’ve had a lot of people looking at it.” Indeed, couples may have an idea of what they want their rings to look like, and completely change their minds once they see other styles and colors featured at their local jewelry store. Brides usually give gifts of jewelry to their bridesmaids, and freshwater pearls are all the rage. “Freshwater pearls are very affordable. We sell a lot of pearl necklaces, bracelets, and earrings,” says Jeff. Robison’s also carries a Destination Amelia Island Bracelet, which features the island’s historic lighthouse, a lovely remembrance for an Amelia Island destination wedding. And if you’re looking for a different sort of wedding gift, Arthur Court serving pieces are beautiful and durable aluminum products that look like sterling silver. That means no more polishing, and an heirloom gift that will last for generations to come. “The inspiration for our jewelry designs comes from our customers,” states Jeff. Based on what they have seen from brides and grooms through the years, Jeff knows that with today’s couples, he will always get requests for high quality diamonds, but also for emeralds, rubies, sapphires, tanzanite, pearls, aquamarine and other semi-precious gemstones. Gold and silver jewelry are classics that never go out of style, along with fine watches, which are always a welcome gift. As always, Jeff and Brett encourage couples to visit a jeweler for a consultation and see all the latest jewelry trends before they make a decision. The rings that husbands and wives exchange are keepsakes that the couple will wear with pride for the rest of their lives, so the ring should be a good fit for the person wearing it. Jeff Whitaker is co-owner of Robison Jewelry, located at 217 Centre Street in historic downtown Fernandina Beach. For more information, call (904) 261-3635 or visit www.robisonjewelry.com.


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opportunity to select a dress that compliments her individual budget, body type, and style. RUSTIC GLAM: The rustic look remains very popular this year and now you are going to see added touches of glam. Weathered barns with chandeliers, candelabras, sparkle, and bling incorporated to make it more glamorous are among the trend. Sequin table cloths, shiny details and wood chargers for a rural touch, finished with soft pretty florals are a perfect example of rustic glam. CHANDELIERS: Chandeliers are very popular this year. From large lighted chandeliers on the ceiling to small votive chandeliers hanging from tents and trees, they all offer a beautiful sparkly backdrop at a wedding. Similar to rustic decor, you will be seeing this trend around for a while.

what’s hot IN 2014

By Lisa Presnell, PWC

AS WE ALL KNOW, THERE ARE NO COOKIE-CUTTER weddings. Every couple has their own preferences and unique style. Planning a wedding can be overwhelming. Fortunately, with Pinterest and other social media outlets and blogs, it is super easy to get inspiration from others. For 2014, you can expect to see some fun new trends. RICH COLOR: The hot colors for 2014 are orchid, purples, and plums. They are deep and rich. They really pop and stand out against the stillfavored blush and natural tones for the reception décor. From the deepest of color to the vibrant jewel tones, blues are a big hit this year as well. MISMATCHED BRIDESMAIDS: Everyone comes in different shapes and sizes, so why put all of the bridesmaids in the same dress? This year, many brides are choosing more mismatched bridal party attire by selecting a specific color or color scheme, and then letting the bridesmaids choose the dress that flatters them. Some brides are going so far as to letting the bridesmaids dress in different fabrics, colors, and prints. This offers each bridesmaid the 32 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

GREAT GATSBY: There is no doubt that the remake of The Great Gatsby has inspired many couples this year. The beautiful style of the 1920’s will transcend and certainly make an impression. You will see feathers in bouquets, faux fur, cap sleeved wedding gowns, hair accessories, and the classic bow tie, just to name a few. The vintage style is timeless and glamorous. A TOUCH OF ELEGANCE: Whether it’s a quaint backyard wedding or an exquisite affair, white glove service is making a comeback. You will see jacketed waiters with bow ties returning this year. It’s such a classy touch! FAMILY STYLE: Couples are steering away from buffets and plated meals and going for something a little more intimate with family-style service. It’s a great conversation starter at the table if you have guests that may not know one another well. Pass the potatoes, please! BIG BANDS: Inspired from the popularity of The Great Gatsby, big band music is what it’s about this year. Couples are choosing musical ensembles that range from ten to twenty members to get their guests moving and shaking. Forget the over-played “Cha Cha Slide” and get your groove on to the sounds of jazz and swing. Whatever your style or preference, continue making your own mark and bringing us some fabulous new trends. Happy Planning! Lisa M. Presnell is a Professional Wedding Consultant, Owner of Coastal Engagements, and lia sophia Fashion Advisor. Lisa offers over 14 years of wedding an event planning experience and has lived in Amelia for over 27 years. She can be reached at www.coastalengagements.com or (904) 206-3115.


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wedding scrapbook

ANGIE & SCOTT

CHRISTINA & DREW

LAURA & JOHN

AUGUST 24, 2013

OCTOBER 19, 2013

SEPTEMBER 29, 2013

TARA & JOSH

ASHLEY & ANDREW

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& NATHAN

JANUARY 18, 2014

APRIL 6, 2013

DECEMBER 14, 2013

NALLEY

PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY

RYALS

PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY

34 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

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Alfred Angelo introduces all over lace embellishment paired with the classic black and white which is very popular this season. This gown also includes crystal beading, sequins, and taffeta Åowers. Brides will love the rear of the gown with its black buttons introducing the chapel train— a signature detail of Angelo’s.

Below: What’s not to love about Monique Lhuillier’s dream pink silk modiÄed trumpet gown with a sweetheart neckline? The hand tufted skirt is so fun yet presents conÄdent elegance. This gown is sure to be a 2014 favorite.

be bold, think pink! If you’re looking for something besides traditional white, designers are ready to help with some bold ideas. By Julie Simmons BRACE YOURSELVES, BRIDES! DESIGNERS ARE GAMBLING WITH BOLD fashion trends this year in their bridal lines! If your taste veers from the traditional white, you’ve hit the jackpot this season. Designers like Vera Wang, for example, are thinking pink! “Pink as sensual, pink as seductive, pink as dreamy, pink as sophisticated, pink as strong, pink as cool. Think pink!” she says, and her line mirrors that description. The shades of pink this year vary from very bright shades to the more petal pastels that Monique Lhuillier offers. If pink doesn’t suit your palette, perhaps black and white is more appealing. This two-tone style is more formal, especially as 36 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

you prepare for a wedding in the later, cooler months of 2014. Linda Miller, owner of Custom Fit Alterations by Linda, is seeing beige, taupe, gray, and even pale blue emerge. “Brides should pair these colors with another bright color for accent,” she recommends. Like last season, designers continue to experiment with dress length. Brides, you better hit the stair-stepper at your gym if you dare to wear the innovative mini-gown. The short gowns’ styles range from daring to sweet. Carolina Herrera offers several she describes as “cocktail dresses.” The tea-length that emerged last season continues as a fun alternative to the riskiness of the cocktail length.


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Below: Monique Lhuillier continues with the dream pink silk palette in her gazar strapless column gown. It features a draped bodice and back bow train which is bold and makes the gown unforgettably unique.

Petal pink isn’t the only petal trending. Floral details on gowns are everywhere and absolutely beautiful. The flowers are embroidered in lace, emerging from designs made of tulle, in 3D, or even embellished on the gown in a contrasting thread color. If floral is too conservative for you, try feathers this season. Feathered skirts, trains, and hair pieces are all over the runway, and even on that little mini-gown. The open and illusion back that became popular last year adds a detail this season—crisscross in the shape of an “X.” The look is chic especially when offered in lace, crystal, or with a 3D flower securing the cross. Finally, the Kate Middleton lace trend continues. “Lace has made a serious comeback; it is being draped over tulle and chiffon for more romantic look in bridal wear. It is also used to cap sleeves, shoulders, jeweled necklines and swooping strapless gowns to add elegance and sophistication,” explains Miller. The bottom-line this season—you have bold and beautiful options! My favorite detail of the season is—if you like more than one detail, you can find a gown with it all. Designers this season have married different trends into their gowns, creating fashions never seen at the chapel before. Enjoy! 38 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

Brides will dazzle in Alfred Angelo’s chapel length gown. In sync with this season’s Åoral fashions, the gown features a 3d Åower crowning the organza - or optional printed organza—over satin. Angelo offers optional spaghettis straps and a modesty piece if you are bit more conservative with the sweetheart neckline.

Above: Monique Lhuillier’s Leaticia gown is delicate with its all-over ivy embroidered lace presented in ivory. The sleeves on this gown are stunning, but perhaps the most dramatic detail is the open backside of this gown inviting a sensual appeal.


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PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY

TRENDS IN

wedding Æowers & DESIGN

Natural beauty and old favorites make unique pairings. By Julie Simmons AND THE RESULTS ARE IN! THE FINALISTS FOR 2014 wedding décor are: earth, rustic, indigenous, vintage, bold—and preserved. Watching décor trends emerge is fascinating as designers continue to employ striking originality, using almost any item you can imagine as part of the design. Brides, to get started, think about what grows naturally in landscapes—ferns, vines, clematis, dahlias, roses, and hydrangeas, and pair these looks and feels with your favorite things—mason jars, vintage cloth napkins, or seashells. Be brave, be unique, and explore the presentation of something you love, whether it’s an antique buffet or a 1952 pickup! Local bride Amy LiPira is a great example. She had a vintage wedding celebration that included wooden floral crates as dining centerpieces, 40 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

antique timber doors to frame her altar, and a 1952 Chevrolet Truck onsite. “I believe the biggest trend is rustic vintage glamour,”confirms Brooke Raulerson, AIFD, CFD, FSMD, owner of Artistic Florist. “I am seeing brides bring out the natural setting by hanging glass and crystal chandeliers from the beams of rustic venues, or taking advantage of naturally large live oaks.” Jennie Stephens, owner of Red Otter Outfitters, mixed antique silver pieces, glass, driftwood, and aged books with white hydrangeas, snapdragons, roses, and baby’s breath to create a look indigenous to the setting of her daughter’s wedding—a perfect example of rustic vintage glamour. When it comes to bouquets, Amber Marvin, owner of Island Flower & Garden, is seeing the same trend. “We are interpreting for our brides a very freeform, organic scheme,” she says. “Lots of flowing designs using vines, branches, and larger blossomed flowers with simplistic color combinations. We are even using tendrils of clematis or jasmine vine to weave in and around bridal bouquets.” If your taste is a bit more formal or sparkly, the Roaring Twenties are still a huge influence in wedding dress and décor. This style brings forward more flashy components, such as peacock feathers, rhinestones, and pearls. Brooke is incorporating large glass jewels into ceremonies, bouquets, and chandeliers she’s designing, and she is quick to note there’s a fun color palette trending. “The color of the year is ‘radiant orchid,’ while purples, grays, and blues take second position,” she states. “I am more excited than ever to start pulling together the new textures and colors!” Amber notes that large blossoming flowers are very important this season as well. Couple those large blooms with bold colors for an individual look. Hot large blossoming flowers include coral peonies, gerberas, carnations, and sunflowers. Finally, my favorite part of vintage is that floral preservation is hot. Repurpose those flowers, ladies! Christina Cline of Luxury Floral Preservation specializes in helping you to remember your special occasion by preserving floral memories, right here on Amelia Island. Lately, she’s seen brides opting to preserve their floral crown more than any one piece, but a new art is emerging in the floral preservation business. “More recently, customers are coming on board with alternative options, such as press drying the flowers and creating art out of them—paintings, beads, jewelry, or—my personal favorite—bracelets,” she smiles. As you plan your 2014 nuptials, we wish you the best of fun! Tweet and share your favorite finds, and last but not least—congratulations!


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catering

FOR THE OCCASION

FIRST THINGS Q Date of the wedding, approximate number of guests, wedding venue Q Discuss options: sit down, buffet, food stations, or cocktail reception Q Price per person: make sure caterer’s price range fits your budget Q Start and end times for each phase of event Q Does caterer share your vision of the event? FOOD AND PREPARATION Q Opportunity for food tasting (Cost for tasting? Can cost be deducted from eventual catering bill?) Q Any food previously frozen or all fresh? Q Wedding cake included? Q Special menus such as vegetarian, vegan, special recipes or restrictions? BEFORE RECEPTION Q Hors d’oeuvres (Hot, cold, stationary, or served? How many and what kind?) Q Timing of cocktail hour to coincide with formal photos? Q Beverages (Punch, cocktails, soft drinks?) Q Children’s table? 42 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

AT THE RECEPTION Q Style of service: American (guests served from plates brought from kitchen), French (guests served individually from platters), Buffet (selfserve at buffet table), family-style Q Soup? Q Appetizer? Q Salad and/or vegetable platter? Q Will there be a choice of entrees? Q Any menu substitutions, specially priced children’s meals? Q Side dishes? Q Assorted relishes? Q Bread, rolls, condiments, dressings? Q Beverages (at the table, open bar, by consumption at the bar, rolling, juice bar) Q Dessert/Viennese table? Q After dinner drinks? Q Wedding cake (included in price? Additional cake cutting fee?) Q Ideas on how to decorate the table? WAIT STAFF Q Number of servers and bartenders Q Ratio of servers to guests (1 server to 16 at a sit-down meal, 1 to 25 or so at a buffet is one guideline) Q Cost of servers Q Dress code Q Gratuities included? MISCELLANEOUS Q What rooms will be used? Q Is the caterer familiar with the kitchen facilities and the reception room? Q What items, if any, will caterer provide (chairs, tables, flatware, dishes, glasses, linens)? Q Discuss price of above, and request samples Q Does the caterer have photos of previous events to show? Q Tables, chairs, utensils, dishes, paper goods Q Other party items (e.g religious items, place cards, table numbers, candles, matches, guest towels in restrooms?) Q Can the caterer recommend other weddingservice professionals? (Is the caterer acquainted with wedding planner, florist, or other professionals to be used?) Q Don’t forget to clarify details (e.g. cheese plate: what kind of cheeses included? portion size?) Q References are always a good idea Q Check for insurance coverage AFTER THE PARTY Q What happens to leftovers? Q Ask the caterer to prepare a “take-away basket” for the couple


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honeymoon

ON AMELIA ISLAND

By Karen Miller A HONEYMOON ON AMELIA ISLAND IS THE KIND OF vacation you dream about. With its exquisite, pristine beaches and charming island lifestyle, Amelia Island offers something special for every couple. This enchanting island paradise is abounding in luxurious accommodations, whether you’re looking for a sumptuous hotel or a quaint bed and breakfast inn. Amelia Island is rich in history and natural beauty, with plenty of Southern hospitality, and it has consistently been one of Florida’s most beloved vacation spots for generations. Throughout the island, you will find some of northeast Florida’s most exclusive restaurants, along with plenty of enjoyable things to do and see. For couples who love the outdoors, the island has lots to offer, from golf and kayaking to surfing and biking. Or, if relaxation is your preference, there are numerous places to enjoy spa treatments, fine dining, music, and art galleries. Still one of Florida’s best kept secrets, honeymooning couples can bask in intimate spaces, as Amelia’s tranquil beaches and cozy bistros offer the perfect spots for quiet times together. But if you’re up for some lively adventure, you can also try your hand at jet skiing, fishing, 44 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

surfing, or a host of other great outdoor adventures. With such an extraordinary place for a honeymoon, you’ll want to come back every year. Amelia Island is beckoning… come join us. Your honeymoon will be a dream come true! In the center of Fernandina Beach, The Fairbanks House has been recognized as one of the most beautiful bed and breakfast inns in the country. Recently named the number one property in Conde Nast’s 2012 Gold List, the inn boasts striking Italianate architecture, along with rooms that are charming and comfortable, many with Jacuzzis and private porches. Innkeeper and owner Theresa Hamilton provides wine and chocolatecovered strawberries upon your arrival, as well as spa robes, upscale amenities, and free WiFi in the rooms. “We cater to romance,’ says Hamilton. “We are all about quiet, romantic getaways, and we can accommodate every need.” Several of the oversized rooms even have small kitchens and all rooms have coffeemakers. A two-course breakfast, complimentary use of bikes, a pool and beach equipment, along with evening beverages and hors d’oeuvres, round out the carefree pampering that couples will remember for a lifetime. Equally charming is The Amelia Island Williams House, a beautifully restored Victorian mansion on a quiet street close to the town center. This award-winning inn features charming spacious guest rooms with working fireplaces, baths with whirlpool tubs for two, elegant bedding, and all of the amenities you need for an atmosphere for romance and relaxation. Their honeymoon packages feature chocolate-dipped strawberries, dinners for two, and romantic horse-drawn carriage rides through the quaint seaside town. A threecourse gourmet breakfast is served each morning in the dining room, plus complimentary beverages and snacks are available all day, as well as bikes, beach towels, and guest chairs for relaxing on the beach. Innkeepers Byron and Deborah McCutchen invite you to sit on their wide verandahs underneath live oak trees dripping with Spanish moss while you “wine” down the day, and enjoy views of their serene gardens, fountains, and koi pond. The Hoyt House Bed & Breakfast, located in downtown Fernandina Beach, is an elegant 1905 Queen Anne-style mansion of gracious living of yesteryear. Known for its inviting guest and sitting rooms, three-course gourmet breakfast, and luxurious amenities, this inn speaks of romantic elegance. Honeymoon packages include chilled


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Fairbanks House champagne and fresh roses in the room, the use of the inn’s bicycles, and a large heated pool and spa. In addition, the Hoyt House has a private two-bedroom, two-bathroom motor yacht available for full-day, overnight, or sunset cruises. Located just steps from the Atlantic Ocean is the Amelia Hotel at the Beach. This locally owned and operated hotel is convenient to area attractions, dining and shopping. “Our hotel offers spacious guest rooms with a location designed to leave guests with great memories at affordable prices,” says Holly Germano, General Manager. “Guests love the comfortable rooms with abundant amenities, Hot & Healthy Breakfast, as well as our evening refreshments—and our Lobby Lounge is the perfect place to enjoy a night cap.” A memorable place to spend your honeymoon, the Blue Heron Inn offers numerous packages that include special amenities for the bride and groom like champagne, chocolate-covered strawberries, roses, and a private horsedrawn carriage ride through the Historic District of Fernandina Beach. Located in the heart of the National Historic District of Fernandina Beach, the Blue Heron Inn Bed and Breakfast is only steps away from Amelia Island’s beautiful picturesque Victorian island village. Take in the sun on pristine beaches, tour historic sites, or browse numerous art galleries around the island. At the end of the day, return to the warm hospitality of the Blue Heron Inn and enjoy a drink poolside before dining at any of the exquisite restaurants. Amelia Island is also a great jumping off place for other destinations. The Travel Agency, a local, full-service travel source, offers a network of contacts and experienced and well-traveled agents who can provide honeymoon packages with VIP status worldwide. Honeymooning couples are known return again and again to Amelia Island, to recreate their special day. It’s an extraordinary place where new lives begin, and memories are made to last a lifetime.

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PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY

remembering Y O U R D AY

A guest book is a great place to start, but many couples are discovering creative ways to remember their wedding day. By Julie Simmons

AS YOU GET READY FOR YOUR WEDDING DAY, IT’S A good idea to think about how you will remember it. Talk to any bride and she’ll tell you that her wedding day went by in a flash. How will you ensure that the indescribable warmth you feel that day from those who love you will be remembered once the sparklers fade? A wedding guest book is a great memento, but how about creating an heirloom from this extraordinary day? Get started by brainstorming around your wedding theme. Invite guests to write a short message and autograph a keepsake related to the theme, like a surf board, oars, beach chair, guitar, vintage skis, seashells, or rocks to fill a glass vase. Lindsay Baer’s aunt gave her a platter with an image of the reception site painted in the center. “Our family and friends signed with their sentiments, and after the wedding we had it glazed; it’s a beautiful memory today,” say Lindsay and Matt. 46 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

Game lovers find it fun to have guests sign Jenga blocks. Or have a photo of the couple made into a puzzle. (Your favorite photo websites offer this.) Guests can choose a piece, sign it, and the couple can put it together each year on their anniversary. Creative brides are making art out of the guest book. Offer linen pieces and fabric pens for guests to sign, and a seamstress can later make a quilt. Another hot trending is to provide a painted tree and let guests stamp a finger or thumb print as the “leaves” on the new family tree. For your destination wedding, guests sign a globe, map, or write well wishes on a post card. A bridesmaid might then be responsible for mailing them sporadically throughout the year. If you want to add fun to the wedding day itself, Madlibs are a hilarious way to make the guest book memorable. (Websites are available to create.) Photo booths are also hot. Locals Shannon and Frank Basile offered a box of Halloween costumes so guests could dress up and pose for a photo. “We have an album full of laughs,” says Shannon. Other brides are having fun with cartoonists and silhouette artists. Another local couple, Whitney and Scott Chicco, hired a videographer to record well wishes. Guest books that keep giving provide memories for days and years to come. Provide strips of paper for guests to sign and glue to a strand of garland – the couple can detach a link each day after their honeymoon. I love the idea of an individual numbered guest book at each table. Guests at table “1” will write notes for the couple for their first wedding anniversary, and guests at “28” for the twenty-eighth. You might provide a jar and fill it with ideas for the couple: date nights, recipes, advice. Or offer a calendar and let guests sign on their birthdays, yielding messages for a year. The intellectuals might love the “book.” Guests can sign a favorite book, photo book, or children’s story, or mark their favorite verse in a poem collection. My personal favorite is to have loved ones sign next to their favorite verse of the Bible. Using a family Bible for this makes it even more treasured. “Nothing is ever really lost to us as long as we remember it,” said L.M. Montgomery in The Story Girl. Brides, start thinking now about how you are going to remember one of the most important days of your life. You’ll be glad you do!


get even more ideas at ameliaweddingsmag.com.

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AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS 47


island directory

A COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE TO EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO PLAN YOUR WEDDING ON AMELIA ISLAND

ALTERATIONS CUSTOM FIT ALTERATIONS 910 SOUTH EIGHTH STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 874-8944 WWW.CUSTOMFITALTERATIONS.COM

EVENT RENTAL & DESIGN ARTISTIC FLORIST 1430 PARK AVENUE FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 261-5546 (888) 261-5546

LINDY’S JEWELRY 202 CENTRE STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 277-4880

BRIDAL AND FORMAL WEAR; PROMS, BALLROOM, QUINCEANERAS

WEDDING DESIGN; FLOWERS & PLANTS; FURNITURE & CHANDELIER RENTALS; LINENS

BRIDAL SHOPS/GOWNS ALFRED ANGELO BRIDAL STORE 9344 ATLANTIC BOULEVARD JACKSONVILLE, FL 32225 (904) 726-8851 WWW.ALFREDANGELOSTORES.COM

BEACHVIEW EVENT RENTALS AND DESIGN 101-B COMMERCIAL DRIVE WOODBINE, GEORGIA (912) 510-3800 (877) 782-7368 WWW.BEACHVIEWTENTRENTALS.COM WWW.BEACHVIEWWEDDINGS.COM

ROBISON JEWELRY 217 CENTRE STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 261-3635 WWW.ROBISONJEWELRY.COM

A FULL-SERVICE BRIDAL SALON; GOWNS

LOVE BRIDAL BOUTIQUE 434 3RD STREET NORTH JACKSONVILLE, FL 32250 (904) 242-9800 WWW.LOVEBRIDALBOUTIQUE.COM A FULL-SERVICE BRIDAL SALON; GOWNS

THE BRIDAL SHOP AT THE AVENUES 9365 PHILLIPS HWY., STE. 101 JACKSONVILLE, FL 32256 (904) 519-9900 WWW.BRIDALSHOPAVENUES.COM A FULL-SERVICE BRIDAL SALON; GOWNS

THE WHITE MAGNOLIA 1716 HENDRICKS AVENUE JACKSONVILLE, FL 32207 (904) 352-3309 WWW.WHITEMAGNOLIABRIDAL.COM A FULL-SERVICE BRIDAL SALON; GOWNS

CATERERS HORIZONS CONTINENTAL CUISINE 5472 FIRST COAST HIGHWAY AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 321-2430 WWW.HORIZONSAMELIAISLAND.COM FULL-SERVICE CATERING; WEDDINGS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; BRIDAL SHOWERS

JACK & DIANE’S 708 CENTRE STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 321-1444 FULL-SERVICE CATERING; RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; BRUNCHES

PATE SUCREE MY PERSONAL CHEF AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 696-1677 (904) 556-1401 PATESUCREE@COMCAST.NET CORPORATE, PRIVATE, AND WEDDING CATERING

CHOCOLATES FERNANDINA’S FANTASTIC FUDGE 218 CENTRE STREET AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 277-4801 WWW.FANTASTICFUDGE.COM SPECIALTY CHOCOLATES; FUDGE; ICE CREAM

DENTAL CARE AMELIA DENTAL GROUP 1947 CITRONA DRIVE FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 261-7181 WWW.AMELIADENTAL.COM TOOTH WHITENING; SMILE MAKEOVERS; PORCELAIN VENEERS; BONDING FOR CHIPPED & STAINED TEETH

48 AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

TENTS; TABLES; CHAIRS; LINENS & ACCESSORIES; DANCE FLOORS; POOL COVERS

FLORISTS ARTISTIC FLORIST 1430 PARK AVENUE FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 261-5546 (888) 261-5546 WEDDING DESIGN; FLOWERS & PLANTS; FURNITURE & CHANDELIER RENTALS; LINENS

ISLAND FLOWER & GARDEN 5381 SOUTH FLETCHER AVENUE AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 491-5056 EUROPEAN-STYLE FLORIST; REHEARSAL DINNERS, COMPLETE RENTAL SERVICES; FUN TO FORMAL BEACH WEDDINGS

HONEYMOONS AMELIA HOTEL AT THE BEACH 1997 SOUTH FLETCHER AVENUE FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 206-5600 (800) 263-5428 WWW.AMELIAHOTEL.US WEDDINGS AND RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

AMELIA ISLAND WILLIAMS HOUSE 103 SOUTH NINTH STREET AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 277-2328 (800) 414-9258 WWW.WILLIAMSHOUSE.COM WEDDINGS AND RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

BLUE HERON INN 102 SOUTH 7TH STREET AMELIA ISLAND, FL (904) 445-9034 WWW.AMELIAISLANDBLUEHERONINN.COM WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; HOMEYMOONS; LODGING

FAIRBANKS HOUSE 227 SO. SEVENTH STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 277-0500 WWW.FAIRBANKSHOUSE.COM HONEYMOONS

HOYT HOUSE 804 ATLANTIC AVENUE AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 277-4300 WWW.HOYTHOUSE.COM WEDDINGS AND RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

JEWELRY AMELIA’S FINE JEWELRY 317 CENTRE STREET, SUITE B FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 277-0665 NEW AND ESTATE JEWELRY

JEWELRY; RINGS; GIFTS

JEWELRY; WEDDING RINGS; GIFTS

LODGING – WEDDING PARTIES AMELIA HOTEL AT THE BEACH 1997 SOUTH FLETCHER AVENUE FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 206-5600 (800) 263-5428 WWW.AMELIAHOTEL.US WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

AMELIA SURF & RACQUET CLUB 4800 AMELIA ISLAND PARKWAY AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 261-0511 (800) 323-2001 WWW.SURFANDRACQUET.COM LODGING; HONEYMOONS

AMELIA RENTAL & MANAGEMENT SERVICES 5299 SOUTH FLETCHER AVENUE AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 261-9129 (800) 874-8679 WWW.AMELIARENTALS.COM A FULL-SERVICE RESORT RENTAL COMPANY

BLUE HERON INN 102 SOUTH 7TH STREET AMELIA ISLAND, FL (904) 445-9034 WWW.AMELIAISLANDBLUEHERONINN.COM WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; HOMEYMOONS; LODGING

DAYS INN & SUITES 2707 SADLER ROAD FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 277-2300 WWW.DAYSINN.COM RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

HAMPTON INN AMELIA ISLAND 2549 SADLER ROAD FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 321-1111 WWW.AMELIAISLANDHAMPTONINN.COM WEDDINGS AND RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

HAMPTON INN & SUITES 19 SOUTH SECOND STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 491-4911 1-800-HAMPTON WWW.HAMPTONINNANDSUITES.NET WEDDINGS AND RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING; FUNCTION ROOMS

RESIDENCE INN BY MARRIOTT – AMELIA ISLAND 2301 SADLER ROAD FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 277-2440 (866) 245-6099 GROUP SALES WWW.RESIDENCEINNAMELIAISLAND.COM WEDDINGS AND RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING; FUNCTION ROOMS


island directory

A COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE TO EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO PLAN YOUR WEDDING ON AMELIA ISLAND

SEASIDE AMELIA INN 2900 ATLANTIC AVENUE AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 206-5300 WWW.SEASIDEAMELIAINN.COM

BAR ZIN BISTRO-WINE BAR 4924 FIRST COAST HIGHWAY AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 310-6620 WWW.BARZIN-BISTRO-WINEBAR.COM

LE CLOS RESTAURANT 20 SOUTH SECOND STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 261-8100 WWW.LECLOS.COM

WEDDINGS AND RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING; FUNCTION ROOMS

RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS

WEDDINGS; REHEARSAL DINNERS

BLUE HERON INN 102 SOUTH 7TH STREET AMELIA ISLAND, FL (904) 445-9034 WWW.AMELIAISLANDBLUEHERONINN.COM

OCEAN CLUB OF AMELIA 2080 SOUTH FLETCHER AVENUE AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 572-7998 WWW.OCEANCLUBOFAMELIA.COM

MUSIC RESORT TALENT 1941 ISLAND WALK WAY AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 277-2772 WWW.RESORTTALENT.COM DISC JOCKEYS AND LIVE ENTERTAINMENT

PHOTOGRAPHERS ISLAND PHOTOGRAPHY 1401 ATLANTIC AVENUE AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 261-7860 (877) 204-7114 WWW.AMELIAISLANDPHOTO.COM FULL-SERVICE WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY; PORTRAITS

PAM BELL PHOTOGRAPHY AMELIA ISLAND, FLORIDA (904) 277-9681 WWW.PAMBELLPHOTOGRAPHY.COM FULL-SERVICE WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY; PORTRAITS; ENGAGEMENT, FAMILY, AND CHILD PHOTOGRAPHY

PLANTATION PHOTOGRAPHY AMELIA ISLAND, FLORIDA ST. SIMONS ISLAND, GEORGIA (904) 277-5153 - AMELIA ISLAND (912) 996-4310 - ST. SIMONS ISLAND WWW.PHOTOSONTHEBEACH.COM FULL-SERVICE WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY; PORTRAITS

PHOTO BOOTHS ISLAND PHOTO BOOTH FERNANDINA BEACH, FL (904) 556-3048 DALLASBRASIER@GMAIL.COM WEDDINGS; SPECIAL EVENTS

RECREATION KAYAK AMELIA 13030 HECKSCHER DRIVE JACKSONVILLE, FL 32226 (904) 251-0016 (800) 30-KAYAK WWW.KAYAKAMELIA.COM KAYAK & BIKE TOURS; CANOE & KAYAK RENTALS

TRANSPORTATION MONTEGO LIMOUSINE SERVICE AMELIA ISLAND, FL (904) 583-7337 WWW.MONTEGOLIMO.COM PHIL@MONTEGOLIMO.COM WEDDINGS; SPECIAL EVENTS

VENUES AMELIA HOTEL AT THE BEACH 1997 SOUTH FLETCHER AVENUE FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 206-5600 (800) 263-5428 WWW.AMELIAHOTEL.COM

WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; HOMEYMOONS; LODGING

THE CRAB TRAP 31 NORTH SECOND STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 261-4749 WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; PRIVATE PARTIES

DAYS INN & SUITES 2707 SADLER ROAD FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 277-2300 WWW.DAYSINN.COM RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

FERNANDINA BEACH GOLF CLUB 2800 BILL MELTON DRIVE FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 277-7370 WWW.FERNANDINABEACHGOLFCLUB.COM WEDDING AND RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; BRIDAL SHOWERS

FLORIDA HOUSE INN 22 SOUTH THURD STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 491-3322 WWW.FLORIDAHOUSEINN.COM WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

HAMPTON INN & SUITES 19 SOUTH SECOND STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 491-4911 1-800-HAMPTON WWW.HAMPTONINNANDSUITES.NET WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING; FUNCTION ROOMS

HORIZONS CONTINENTAL CUISINE 5472 FIRST COAST HIGHWAY AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 321-2430 WWW.HORIZONSAMELIAISLAND.COM RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; BRIDAL SHOWERS

HOYT HOUSE 804 ATLANTIC AVENUE AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 277-4300 WWW.HOYTHOUSE.COM WEDDINGS AND RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

JACK & DIANE’S 708 CENTRE STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 321-1444

WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; PRIVATE PARTIES

AMELIA ISLAND WILLIAMS HOUSE 103 SOUTH NINTH STREET AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 277-2328 (800) 414-9258 WWW.WILLIAMSHOUSE.COM

JOE’S 2ND STREET BISTRO 14 SOUTH SECOND STREET AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 321-2558 WWW.JOESBISTRO.COM

WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING

WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; BRIDAL PARTIES

OYSTER BAY YACHT CLUB 96732 BAY VIEW DRIVE FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 261-4773 WWW.OYSTERBAYYACHTCLUB.COM WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; FUNCTION ROOMS

PEPPER’S MEXICAN GRILL & CANTINA 530 CENTRE STREET FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 277-2011 WWW.PEPPERSMEXICAN.COM.COM REHEARSAL DINNERS

RESIDENCE INN BY MARRIOTT ~ AMELIA ISLAND 2301 SADLER ROAD FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 277-2440 (866) 245-6099 GROUP SALES WWW.RESIDENCEINNAMELIAISLAND.COM WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING; FUNCTION ROOMS

THE RIBAULT CLUB FORT GEORGE ISLAND, FLORIDA (904) 251-1050 WWW.THERIBAULTCLUB.COM WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; FUNCTION ROOMS

SEASIDE AMELIA INN 2900 ATLANTIC AVENUE AMELIA ISLAND, FL 32034 (904) 206-5300 WWW.SEASIDEAMELIAINN.COM WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; HONEYMOONS; LODGING; FUNCTION ROOMS

SLIDERS SEASIDE GRILL 1998 SOUTH FLETCHER AVENUE FERNANDINA BEACH, FL 32034 (904) 277-6652 WWW.SLIDERSSEASIDE.COM RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS

WEDDING CONSULTANTS COASTAL ENGAGEMENTS LISA PRESNELL (904) 206-3155 WWW.COASTALENGAGEMENTS.COM WEDDING AND EVENT PLANNING; CRUISE AND ALL-INCLUSIVE TRAVEL COORDINATION

WEDDINGS & RECEPTIONS; REHEARSAL DINNERS; PRIVATE DINING ROOMS

AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS iii


THE OCEAN CLUB OF AMELIA OFFERS

the perfect oceanfront setting for your special day.

The coastal cottage atmosphere of the Ocean Club overlooks the whimsical dunes and renowned shorelines that form beautiful Amelia Island. Our exterior and interior seating offers spectacular oceanfront views to compliment any occassion. Whether you are planning a wedding celebration, business meeting, or any another special event, the Ocean Club of Amelia is the ideal setting! oceanclubofamelia.com | 904.277.6652 iv AMELIA ISLAND WEDDINGS

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Amelia Island Weddings - Spring 2014  

Amelia Island Weddings - Spring 2014  

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