Covid-19 Wedding - Party of 8


I'd Marry You in a Snowstorm During a Global Pandemic!

Their finding each other seemed perfect. Kate and Jared had lives and friends that overlapped during college circa 2001 but they had never happened to meet until 2018. Their friend-in-common, James, introduced them when they were both working near Pittsburgh.

Kate and Jared fell in love and planned a beautiful wedding for May 9, 2020.

But then came Covid-19 as a worldwide pandemic. They cancelled their European honeymoon. They cancelled the reception, hoping to try again in October. They called off the Bridal Shower. They wanted to try to keep their wedding day and just get married so they worked different angles and counties for a month as they pursued an online marriage license. It worked! Their priest was willing to marry them if the group was under 10 people, per the governor's recommendations during the Stay-At-Home Orders. It was happening!

Kate and Jared were going to be married!

The three of us nervously watched the weather. Usually May was lovely, but it was really cold and windy, threatening snowstorms. Sure enough, a snowstorm began as they drove from Pittsburgh to Altoona to the church where Kate's grandparents were also married. It was unbelievable. As I neared the church, I noticed a little bird, barely seen in the misty snow, fighting to stay in flight and not be tossed and turned in the wild winds. We'd never seen a May storm like this. When I pulled into the parking lot, I told Kate and Jared, "At least you can always say that you love each other so much that you would get married in the middle of a May snowstorm during a global pandemic. Nothing could keep you apart."

And so their wedding day began!



Labriola-Gorentz Wedding? Party of 8?

Her dress didn't come in in time. His suit didn't either. But he had a very nice suit at home and she bought a little white dress online that came just in time for their wedding day. They looked beautiful. Those other details didn't matter. They were getting married!

Kate and Jared both happen to be only children. I'm sure there were days over their lives that they wished for siblings; however, on this day when gatherings were limited to under 10 people, they coasted through with a party of eight. Each of them had their parents present plus me and the priest!

Outside Surprise Greetings

Well Wishes

Kate and Jared exited the church, unaware that their parents had planned for local friends and family ready with their congratulations. They were so surprised!

As they exited the church, a huge gust of snow and wind blew by, making for a very dramatic and emotional moment as they were greeted with much love.

Kids ran up to them with roses. People honked, gave gifts, held up signs and wished them the best. Kate and Jared were overwhelmed with joy anyway. It was magnified when the day became one joined in somehow with many other people.  It became a day of real celebration!

Reception - Tiny Group: Lots of Love

Wedding Cake:

They had cupcakes and a quick champagne toast in the back of the church before we caught a few gorgeous portraits and then Kate and Jared were back on their way to Pittsburgh. Kate's mother has been the principal at the school within the church where they were married. Her teachers had put together a "Congratulations!" bulletin board for Kate and Jared that was a cute backdrop and that was a nice welcome when they arrived!


Portrait Time!

The snowstorm stopped just in time for us to get some sunny, spring outdoor portraits of the bride and groom. I'm not saying it was warm! This easy-going couple alternated between posing for portraits and warming up inside of their winter coats. I love the shots we got! It was a sweet ending to their wedding.

Kate and Jared are wearing masks that are pretty special, by the way. Kate's aunt transformed her own wedding veil into a cute bridal mask for Kate and made a darker one with a little bow-tie on it for Jared. Even their masks were wedding-ready!

They drove off into the sunset, well... fading snowstorm, and picked up a delicous, fancy take out meal. They had a zoom call with their wedding party and were glad to be officially Mr. and Mrs. Gorentz!

Congratulations to the happy couple!

What am I about?

My business is about providing art opportunities in the Altoona community as well as portraiture photography work. As a creative person, I like to dabble in other areas that allow me to bear witness to others' lives and explore what brings us all together. Though If you would like to follow along, you can check out my last blog article or join my newsletter!


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