A few weeks ago, Colleen and Eli got married in an intimate outdoor ceremony in the forest. Everything from final preparations to the reception took place at Camp Nawakwa, a Lutheran camp located in Biglerville, PA. (It’s in Adams County, if you haven’t heard of it!) This was the second wedding I photographed at Camp Nawakwa, and I hope I get the chance to do many more - it is such an incredible, stunning location! The camp has special meaning to Colleen and Eli, as Eli’s mother works there and he spent much of his childhood hanging out there. I love when my photography backdrops have such special meaning to my couples, and I could tell that everyone felt right at home there, in the middle of this charismatic forest.
Colleen and Eli’s wedding was casual, simple, rustic, and so unique. They described their vibe as “forest formal”, and I think that’s really the best way to put it into words! The adorable flower girls and the ring bearer (their adorable doggo Carly) definitely stole my heart!
We started off with a few family formals and bride and groom portraits at the Upper Temple. Both the view from up there - and the wind - took my breath away! We snuck into the adjacent apple orchard for a few fun photos, and I still break out in laughter-tears when I look back at them. (Eli took my prompt to act like he was kidnapping Colleen very literally! You’ll see what I mean below. I’m in love with the unintentional outtakes!)
Then we made our way back down to Fischer Chapel for a few more formal portraits, followed by their ceremony. As a wedding photographer, I’ve attended more wedding ceremonies than I can count - and Colleen and Eli’s ceremony was one of the sweetest and most engaging that I have ever witnessed. It was a perfect reflection of their relationship and love for each other.
After working through some technical problems with the golf cart, we finished up our portraits at Crafts Hall. Their cocktail hour, reception, and the best (and only) Cookie Table I have ever laid my eyes upon took place at the camp Dining Hall. Apparently, Cookie Tables are a tradition in some parts of Western Pennsylvania, where each of the guests bring desserts to contribute. I hope I get to photograph - and taste - more of these in my future! (No tasting was done at this wedding, unfortunately.)
Congratulations again, Mr. and Mrs. Dolly (and Carly)! I wish you a lifetime of happiness and architectural adventures together.