Where To Have A Lighthouse Wedding In Los Angeles

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Today is National Lighthouse Day. Therefore today’s post is about lighthouse weddings

 On August 7, 1789, the United States Congress approved an act for the “establishment and support of Lighthouse, Beacons, Buoys, and Public Piers.”  It was two hundred years later that Congress designated August 7 as National Lighthouse Day. (1)

Lighthouses have always represented beacons of  of hope, security and safe passage, which may account for their popularity as wedding venues. You may be wondering where to find a lighthouse in the Los Angeles Metropolitan Area in which to have your wedding. The answer is you need look no further than the beautiful coastal city of San Pedro, CA.

The Point Fermin Lighthouse of San Pedro was built from California Redwoods in 1874. (2) It is part of the 37 acre Point Fermin Park, located on the southern most point of Los Angeles County. 

Ceremonies are not allowed within the lighthouse itself; however the gigantic and lovely fig tree pictured here will provide ample shade for your summertime wedding guests.

From Point Fermin, your guests will have panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean, breathtaking views of ocean sunsets, and on a clear day, one can see Catalina Island.

For more information visit www.pointferminlighthouse.org  

(1) National Day Calendar

(2) Point Fermin Lighthouse

Photo credit: Connie Jones-Steward

Leanne and John’s Summer Solstice Wedding

When Leanne and John of Asheville, North Carolina met they each recognized their twin flame in the other. They began dating at Halloween and were engaged before the following Christmas.

Leanne is a native California girl so they chose Giracci Vineyards and Farms of Silverado, CA as the venue  for their destination wedding. Joanne Tutweiler of Queen Tut Events planned the intimate wedding that was officiated by Reverend Connie Jones-Steward.

The summer solstice themed ceremony took place amid the vineyards magnificent Oak trees and included a blessing from the four  directions, a wine sharing, handfasting and jumping the broom.

  • Venue: Giracci Vineyards and Farms
  • Planner: Queen Tut Events
  • Officiant Rev.  Connie Jones-Steward

November Is A Tricky Month For Weddings

November in Los Angeles is an iffy month weather wise. I’ve been officiating weddings since 2010 and made it through two Novembers. In that time I’ve seen two outdoor weddings moved indoors due to rain and my garden wedding on 11/11/11 was touch and go for awhile until the sun finally broke through.

The moral of this story is, when planning an outdoor wedding in Los Angeles during the months of November through February it’s always a good idea to have an alternative plan. Have tents or an indoor space available just in case. If your plans include a dove or butterfly release, it would be wise to have a unity candle or sand ceremony setup available as an indoor backup. Finally try to book an officiant who will be flexible and calm enough to handle unexpected acts of nature.

Parasols or Bouquets?

It’s late August and for most of the country summer is winding down however, as we Southern California residents know, the hottest days of the year lie just ahead of us in September through mid-October.

Thanks to the famed Southern California sunshine, the area is host to many outdoor weddings held at beaches, parks, backyards and other open air venues. Outdoor weddings are beautiful but present a unique problem; how to protect the bridal party and guests from the harmful rays of the sun.

Wedding parasols and umbrellas provide a practical, inexpensive and colorful way to achieve this goal. Parasols made of paper or lace provide an excellent form of sun protection and can save brides and attendants from squinting during those all important wedding photos. Umbrellas, on the other hand, not only provide sun protection but also provide cover if your outdoor wedding is hit by an unexpected rain shower.

Protection against the elements is not the only reason to use wedding parasols and wedding umbrellas in your ceremony. Most cost less than floral bouquets and thus make a practical, cost effective, long-lasting alternative to bridesmaid’s bouquets. They can also be monogrammed and passed out as keepsake wedding favors.

Lastly, they provide beautiful photo props as demonstrated by my June 25th bride, Latasha, and her attendants.

Photo courtesy of Third Eye Open Photography.

Michael & Yasmine: Married Beneath The Full Moon

Most people probably spent April 16, 2011 stressing over the last-minute details of their 2010 tax returns however Michael and Yasmine chose this date to celebrate their love in an intimate wedding ceremony hosted at a private home in Brentwood, CA.

As the full moon rose in the east, the sun settled into the hills of Brentwood and the Pacific ocean glistened in the distant background the two exchanged vows in a couples-centered, non-religious ceremony that reflected their love for each other and their committment to create a new life together. Among the witnesses were a mother hawk and her hatchlings who watched from their nearby nest.

Afterwords, my husband and I joined the couple and their guests for a fantastic evening of mixing, mingling, great music and delicious food.

Outdoor Elopement Venues in Palos Verdes

I love being out in nature and performing weddings and other ceremonies surrounded by the sights, sounds and smells that are the gifts of Mother Nature. Today’s entry focuses on two beautiful outdoor wedding venues situated in the city of Palos Verdes, CA.

The first is the Roessler Point Gazebo that overlooks Malaga Cove and the cities of Torrance, Redondo Beach and Hermosa Beach. This gazebo cannot be reserved for private events so it would not do for a large wedding, however it provides the perfect backdrop for an elopement; that is as long as you don’t mind the occassional wayfarer wandering in while you are saying your vows.

 

The daytime photo above was taken by me, however this nightime photo was borrowed from the Palos Verdes Daily Photo blog.

 

 

 

 

The next venue is Farnham Park which is located on the grounds of the Malaga Cove Branch of the Los Angeles Public Library. This area features a gorgeous fountain and can be used without a fee or even a reservation as long as your party is under 10, however it is suggested that you do make a reservation with the city to avoid confusion should another wedding party want to use the location at the same time as you do. Larger parties require a permit from the City of Palos Verdes and in some cases a fee is required.

Candles in The Wind: A Wedding Day Fail

Candle flame

We all love candles. Their soft flickering flames have the power to evoke feelings of love, romance, promise, hope and spirituality. Perhaps that is why unity candles have become such a beloved part of the modern wedding ceremony.

However there is one particular type of wedding where unity candles can quickly spark feelings of frustration and even embarrassment as opposed to the more positive feelings mentioned above; that is the beach wedding.

Beach weddings are very popular in Los Angeles however Southern California beaches tend to be a bit windy and in this case the elements of fire and air are not on friendly terms. It is very hard to predict how windy it will be on the beaches of Los Angeles at any given time and even harder to get or keep your candles lit in even the slightest breeze.

If you want to incorporate a wind resistant unity ceremony into your beach wedding there are many options and alternatives and a creative wedding officiant will even be able to tweak existing traditions to fit your particular ceremony, as I did with the bread and salt ceremony for the couple that I married on New Year’s Day, 2011.

Some other beach friendly unity ceremonies include: jumping the broom, breaking the glass, handfasting or tying the knot, wine tasting and of course the unity sand ceremony.