I really loved shooting this outdoor wedding. The day was really nice though windy indeed and though I’d never shot at the Flagstaff Nordic Center before, it was familar territory and looked forward to taking photos in the aspens. I arrived very early for the wedding, but it gave me the chance to walk around and orient myself.
The Nordic Center is just a little bit north of Flagstaff downtown off route 180. The drive is beautiful and when I pulled up I saw a nice large event tent, wedding party members were scurrying around picking their yurts for the evening. The Nordic Center has really been beefing up their game and more recently have several new yurts and some newer cabins (that I used once – it was fun!). A couple people from the wedding party would stay in the larger more modern facility that is the largest structure there. It’s where people usually check in for winter sporting and enjoy the warm fire. Upstairs there was a nice small finished attic with a kitchenette that can actually accommodate a few more people than were staying this time. I am really impressed with the use of the area for a wedding, it is perfect.
The ceremony set up was down a small dirt walkway and lead to a yard of white chairs tucked back into an aspen grove. There were two nice arbors one on the short path that led to the seated area, to walk through, and one over the alter. It was adorned with white toole and bright crayon colored flowers. It was an Alice in Wonderland themed wedding, after all.
We decided to take all of the more formal portraits before the wedding around 5 I think and I’m glad that we did as the sun was nearly gone by the end of the ceremony and that was perfect. I love shooting outdoor weddings but a lot of the time the timing of the event itself and not being able to control the conditions of the light in certain situations makes it a thrilling adventure.
Even after the day light was lost, night caved in to an illuminated tent and atmospheric dance floor that reminded me of lights in Paris at night when I went to school there. I don’t know why but strings of little globe lights really do it for me.