With the groom a member of the Air Force, this pair played off his navy blue uniform with pops of color of coral paired white wedding centerpieces and bouquets. The couple was married outdoor under the trees at rustic wedding venue Cross Creek Ranch and celebrated at the venue's upscale barn.
Whitney and Andrew personalized their wedding by celebrating the bride and groom's military roots.
“Being from a military family and getting married to an Air Force pilot, we knew that we wanted to have the military incorporated, since it was a big part of our lives. Our wedding was on Memorial Day weekend, so we wanted to honor our veterans as well,” the bride explained. “We chose navy and coral because Andrew's uniform is navy, so I had the girls wear navy dresses as well. We wanted a fun pop of color, so coral was our next choice.”
While the groom is from North Carolina, the bride grew up near Tampa Bay wedding venue Cross Creek Ranch.
“The venue is right down the street from my parents' home, so it was nice to have a homey, comfortable feel. I loved that it's only a few minute drive, so I was able to get ready at home and enjoy the time before the wedding,” Whitney shared. “It was also nice to invite out of town guests to a nice Florida vacation.”
It was that hometown atmosphere that drew Whitney to choose her rustic wedding venue.
“We loved the family feel that was given for our wedding. It was as if every lady that sets up the weddings at Cross Creek Ranch were setting up their own daughter's or son's wedding. They take the time and care to ensure that every little detail was just right and taken care of. It makes it so personal,” the bride gushed. “We also liked having the inclusiveness of Cross Creek. Seeing as we weren't in Tampa to plan every detail and coordinate different vendors, it was great to be able to have only a handful of meetings to get it planned. Our wedding designer, Ilze, and our day of coordinator, Nancy, were beyond a dream to work with! They were so in tune to how we wanted the day to go that they were there to make sure it all happened.”
The couple gave a nod to their southern roots with their food and beverage choices, along with their entertainment options.
“We had barbecue with coleslaw and other southern fixings as our meals and drank out of mason jars all evening. We both love to dance and have a good time, so we had a good mix of music and also a variety of yard games including cornhole, giant Jenga, and horseshoes,” Whitney said. “We just agreed that we wanted a fun relaxed wedding where everyone could enjoy themselves.”
Looking back, one of the bride's most memorable moments occurred during the ceremony.
“We chose to write our own vows and Andrew just blew me away with what he wrote. He's always been more reserved with his emotions, so for him to be so open to me meant the world,” Whitney reminisced.
“We had a full military wedding meaning that my father, Andrew and both of his groomsmen were in uniform. and we processed out underneath a military saber arch.” – The Bride
After dating for almost three years, Andrew proposed when I was visiting him on my spring break last March. He was stationed in Oklahoma for pilot training, and I was in graduate school at the time so I came out to visit. We were spending the weekend in Oklahoma City and making it a jam packed weekend.
Prior to dinner, I decided to take a nap. When I woke up, Andrew had the ring out waiting to propose.
I asked, “What is that?”
His response was, “It can be yours for forever if you want.”
“We wanted a classy, but enjoyable time. We love all of our family and friends and just wanted them to enjoy the day as much as we did. It was perfect mix of fun and party, but still had the important sentimental moments for us as a couple.” – The Bride
“Cross Creek Ranch had the rustic, vintage feel that we had wanted. We loved the family feel that was given for our wedding. It was as if every lady that sets up the weddings at Cross Creek Ranch were setting up their own daughter's or son's wedding. They take the time and care to ensure that every little detail was just right and taken care of. It makes it so personal.” – The Bride
What advice do you have for other Tampa Bay Brides?
Enjoy the whole process! It's such a great experience and goes by so fast!
There are so many great vendors in the Tampa Bay Area so you do your research. It's your big day, so you want it just as you have always dreamed and you deserve that!
Trust that you will be taken care of. Cross Creek Ranch was accommodating to all our wishes and dreams. They truly will work with you to make anything happen for the big day.
Ceremony and Reception Venue: Cross Creek Ranch *Preferred Marry Me Tampa Bay Vendor
Photographer: Off the Walls Photography
Videographer: Bright Frame Films
Coordinator: Cross Creek Ranch – Ilze and Nancy
Florist: Alta Fleura
Caterer: Hungry Harry's Family Bar-B-Q
Cigar Rolling: Serafin de Cuba Cigars
Cake: Alessi Bakery
DJ: Grant Hemond & Associates *Preferred Marry Me Tampa Bay Vendor
Officiant: Chaplin Sonny Moore (Family Friend)
Invitations: Sprinkles Design
Dress: David's Bridal
Hair: Debbie Lowe
We are proud to have Cross Creek Ranch as a Marry Me Tampa Bay sponsor!