Glitz, Glam and Vintage Reception: Old Yarmouth High School: Kara + Joel

Back in January, I had the opportunity to travel to Costa Rica with Kara and Joel for their intimate beach wedding!

If you missed it, you can check it out here.

Fast forward a few months and I met with them again in the small Iowa village of Yarmouth for their back home reception. Kara is in the wedding planning industry, so I certainly expected a massive transformation of this old high school gymnasium. What I walked into was mind-blowing. I don’t think anyone in that area had ever seen anything like it.

This dark, dreary, run down gym had blossomed into a moody, romantic, glitzy, vintage wonder that felt as if I was walking into a Disney castle. The room flowed with colors of periwinkle, dusty blue, hues of blush, peach and natural greenery. Every inch of this venue was covered in precision and gorgeous detail. Along with down-home smoked BBQ and a full band to entertain, the rest of the night went off like a good old fashioned midwest party.

The combination of this small town venue charm and high-end city style detail was enough to make any photographer go nuts. Outside, the weather was too good to be true type of weather. The venue sat in the middle of a rural spread of fields and sky that was perfect for a few fun portraits in that area. As the sun set, we went down the road a few miles to private property near a small pond, and I was able to capture the most beautiful silhouette shots against the water to end the night.

I have to end this blog with an incredible Thank You to Joel and Kara for not only inviting me along to capture your wedding in Costa Rica and reception in Iowa but for truly being such cool, fun, laid back people that I now consider friends.



Here is more from the Bride about her Costa Rica Wedding and Iowa Reception: 

Inspiration: Wedding: Just a laid back cultural experience Reception: Glitzy Glam Vintage with inspiration from her constant research in the industry as a wedding planner + colors of periwinkle, dusty blue, blush, peach, natural greenery

Most Important Part of Planning: Wedding: Choosing a destination that was new to both them and their guests. Somewhere that offered a variety of activities to do. Reception: Finding a venue large enough and close to home. Also, finding a live band that was willing to travel to Yarmouth! Joel says the most important part was the beer, food, and music. Overall, photography was most important to them making sure to find a photographer that would go with them to their destination (Very Important!)

Favorite Details: Beach Ceremony   Reception: All the decor

Favorite Moments: Kara: Beach Ceremony and Dinner with all the guests that made the trip  Joel: Seeing Kara walk down the aisle and “how beautiful she was, also that you were crying and I was glad I finally locked you down;)”

Advice: “Never too early to start on the details! Do lots of research on Destination Weddings and talk with your travel agent!” (Or your photographer, I have lots of advice on destination weddings!)

Honeymoon: Costa Rica was their wedding and honeymoon, but they are hoping to go to Cuba next year too! (Kara, that is on my bucket list, let’s go together!)


Event Planning: Tamara Wendt Events

Destination Wedding: Riu Guanacaste, Costa Rica

Reception: Yarmouth High School, Yarmouth, Iowa

Flowers: Tamara Wendt Events, Christopher Crow, Moline Hy-Vee

Rings: Helzberg

Dress: Mikaella by Paloma Blanca

Suit: Moorman Clothiers, MaxMan Inc.

Live Band: Soul Storm

Catering: Cynful Smokers

Cake: Pies on Parade, Burlington, IA

Jewelry: Swarovski + Givenchy

Hair: Landon Minnis, Dana’s Total Image

Makeup: Landon Minnis and Natalie Dennier

Officiant: Juan Carlos

Travel Agent: Debi Hicks, Let’s Travel in Burlington

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