Catherine and Jake McGuire consider their wedding a “mini-elopement.”
After getting engaged at the iconic Fairmont Banff Springs in May 2019, The Kitchener, Ont.-based couple began planning their relatively small 60-person ceremony in Muskoka for September 2020. But they, like many others, had those plans dashed by the pandemic. Keen to keep their original date, Catherine and Jake first pivoted to an intimate backyard ceremony before settling on a two-person ceremony — just them, and their officiant — at Kitchener’s iconic Langdon Hall. The mini-elopement, as it were.
“We had so many guests that were coming either from out of the province or out of the country that it just didn't feel right to have a party without those super important people,” says Catherine. “So we decided, let's just go for it.”
The ceremony, which took place on a Saturday, was preceded by a dinner — also at Langdon Hall — with eight of Catherine and Jake’s nearest and dearest. Guests were then welcome to join the couple the next day for lunch at the hotel, and to keep them company as they prepared for their 5 p.m. outdoor nuptials on the Langdon Hall grounds. But then, guests were asked to vamoose — as the wedding invites read: “At this time, we’ll be saying I do just us two!”
Catherine says the decision to keep the ceremony super-intimate panned out perfectly. “I would not change a single thing,” she says. “I think both of us were just completely relaxed. We felt like we could fully be ourselves. We could be in the moment without being distracted: We laughed when we wanted to, we cried when we wanted to.”
And post-ceremony, the couple kept their celebrations appropriately low-key: “For dinner, we ended up having burgers and fries at the bar,” Catherine says. “It was perfect.”
See photos of their pre-nuptial dinner and intimate ceremony below!
Photography: Whitney Heard Photography
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