Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

Kendra & Joe

One of my biggest goals as a wedding photographer is to truly showcase a bride and groom's true personalities through their photos and, while that's not always easy as many people try to put on an idealized image of themselves on their wedding day, sometimes I'm lucky enough to find couples that can't be anything but themselves.

Kendra and Joe were one of those couples and their beautiful spring wedding day back on Memorial Day weekend was a master class in style, grace and lots of laughter.

Whether it was separate antique car entrances to their wedding ceremony or the amazing tux Joe picked out, this bride and groom had a clear vision for their wedding day and executed it flawlessly. 

And the result? Pictures that I know they'll look back on for the rest of their life and think "Yep. That was us ... and that was awesome!"

Kendra arrives to bridal prep prior to her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
A look at Kendra's dress prior to her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Joe smiles prior to his May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra has her veil placed prior to her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra looks outside prior to her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra walks down the stairs prior to her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra smiles prior to her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

Kendra and Joe's wedding day began with one of the most casual prep sessions I've ever seen as the groom arrived to the venue fully dressed and eager to get the day started ... and the bride just needed a few moments to slip her dress on, touch up her makeup and call it a day.

It was a relief to see how excited both this bride and groom were to say "I do" and there were absolutely no nerves on the part of either Kendra or Joe ... just an anxious excitement to get the party started. 

And I can't blame them. Talk about a perfect day and a perfect venue!

Kendra and Joe were married at Crystal Lake Golf Club and while I've shot a lot of weddings at this venue, I don't think I've ever had such a beautifully photogenic day weather-wise. It was a real treat. One we took full advantage of.

A look at the ceremony site prior to Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

One of my favorite moments of this day, without question, was the way in which the bride and groom entered their ceremony as Joe took a ride in a gorgeous red Ford Mustang and his bride-to-be had her father drive her to the altar in an antique Chevrolet El Camino. 

The sheer over-the-top nature of their arrival was enough to have the bride crack up in a fit of laughter as her father gave her away and led to one of my genuinely favorite moments of the day as Joe, the full wedding party, officiant and most guests also had a hearty laugh at how fun it all really was.

Joe arrives during his May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Joe arrives during his May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra arrives during her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Joe smiles as Kendra arrives during his May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra walks down the aisle with her father during her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra's dad gives her away during her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

Kendra and Joe's ceremony was short but super sweet and the perfect summation of their relationship together.

I loved how low key and casual it all was, what with just one reading, the vows, rings and kiss taking just 20 minutes in total. It was the perfect ceremony for a couple whose main priority was spending time with those closest to them.

Kendra looks at Joe during her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra and Joe hold hands during their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Joe looks at Kendra during his May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra and Joe listen to a reading during their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra smiles during her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra and Joe exchange rings during their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra and Joe kiss during their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

Following their ceremony, Kendra and Joe breezed through most of their family and wedding party photos as we had done a good chunk of them prior to the start of the ceremony.

And I'm glad we did because I had more time with this bride and groom than just about any couple I've worked with and with the light being just about perfect and the weather amazing, that meant we had a TON of time to walk the grounds of Crystal Lake and take as many formal photos as Kendra and Joe could handle before getting sick of me.

Spoiler alert: it was a LOT. 

Kendra smiles for a photo following her May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

Looking back on it, I'm pretty sure I could have photographed Kendra and Joe for another hour and never gotten bored with the two of them. 

They posed so naturally and so effortlessly you would have thought they've done this a thousand times before.

And, what made me more excited was how into the photos Joe got as we took them. I had him pegged as a "grin and bear it" type groom before the wedding but as we actually got out there and worked through some locations, he got more and more excited about getting great photos, even picking a few of the locations and poses himself.

Their excitement was key as I knew we would want to go back out for sunset photos. But, first, we had an awesome reception to kick off. 

A look at the place setting and invitaton during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
A look at a painting on display during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
A look at the centerpieces during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
A look at the tables during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

I loved the details Kendra and Joe had on display at the reception. I especially loved the painting one of their friends drew of them as it was such a unique piece that I've never seen at a wedding before and something I could imagine them hanging in their living room as a perfect reminder of the day they said "I do."

Speaking of great reminders of their day, I'd have to imagine any time Kendra and Joe hear "I Only Have Eyes For You" by the Flamingos, they'll remember their first dance. I know I will. What a timeless song for an incredibly timeless moment.

Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

Following their first dance, Kendra and Joe had two really funny but also sweet and sentimental speeches by the maid of honor and best man, respectively. 

The speeches were a great way to kick off a dinner period in which the bride and groom spent almost all of their time mingling with guests before giving into me one last time for sunset photos.

And, boy, am I glad they did as we headed over to the Crystal Lake dock and got what I think are some of the best shots of their entire wedding day.

Joe laughs during a toast during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra's maid of honor gives a speech during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra wipes away a tear during her May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Joe's best man jokingly dances during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Joe's best man gives a speech during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe pose for a formal photo following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

I absolutely LOVED the shots of Kendra and Joe on the dock at Crystal Lake. While I would have loved a great sunset even more, it wasn't in the cards this evening but the great effect of the reflection of the trees on the water more than made up for it. And what a way to start the rest of the night off as, with all the formal photos behind them, Kendra and Joe could focus on partying.

First came the cake cutting, which the two laughed through the entire time, and then two great parent dances between Kendra and her dad and Joe and his mom. 

Kendra and Joe laugh during the cake cutting during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra and Joe cut the cake during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra and Joe cut the cake during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra and her father dance during her May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Joe and his mother dance during his May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Joe and his mother dance during his May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

With the last bit of formalities behind them, Kendra and Joe took to the dance floor to really celebrate this life-changing day and I'm glad they did because their reception was an awesome mix of old, traditional wedding songs, 80s and 90s pop magic and current hits.

Needless to say, there weren't a lot of people who sat on their thumbs for this reception. No, this was a party. 

Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Guests dance during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Guests dance during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Guests dance during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Guests dance during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Guests dance during Kendra & Joe’s May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.
Kendra & Joe dance during their May 2018 wedding reception at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

By the time I got ready to call it a night on Kendra and Joe's wedding reception, I had stayed past my contracted time by a full hour. I don't do that often but, sometimes, I just can't help myself and NEED to finish telling the story of the day in front of me.

This reception was one of those times as it was a perfect reflection of a perfect couple. And I can't think of a better way for this bride and groom to start their lives together. 

So congratulations Kendra and Joe! I hope your wedding day was half as fun for you to live through as it was for me to document it.

And I know this is just the beginning of a life full of fun memories for the two of you. :)

-PJS

Kendra & Joe kiss at the end of their aisle following their May 2018 wedding ceremony at Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island.

The Vendor List

Photographer: Paul J. Spetrini, Paul J. Spetrini Photography; Hair: Sarah Rickaby, Signature SalonMake-up: Sarah Rickaby, Signature SalonBride's Dress: Allure Bridal from Alexandra’s BoutiqueGroom's Suit: The Black TuxCeremony/Reception Location: Crystal Lake Golf Club in Mapleville, Rhode Island; Officiant: John Weir IV; DJ: Anthony AvicolliCake:  Wright’s Dairy Farm .

Check out more of my most recent wedding blogs:

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Date: November 18th, 2017

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Paul J. Spetrini is a Rhode Island wedding photographer.

© 2019 Paul J. Spetrini Photography. All rights reserved.

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