When Pam asked me to photograph her Park Hyatt Beaver Creek wedding, I was over-the-moon thrilled. It is always such an honor to be asked to document a day as significant as a wedding, and it meant so much to me that Pam, one of my best friends from my college years, had invited me in to celebrate this special occasion with her and everyone important to her and her fiancé, Will.
Pam and I attended Colorado Sate University in Fort Collins together for our undergraduate degrees, where we spent many nights dancing at (and on) our favorite college bar, Zydeco’s, and swinging through the McDonald’s drive-thru at two in the morning for chicken nuggets and cheeseburgers. Somehow, we managed to get schoolwork done in between those times and graduated together in 2008.
One of my favorite memories of my time at CSU was when Pam and I took a road trip to California and Las Vegas one summer. We left Fort Collins at 12 a.m. in my shitty blue Ford Focus and drove through the night til we ended up at my grandma’s house in Palo Alto the following afternoon. We sang along to ‘N Sync, Meredith Brooks, and Nelly Furtado + Timbaland as we sped west (and I have the ticket to prove it) along I-80.
I had so much fun with her as we traipsed around San Francisco before ultimately maneuvering to San Diego, Las Vegas, and then back home, making stops at too many McDonald’s restaurants along the way. (I am seriously convinced that we single-handedly kept the golden arches financially afloat during our college years.)
This road trip really cemented our friendship together as one of those relationships that can stand the tests of time and distance. After graduating from CSU, Pam and I ended up going our separate ways across the country to pursue our post-grad careers. It had been a few years since we had last seen each other when Pam reached out to me about wedding photography, and I was overjoyed to hear from her and to meet Will.
Seeing the two of them together just made me so happy for Pam. As you can imagine, you see your friends go through crappy relationships all the time in your early 20s and through your college years (and Pam definitely saw my fair share of relationship trouble, too). To see her with Will, a warm, caring and thoughtful man, simply filled my heart.
Thank you again to Pam + Will for having me along at their Park Hyatt Beaver Creek wedding. It meant the world to me to be able to share these moments with you, and I hope you’ll enjoy the slideshow below of my favorite images from the day. Congratulations to the happy couple!
Venue: Park Hyatt Beaver Creek | Bride’s dress: David Tutera for Amanda’s Bridal | Menswear: Men’s Wearhouse | Floral: Petals + Pours | Hair + makeup: Allegria Spa | Officiant: Vail Area Weddings | DJ: Great Time DJ | Rings: Shane Co. | Bridesmaids’ attire: Amanda’s Bridal
Mini-interview with the bride, Pam
What was your favorite part of the wedding day?
I love that we got a little bit of rain but that it didn’t ruin the ceremony, and that crash of thunder right after the “in the presence of God” moment was amazing! I wore a little broach in my hair that belonged to my grandmother, and my sister had it in her hair at her wedding also. My favorite part was all of the time I got to spend with Will before the ceremony and all throughout the night. It was so fun and exciting and loving, I’ve never been happier.
What was your favorite thing to plan or design and why? What would you outsource if you had to do this all over again?
I would definitely try to budget for a wedding planner that could take on a lot of it for me! All the little details became a bit overwhelming and I needed a pro help me wrap my head around some things. My photographer extraordinaire was a big help! Planning the menu was the best. We got to make a day trip up the mountain and got to taste so much incredible food. We felt a little spoiled!
If you could give one piece of advice to other couples planning their weddings, what would it be?
Just enjoy it. It’s so cliche but it really does fly by, the day is here and gone before you know it so quit sweating the small stuff! Just remember that you’re about to start an incredible journey with your best friend and love of your life and that’s all that matters.
What did you do that was non-traditional or outside of the box for weddings?
I think the wine ceremony was a little unique. We got the idea from Tara, our officiant, which was pretty fitting because we’re kind of wino’s! We picked out three bottles of wine that we really liked and we put them in a box to open on our first, second and third wedding anniversaries. We intended to also put in notes for each other, but here’s a secret: we ran out of time and didn’t actually write our love notes yet! We put two blank pieces of paper in the box! We’ll eventually write down our thoughts and feelings, maybe some hopes and put them in the box to read on our anniversary.
Did you DIY anything for the wedding?
I ended up buying a few different things from vendors on Etsy (the table number labels for the wine bottles, the s’mores tags, the “E” for the cake, bucket list coasters and sign). We went to InVINtions in Denver to get the anniversary wine box, the wine and the bottles for table numbers. We put together the s’mores favors ourselves. My sister-in-law (brother-in-law’s girlfriend) did all of the chalkboard signs for us.
Where did you go for your honeymoon?
We went to Napa for a week. It was absolutely beautiful, and we marked our first item off of our bucket list by going on a hot air balloon ride!
Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Wedding | Ashley Kidder Photo
Hello, I’m Ashley and I’m a Colorado mountain wedding photographer! If you’re looking for mountain wedding photos like these, let’s chat! Click here to get in touch or contact me directly via my email/cell phone number below. I’m so looking forward to hearing about your upcoming celebration!