When it rains on your wedding day, you splash in the puddles! At least that’s what Ashley and Kyle Burford chose to do when they were married recently at the Oyster Bay Yacht Club.
The couple met through mutual friends and soon realized they attended the same church. “We were just clicking,” Ashley smiles. “When you have the same morals, values, and priorities, it’s really easy.”
Eleven months of boating, fishing, dinners, and time with friends later, Kyle found himself on one knee. “We went on the boat to Cumberland Island, and I proposed underneath one of the beautiful live oaks,” Kyle shares. “After that, we took the boat back to my parents’ home, where we surprised Ashley with an engagement party and fish-fry with our whole family.”
And hours later, the planning commenced! “We shopped the different wedding venues from St. Augustine to Amelia Island,” laughs Kyle. But the couple quickly agreed when they came to Oyster Bay Yacht Club that there was no looking back. “It is exclusive and just naturally beautiful, and along with the services and flexibility they provide, it’s unparalleled.”
“Last year was a tough, yet amazing, year for my family,” says Ashley. “My mom was defeating breast cancer, and my sister and I both got married. When it came to our wedding, I didn’t want to create additional stress. Oyster Bay was the perfect solution.
“We had the vision for the décor, shared it with the team, gathered the supplies, and they delivered!” The couple was smart in their choices for the celebration, and the Oyster Bay Yacht Club team was able to pull everything together with a high level of design detail.
“Planning with Ashley & Kyle was an absolute dream. They are a lovely couple that exude a sense of sophistication, and an overwhelming kindness to everyone who crosses their path. They were so sweet to see interacting with one another in their planning; it was quite obvious they are a perfect match!” says Ashton Hunter, Oyster Bay’s Wedding and Events Manager.
“Oyster Bay let us have the whole place to ourselves,” says Ashley. “There wasn’t a wedding the day before, and there was no rush to cleanup for one the day after. This, combined with their commitment to handle all the details, freed me to enjoy my wedding morning sipping coffee and enjoying a mimosa instead of rushing around worrying about everything. It was amazing to be surrounded that morning by ten of my best friends and family —all the women I love—together,” Ashley reminisces.
As the big day was approaching, it looked like the weather wasn’t going to cooperate for the outdoor ceremony. With any outdoor event in Florida, a back-up plan is essential in case of bad weather, and Oyster Bay Yacht Club was ready with the perfect Plan B. “We partnered with Luxe Party Rentals to create a beautiful option for a rainy wedding day,” says Hunter. “Luxe provides a custom white frame tent with fabric draped poles and cathedral window sidewalls for an elegant feel. With the wedding tent placed on the front lawn, it still showcases the natural greenery and beautiful old oaks on the property.”
Meanwhile, the groomsmen were having a good time of their own—rain or no rain! “Our low-country boil rehearsal dinner was at the Golf Club of Amelia Island, so it was fun afterwards to celebrate at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island,” says Kyle. “The next morning, we enjoyed breakfast at my parents’ house and a little fishing on their dock before I prayed over our group and we headed with our umbrellas over to Oyster Bay.”
“No rainy day could damper the excitement for Ashley and Kyle,” says Hunter. “With the white tent set on the lush front lawn, the clubhouse provided a beautiful backdrop for the bride’s grand entrance, and Spanish moss and hanging oaks cascaded behind the wedding party as they said their ‘I Do’s.’ The ceremony included not only romantic raindrops, but happy teardrops from all who attended!”
The bride’s uncle officiated the wedding as a special touch, and Ashley’s sister was a soloist. The couple shared their first communion as husband and wife alongside a family Bible that has been in ten weddings over the generations. Family heirlooms had important roles as well, with Ashley including lace from her mother’s wedding gown in her bouquet and holding onto the handkerchief of her new father-in-law, Dr. Gerald Burford.
Surrounded by loved ones, Ashley and Kyle were inundated with best wishes, happiness, and love, as well as rain, on their beautiful wedding day. And they look forward to many more years of splashing through life together as a family, with a new arrival now on the way!