Photography by Brian Anthony Photography
“Our 50th surprise wedding anniversary was planned, designed, and hosted by our daughter, Blair and son, West. It was a most glorious and sunny day, radiant with the bold colors of the North Carolina fall as a backdrop. We only learned of the event when the kids arranged for a professional photo shoot held in downtown Winston-Salem. The kids selected outfits for both the shoot and the wedding.
“Sage green and eucalyptus are the favorite color and floral of both the bride and daughter. Since it was the 50th, gold was the primary accent color, and the bride wore a one shoulder dress formerly owned by her own grandmother worn in the 60’s.
“The couple exchanged gold watches after renewing vows. The bride’s mother (only surviving elder) gifted the bride with a gold ring that belonged to her (the mother) which was restored and set with her mother’s (bride’s maternal grandmother’s) original diamond. The 50th year son-in-law received a gold wedding band which once belonged to his mother-in-law’s deceased husband.
“The most unique aspect was the idea, creation, and exquisite compilation of the entire event given in unconditional love, respect, and appreciation by the couple’s children. Coordinated hands worked together to keep as much as possible a secret, even to the extent that Blair (daughter) “tricked” her mom (bride) into trying on a dress ‘for a friend of similar size/body-type who needed to visualize a dress she might like’. We both loved that particular dress on me the best!
“The location is a former boarding school for African Americans which was founded by a 19-year-old African American woman with a dream. It remained open until 1970 when a fire engulfed the administration building and decades of history were tragically lost. The bride attended the school in 1970, the year it was lost.
“The ceremony was officiated outdoors in front of the women’s dormitory steps where the bride lived while in attendance. The dinner and party were held in Kimball Hall, the location where all student scholars congregated for 3 meals a day, at the sound of the school bell, and while dressed in uniform-attired, emblem-themed embellished jackets.
“It looked like many original features from that historic time were still visible (rug, hardwood floors, tiled bathrooms, etc.).” ~ Kim