Kate and Dillan were married on March 4th, with a ceremony at the Sepia Chapel and a reception at the Ravine in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
Kate is a director of human resources, while Dillan is a Navy veteran earning his MBA from Notre Dame. The two of them love to travel together, from a babymoon to Maine, to a mission trip to Costa Rica, to a Florida vacation they booked after only dating for two months.
In fact, it was during that Florida trip their favorite story to tell happened. They were getting ready for their magical adventure, as they called it, and Kate gauged their time a little bit too short. They were still looking for parking an hour before their flight was supposed to leave, and by the time they got there, the airline employee told them they were too late to get their luggage on the same flight. But, since Dillan was still an active Navy officer, the employee wanted to do something nice to thank him for his service and allowed their luggage to fly on the next flight—first class!
With just 15 minutes to go before the flight left, they managed to rush through the security line with the help of an empathetic employee. They had only moments to run like the Home Alone family causing a scene in the terminal, but they weren’t about to give up. They booked it through the terminal and made it just as the airline was doing the last call! They could hardly believe that they’d made it and started laughing as soon as they were seated.
On their one-year anniversary, Dillan was ready to propose. He spent months trying to plan it perfectly and decided to take her out to where they’d had their first date: Buffalo Wild Wings. They had decided to go there because it felt like a low-pressure location at the time, and a year later, they ended up reminiscing the whole time they were together.
After dinner, Dillan took her to Arcadia Creek Festival Site on the pretense that he wanted to take her ice skating. He kept telling her the rink was just a bit further, until they ended up at Arcadia’s lit dome canopy. He got down on one knee and told her this was where he had first realized he was going to marry her—during an annual Rib Fest in August! Of course, she said yes, and she was far too excited to go ice skating after that.
Fast forward to the day of their wedding. Before the ceremony, when only a few people had arrived, I was able to stage a first look for Kate and Dillan. The chapel was quiet when they arrived, dressed and ready to go, but they didn’t want to see each other just yet. So, I had Dillan close his eyes, and he dutifully complied, before Kate slipped behind the chapel door. With their backs against the door, they slipped their fingers through each other’s. Kate had to wipe away a tear, and Dillan had on a smile worth a million bucks. Even I got emotional watching them.
Then, I had Dillan look toward the altar while Kate snuck through the doorway to stand with her back to him. Finally, I had them turn to see each other for the first time. Kate’s eyes welled up with tears again, and they embraced and kissed. I see a lot of weddings and meet a lot of couples, but their genuine, mature love stands out, as well as their God-centered relationship.
Family and God were at the center of everything they did, including the saying of grace by Dillan’s Uncle Tom, or “Z,” as he’s sometimes called. Along with giving praise to God, Z mentioned that they should always get along, even when the Lions play the Packers, which had more than a few people chuckling. Both of their parents were amazingly supportive as well, and their grandmothers were able to attend—Dillan’s Nan drove all the way down from Adrian, Michigan.
For the ceremony itself, Jeff Wenke, the pastor at their church in Portage, drove down with his family just to be there that day. Both of them credit him with growing their faith, so it was so important to them that he was integral to their big day.
Kate and Dillan are two very prepared people, which meant we had plenty of time in between the ceremony and reception for pictures. We got some great images at Pamperin Park as well as Lambeau Field, where the wedding party garnered a lot of attention from bystanders as we stood out in the cold getting these unique shots.
Then, it was time for the reception at the Ravine, where the owners had set up a fantastic light show that really makes photographs “pop” when capturing moments on the dance floor. During their first dance, partly through the song, the music changed, and Kate and Dillan executed a nearly perfectly-choreographed dance together. Dillan proved a Navy veteran can really tear up the dance floor.
Kate & Dillan, you two really make my job fun. You are photogenic, compassionate, generous people, and I couldn’t ask for anything more. There are times when I feel at home with a couple, completely comfortable, knowing they are in it for the long haul, and this was one of those times. I never wanted our sessions together to end! Congratulations to you both.