October/December 2014

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Light up the night

By Gwendolyn Shearman | Photography by Image Gallery

Posted: Monday, Mar. 26, 2012

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Haley Glenn’s and Holden Clark’s families were close friends, so they had some shared experiences even before they started dating. In high school the two were friends but things didn’t pick up until Holden, a senior, asked Haley, a sophomore, out on a date to Chili’s. “It was so romantic,” Haley says with a laugh.

Their families grew closer during the couple’s six-year courtship, even spending some holidays together. So Haley thought nothing of it when a trip was planned for all of them to Bald Head Island for Thanksgiving. After the big midday meal, the two families settled into their beach house to play board games. The two mothers proposed a walk on the beach, but Haley decided to stay behind.

The moms called the house and told everyone to walk down to the beach. The two fathers encouraged the couple to walk with them, and Haley thought nothing unusual of a beach stroll. Unbeknownst to her, a surprise was waiting. The moms had written ‘Haley, would you marry me?’ into the sand. The couple walked ahead of everyone. “I looked down and there it was,” says Haley. After Holden presented her with an engagement ring from Diamonds Direct, she says, “I was just freaking out, and of course I said yes! I looked back and our whole family was standing there, and everybody was crying.”

The most memorable parts of the December wedding were largely unplanned. For starters, Haley and Holden decided at the last minute to have their guests sit at their dinner tables for the ceremony. “Our guest list kept getting so big, and the venue wasn’t really big enough. I didn’t want everyone to be crowded, so we decided to just have everyone sit at their tables,” says Haley. “People loved it.” After Haley walked down the aisle in a gown from Bedazzled Bridal and Formal that fit her Southern personality, it was time to celebrate.

The candy-loving couple made sure to include sweets for everyone. Along with their five-tier cake, they had a chocolate fountain and candy bar full of candy apples, cupcakes, chocolate covered pretzels and even ingredients for guests to make their own s’mores. “We had tons of sweets. We love candy!” says Haley.

Another surprise came from a long-time family friend. “He always has these lanterns laying around for some reason, and he just brought them,” says Haley. Guests were encouraged to write best wishes and marriage advice to the couple, and at the end of the night, they lit the lanterns and sent them off into the winter sky. Image Gallery caught the entire winter wonderland – lanterns and all – on film.

The newlyweds flew off to Vegas for a six-day honeymoon before returning to Gastonia for the holidays. Haley says, “We didn’t want to go anywhere too far because we wanted to be back home for Christmas.” Haley and Holden are settling into married life and enjoying every minute of it!

Featured vendors

Engagement and wedding rings
Diamonds Direct
704-532-9041
www.diamondsdirectsouthpark.com

Photography
Image Gallery
704-869-8968
www.imagegalleryweddings.com

Continue reading real wedding stories! Up next: ’Traditions of Thailand’

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