Mountain matrimony

12/03/2012 6:31 PM

12/04/2012 9:56 AM

It had been a magical night for Christian and Ashley Davenport as they climbed aboard the trolley and waved goodbye to their wedding guests. During the winding ride to the Biltmore Inn, they reflected on the day and reveled at their new titles as husband and wife. It was their first real moment alone and they were basking in the glow. Over six years prior, Christian Davenport and Ashley Felthaus were just meeting in Asheville, N.C. They had both just moved to the area and instantly became best friends. “Everyone else in the world knew we should date but us,” says Ashley. “We could have fun together no matter what we were doing.” Finally, Ashley and Christian realized there was something more and began their five-and-a-half-year courtship. “I’m a patient woman,” laughs Ashley. Her patience paid off on Easter Sunday in 2011. Ashley and Christian were living in Florida, away from family, and were dead set on enjoying the beautiful day. On a whim, they decided to pack a picnic dinner and drive to the beach to watch the sunset. Just as dinner was approaching, the rain clouds were, too. Even though it began to downpour, they decided to stay positive and head to the beach. Just as they pulled up to the beach, the clouds parted and a rainbow stretched across the sky. As they sat on the beach enjoying the view and their sandwiches, Christian pulled out a ring and asked Ashley the four words she’d been dying to hear. She said yes! For the big day it was only fitting for them to return to Asheville, the place they fell in love. They were married amid the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains on the grounds of the Biltmore Estate. The couple surrounded their guests with homemade details from wood painted signs to childhood pictures. In lieu of a guestbook, they asked their guests to write words of wisdom on little cards and put them into a birdcage. The event hall’s exposed wooden beams and columns were covered with thousands of twinkling lights. The centerpieces looked lush with white peonies and blue hydrangeas and glass vases filled with lemons added a little twist. Food stations were set up around the room, serving Southern favorites like shrimp n’ grits and pork sliders. Their cornflower blue tiered cake was decorated with two, little hand stitched birds to represent the bride and groom. Lindsey Lee, Ashley’s photographer and high school friend, captured every moment of the day and night. “She made everyone feel so comfortable,” recalls Ashley. One special moment was when Christian joined the band to sing his favorite song, “Night Shift” by The Commodores. The night finally came to a close as Ashley and Christian were whisked off by trolley. All of the wedding guests waved goodbye with ribbon streamers donned with bells. Christian and Ashley have been enjoying married life. Since the wedding they’ve been vacationing on the Baltic Sea, working, and moving to Apex, N.C. They also got a puppy! “We’re just settling in and we hope to buy a house soon,” says Ashley.

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