My (original) Kentucky Wedding



My husband and I are celebrating ten years of marriage this summer with a vow renewal ceremony in July. Before I share the specifics of that party, I thought I would share some of the fun Kentucky details of our first ceremony a decade ago.

We got married in my hometown of Paducah, Kentucky, and I wanted our guests to feel my love for our locale. Out-of-town guests got the customary gift bags filled with local products. Everyone received Starnes BBQ sauce, a little Paducah pin, and some chocolate from a local shop.

I used Queen Anne's lace in my wedding bouquet as a send up to the local wildflower that grows like weeds in the hot months of a Kentucky summer. Even better, I'm reminded of our wedding every year as it springs up along roadsides and fills fields near my home.

The day of our wedding a summer rain storm came drenching the area and sending me into hysterics. Luckily, the rain stopped before our reception which was held in a restored home, with half of the tables being set up outside under the trees. Unfortunately, the rain turned the already hot day into a sauna-like evening.

We had a signature bourbon cocktail to help our guests to cool down. It was called a Trolley Cooler as a send up to the Paducah trolley car we took from the church to the reception. The cocktail was a shot of bourbon with a 1/2 cup pineapple juice and a 1/2 cup of cranberry juice. However, our "bartender" (who was really just a family friend) began partaking of the Trolley Coolers and by the end of the evening it was more like a cup of bourbon with a splash of pineapple juice and a splash of cranberry juice!

However, I think the crowd favorite of Paducah-specific details was our end of the evening treat. After a night of dancing (and bourbon), we pulled out coolers of Dip 'n Dots for our guests to enjoy as a final treat. Dip 'n Dots were invented and are manufactured in Paducah so I knew we had to include them. For years, I would have guests comment on the Dip 'n Dots and how much fun it was to have them at the end of the night.

I wish I had Style Me Pretty worthy photos of all these details but alas my wedding was before the age of photojournalistic style documenting of every little flower and flourish. Still, my memories are happy and I hope ten years later our guests still remember having a good time in the little town of Paducah, Kentucky.

~ Sarah Stewart Holland