Keweenaw Peninsula Wedding on the Water – Marko + Sheena

by | Aug 20, 2021 | Upper Peninsula, Wedding/Engagement | 0 comments

Do Sheena and Marko look familiar to you? They might from their recent engagement session at Esrey Park! As I shared in that post, their schedule allowed them the flexibility to spend the month of July up in the Keweenaw leading up to their wedding. While we spend their engagement session on the western side of the peninsula, we spent their wedding day up and down the eastern coast of the Keweenaw, starting the day in Calumet and heading out to Gay, MI and then back into the Bootjack area.

Keweenaw Peninsula Wedding on the Water

Sheena has worked in wedding planning and had a clear idea of how she wanted their wedding to take place. When she contacted me last year about their wedding, she shared the following:

“I want the focus of my wedding weekend to be on people and place. When I typically plan a party, I always say that I like to look at it through a window from the outside to watch the magic happening – people coming together and connectingFor the reception, I am planning on a relaxed picnic atmosphere … so want to have picnic foods, blankets, lawn and board games, and conversation … The Keweenaw is one of my most favorite places in the world, and I want to highlight it, my favorite spots, and the connection that we have to the land and the outdoors.”

I’m happy to say that Sheena’s vision pulled through in every aspect of how the day played out. From the ceremony location on Portage Canal to the well-chosen details highlighting the Keweenaw (spoiler alert: pasty sliders!!) to the picnic blankets available for the guests at the reception – it was a truly unique and relaxed wedding.

Marco and Sheena have lived in a number of states, from California to Utah to South Carolina (and some in between), and their day brought together family and friends who have become family over the years. Old friends reconnected and new friends were made. Rob and I had the opportunity to have conversations with several of their good friends and loved hearing about their shared experiences.

Getting Ready

Marko got dressed for the wedding in a cabin on the water with some friends, including their officiant / fellow kiteboarding enthusiast. And – of course – Rascal was there in his little tuxedo! Marko wore his grandfather’s cufflinks and a custom bowtie made of acrylic with flowers which matched Sheena’s earrings (and more – keep reading!)

acrylic bowtie with flowers and grandpa's cufflinks
groom portraits blue suit
groom getting ready bowtie
groom getting ready cufflinks
groom portraits blue suit with dog

Sheena prepared at her grandmother’s Calumet home together with her cousins.

blue montana sapphire ring shot with lace
getting ready details lace and acrylic florals
bridal details floral and bw
bride getting ready tiara
montana sapphire ring gold
bride getting ready all who wander raven gown
bridal hair updo braid and twist
bride getting ready with all who wander raven gown
blue montana sapphire ring shot with lace

First Look at Tobacco River Park

Something I really appreciated about Sheena and Marko’s wedding is they scheduled extra time into their day to travel for their first look and have portraits after. That meant even though the drive ended up taking a bit longer than originally planned, there was still plenty of time without any rush!

You won’t find much when you google Tobacco River Park. Just outside of Gay, Michigan, it’s a little roadside park with water on three sides. It’s a great place to enjoy a picnic lunch or to cool off, wading where the river empties into Lake Superior!

We love doing first looks, and Marko and Sheena’s was no exception! Seeing the happy surprise and big grin spread across Marko’s face was so fun!

tobacco river park in the keweenaw peninsula of michigan
bride and groom first look
first look groom
first look bride and groom keweenaw peninsula
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park in keweenaw peninsula
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park in keweenaw peninsula wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park in keweenaw peninsula before wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom kiss veil shot black white
bride and groom portraits keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
acrylic floral bow tie and earrings detail shot
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
all who wander raven gown bridal
bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding
bridal portrait among pine trees holding bouquet from protea with raven gown from all who wander
bridal portrait among pine trees holding bouquet from protea
bride and groom portraits with pine trees and veil shot

Wedding Ceremony on the Keweenaw Waterway

bride and groom depart to wedding ceremony by boat
bride and groom arrive at keweenaw wedding via boat

Marko and Sheena arrived to their Keweenaw Peninsula wedding ceremony together via boat. It was so fun to watch the guests’ reactions as they saw them coming down the canal!

bride and groom hold hands and smile during ceremony
bride and groom exchange vows under pine trees

The pair each shared heartfelt vows with references to the things they had already experienced together, including the infamous camper renovation and the travel that ensued thereafter. With all of their adventuring, Sheena and Marko are ready for whatever fun is next!

bride places ring on groom's finger as he holds dog
bride places ring on groom's finger as he holds dog
keweenaw wedding ceremony with trees
bride and groom kiss with bouquet

Picnic Reception

keweenaw wedding

The rest of the afternoon and evening was spent relaxing and in conversation. Kids and adults alike enjoyed the lawn games and cooling off in the water.

picnic blankets for wedding
wedding favors preserves
pasty sliders as wedding appetizers

I don’t often share pictures of the food, but I had to share these pasty sliders – what a fun nod to the Upper Peninsula!

bride and groom on swing with dog
bride and groom playing lawn games
bride and groom kiss on swing with dog
bridal cake with sugar substitute wave design with flower petals
bridal cake with sugar substitute wave design with flower petals

Instead of a larger cake, the couple opted for a small simple bridal cake. The topper was designed to match Sheena’s earrings and Marko’s bow tie. According to the cakemaker, it is completely edible, “a sugar substitute melted down” complete with flower petals.

bride and groom portraits at tobacco river park beach before keweenaw wedding

In closing: Sheena and Marko, thank you for asking us to be a part of your Keweenaw Peninsula wedding! We had such a fun afternoon getting to know your family and friends. You’re an amazing couple and clearly cherished by the people in your lives. We can’t wait to hear where you travel to next 🙂

Wedding Vendors:

Photography: Enjoy the VU Photography LLC
Hair/Makeup artist: Roxanne Kangas (Chroma Salon and Spa Seattle WA)
Bride’s dress: All Who Wander (Wendy’s Bridal Columbus OH)
Bride’s Ring: Jonathan’s Jewelry
Flowers/bouquets: Protea Floral
Catering: Kangas Cafe
Day of Coordinator: Adria Laplander of Wedding Wishes

In Their Own Words:

“Veronica and Rob did such a good job with our engagement and wedding photos. From the first communication I was extremely impressed with her professionalism, organization, and care she has for her business and clients. You can tell that she works hard.

She was able to take charge at both of our chosen portrait locations to get us great photos, and incorporated our ideas as well. I would 100% hire Veronica again!”

Marko & Sheena.

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Enjoy the VU Photography

Hello there! We’re Veronica & Rob, Upper Peninsula wedding and portrait photographers.

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