Alina’s family has been friends with both Rob’s family and mine for as far back as we can remember. We’ve literally watched her grow up!
When Alina asked us to do her engagement session in Midland MI we said OF COURSE!
Although we couldn’t attend and photograph Tyler and Alina’s wedding, we were thrilled to be able to spend an evening with them at Stratford Woods Park in Midland, MI.
Engagement Session in Midland MI at Stratford Woods Park
Stratford Woods Park was one of the places Alina and Tyler were considering holding their wedding. Although they ultimately opted for a different location to accommodate family traveling from all over the state, Alina fell in love with the pretty wooded trails, grassy clearings, and of course Kiwassee Lake.
When Alina initially suggested Stratford Woods Park for their Midland engagement session, I was a bit skeptical but game to give it a try. The recent flooding had made our initial location a no-go. Alina assured me it was much prettier than the city park pictures made it appear. We decided if it was really not ideal when we saw it in person, it would still be early enough in the evening to head to a different spot with plenty of light to spare.
You can imagine my joy and pleasant surprise when we pulled in and Stratford Woods Park looked nothing like I had expected! Lush and green, it was the perfect blend of cultivated gardens and natural vegetation. And the beach!! Well – you’ll just have to wait and see the beach 😉 The only thing I will warn you about – if you’re visiting in June or July, be sure to pack the bug spray before walking the trails! Fortunately we had some in the car so it wasn’t too far of a walk to grab and run back.
Tyler and Alina, thank you so much for having us be a part of this exciting time in your life. Wishing you all the best as you start your new roles as husband and wife!
Midland Michigan Engagement Session in June
Warning – this post has more than my usual number of images, but I had such a hard time narrowing down my favorites to share! Every time we turned a corner there was another beautiful location different from the last.
Alina – don’t be mad at me – but you look so much like your mom here! (She’s gorgeous too, so jealous of these genes!)
This little patch of bushes and vines had me legit squealing with excitement. Usually it’s Rob who does the “shoot through the leaves” shots, but this evening it was my turn!
Stratford Woods Park Engagement Session
Something else I really liked about Stratford Woods Park was how peaceful it was. Because the park is located on the eastern edge of Midland, it’s a place locals visit instead of being overrun with tourists. (That’s right – I’m calling out The Tridge.) On the Sunday evening of Alina and Tyler’s engagement session there were people here and there, but we had plenty of space to ourselves. The park is located off of a main road so it’s pretty peaceful. As an added bonus, the property is large enough that we couldn’t even hear the kids playing at the beach until we were on the sand ourselves. Thank you Alina for discovering this perfect place for your Midland Michigan engagement session!
It’s a good thing Alina knew me so well already, because I was all excited over this perfect pocket of light peeking through the trees too! (I’m not sure what Tyler thought but he was a good sport 😉 I think I won him over by the time the evening was up.)
Stratford Woods Park Beach
I didn’t find out until after their engagement session was done and we were walking back to our cars that Tyler hates the feeling of sand between his toes. I had no idea! We asked if they wanted to take off their shoes and walk on the beach and they said sure! (Remember what I said about Tyler being a good sport?)
Not pictured in the images below: the kids playing and splashing in the water approximately five feet behind me who kept saying, “Why is she in the water with a camera? What are they doing?” LOL!
Second shooter: Portraits by Linda of West Branch, MI