All images by KELLY TURSO ©2017
Why they got married in the Gorge
The couple is originally from the Portland area, and they love the scenery and general vibe of the Gorge. They first visited Gorge Crest Vineyards in the dead of winter and it was covered in snow.
“But the moment we saw it, we knew it was the perfect place for us,” Claire said. They also liked the fact that many of their guests were able to turn the wedding weekend into a vacation, taking advantage of the many activities in the area.
All images by KELLY TURSO kellyturso.com ©2017
Wedding venue: Gorge Crest Vineyards
Where they live: Santa Clara, CA
Occupations: Claire is in supply chain administration; Joe is a tax accountant
How they met: In 8th grade science class where, by chance, they sat next to each other on the first day of school. Joe pestered and annoyed Claire, who would scream for him to leave her alone “while dying for more attention,” Claire admits. They briefly dated at the end of the school year, but Claire soon broke it off as they headed to different high schools. They kept in touch and by the end of freshman year, they were dating again and they’ve been together ever since — through different colleges and a stint studying abroad for Claire.
How they got engaged: Joe took Claire by surprise on her birthday. The couple spent the December day doing different activities with friends, with Joe secretly carrying an engagement ring around in his coat pocket all day. At one point, Claire asked to wear his coat when she was cold, but she didn’t discover the ring. He proposed as they walked among a row of decorated Christmas trees at San Jose’s renowned Christmas in the Park exhibit.
Number of guests: 140
Favorite detail: “The whole weekend was absolutely perfect from start to finish,” said Claire.
Unexpected moment: “We didn’t expect to have as much fun as we did at our wedding!” Claire said. She credits their wedding planner, who “was absolutely amazing,” for making their wedding day stress-free. “Everything was taken care of, leaving us nothing to do but enjoy the absolutely breathtaking views and dance the night away!”
Advice for other couples: Hire a wedding planner — you won’t regret it! Plan as much as you can and save as much as you can to avoid extra stress. On the day of, take a minute and let everything sink in. The day goes by so fast!
The day, in a sentence: “Rustic, carefree, heartfelt, beautiful and more than anything we could have ever dreamed of,” Claire said.
Honeymoon: (Switzerland, Germany, Belgium, France and the United Kingdom)
Wedding planner: Heather Sullivan, Love Notes (weddinglovenotes.com)
Ceremony & Reception: Gorge Crest Vineyards (gorgecrest.com)
Music: DMoeFunk (Dan Moe)
Catering: Celilo Restaurant (celilorestaurant.com)
Flowers: Lucy’s Informal Flowers (informalflowers.com)
Photographer: Kelly Turso (kellyturso.com)
Cake: Dream Cakes (dreamcakesportland.com)