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I’ve long pondered the wonderous beauty of being married in a xeriscaped garden in the desert, probably Vegas. It’s a central spot for my global family and it’s gorgeous.

Leaf Chapel

However, this Leaf chapel at the Risonare hotel resort in Kobuchizawa, Japan is a very persuasive vote for getting married in Japan. It has view of Mount Fuji and a series of other Japanese mountains. At the moment the brides veil is lifted, a steel veil “opens” to reveal the nature outside.

See more here.

Night shot

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In front of the Neon Boneyard

Title: "In front of the Neon Boneyard" (ed note: and infront of an amazing car)

Welcome to Danske‘s wedding vow renewal, done on her third anniversary…at a drive thru wedding chapel, in the front seat of a Volkswagen Jetta in Las Vegas.

Aforementioned Jetta, with groom and drive-thru window

Aforementioned Jetta, with groom and drive-thru window

I found Danske’s photos on Flickr, and they are lovely. To top it off, all of these photos are Polaroids. Man, screw proposing to my boyfriend, how can I propose to and marry this girl?

Back seat photographer

Back seat photographer

Danske may be better known as one half of the team that designs the headbands at Ban.do. It’s no surprise she has such great taste.

Source: Danske on Flickr

I think the general consensus when people think wedding and Las Vegas is an Elvis officiated quickie wedding, attended by a handful of loved ones and witnesses. Hell, I held this viewpoint for a long time, even after having been to Vegas almost a half dozen times. However, I have to admit I’ve long been coveting a Vegas wedding…I love that city.

But, onto my post! What we have here folks, is the most “Vegas” wedding I’ve seen to date. It could also probably be filed in the “things I’ll never have” box, but that’s okay, it’s not quite my style. I usually shrug my shoulders at so-called platinum weddings; I find little inspiration in their over-the-topness and I sometimes find them cold and, well, I can’t stop thinking about the cost. Ugh. But this one was a little different. Sure, it was a production. A complete show. Near spectacle! Oddly, even though it was pretty over the top (even by Vegas standards) everyone seemed so down to earth and authentic in the video clip I watched (link below), and just there to celebrate the couple, the families and life at a huge ass party.

The wedding took place in September 2007, and was held at the Bellagio and Stirling Club. Minnesotans Deepak Nath and Sarah Hlavka wed in an event that is up amongst Vegas’ most expensive at over $1 million (click here for more on the nitty gritty costs on Robin Leach’s Luxe Life blog.) The groom covered the cost.

21 groomsman and 11 bridesmaids. 650 guests were entertained by Bollywood performers, Cirque du Soleil acts, pyrotechnics and an elephant. Yes, ELEPHANT! Plus, I think it was catered by Charlie Palmer.

There was a film crew that shot the event and a photographer that documented the events over two days. What a blast. I hope everyone having a Vegas wedding that’s this fun and party-like, no matter their budget or number of guests.

Oh, and I hope everyone gets an elephant visit, too! 🙂

More:

Love the criss cross table styles.

The couples oak wood rings

The couple's oak wood rings

Perhaps you’ve heard of the 100 mile movement. Driven by a desire to decrease carbon footprints and gain understanding of where food and other everyday items are sourced, some people have begun to only consume items that come from a 100 mile radius of their home (aka being “locavore.”)

See the 100 Mile Diet, for example, a book created by British Columbians Alisa Smith and J. B. MacKinnon.

The reasons on following the 100 Mile Diet? It boosts local economy, you know what you’re eating, you interact with your neighbours and community more, and you decrease the transport needed to bring in food from afar.

A couple in Calgary (arbourist Gerda Vester & James Edwards, a sustainability expert, coolest jobs ever) recently had a 100 mile wedding, using the same ideas behind the locavore movement. Their rings both came from an oak tree on their property, the food from farms around Calgary. They hosted 165 people at the homegrown affair, which featured local vendors, artisans and relied on neighbours and friends. It was ecological, environmentally friendly and probably pretty decent budget wise.

Some of the yummy dishes: potato-dill soup, rhubarb and berry crisps, lamb, chicken and beef roasts, as well as raw veggie trays and cheese platters, garnished with herbs and vegetables the couple grew themselves. Beverages included Alberta beer and vodka, and locally made fruit wines. As a fellow Albertan, I’m so proud to hear this. We’re a landlocked province and pretty far north, so we really rely on veggies and fruits shipped in for most of the year. I can’t even begin to comprehend how far in advance they had to plan what they wanted to serve and what crops were necessary.

Just such a wonderful wedding, with amazing sentiment and thought behind it. I’m sure it was a great party. Seems like something right up Sara of 2000 dollar wedding‘s alley.

Calgary Herald: The 100 Mile Wedding

Also: see the photo gallery of the event (hello red dress!!)