Wow! What a time we are in! We have spent almost a year honoring the COVID guidelines so that we could honor our couples’ wishes to get married, no matter what. A great majority of our couples who got married this year either cancelled or postponed their big weddings, choosing instead to elope. We were happy to accommodate them. COVID continues, and we continue to honor the guidelines, so I wanted to give you an update of where we currently stand. Keep in mind that we offer officiant and photography services, we do not coordinate weddings, nor do we secure venues for you, although we are happy to refer you to venues. And we can do weddings at Logan Shoals Vista Point as long as you limit your total attendance to ten people. That’s the couple and up to 8 guests. We do not service the Emerald Bay Area. Here are the Nevada guidelines:

This is a graphic of the latest COVID guidelines in Nevada

In California the situation is a bit different, basically all indoor venues are not available right now, but do check with any venue you might be considering to see what they can offer you.

Basically, if you want to elope and have less than 8 guests coming with you, we can probably accommodate you at Logan Shoals Vista Point. If you have more guests, which really takes it out of the category of an elopement, you will have to check with your venue as to number of guests allowed.

During this time we’ve done a lot of weddings in private homes, hotel suites and AirBnBs. We’ve gone to RV parks and other parks to do weddings. Our territory covers Lake Tahoe (excluding Emerald Bay and the West Shore) as well as the Carson and Smith Valleys. That’s a lot of territory and if you have a venue in mind, we are happy to go there and officiate and photograph your wedding.

One thing about the wedding business is that things are always changing. This last summer we’ve dealt with closures, rescheduling and relocating, all due to Covid-19. I am happy to report that in spite of it all, our weddings have been successful, even if sometimes not as originally envisioned.

We specialize in elopements, which means we provide officiant and photography services to intimate weddings with groups of 10 people or less. If you have something with more guests planned, that moves it into the area of micro-weddings, which we are happy to consider on a case by case basis but micro-weddings do eliminate the majority of the outdoor locations that we use for weddings. If you already have a venue lined up, of course we are happy to come to you at your selected venue in the South Lake Tahoe, Carson Valley, Smith Valley or Topaz lake areas and officiate your wedding of any size, as well as provide photography services.

You may want to consider something most of our couples are doing: an elopement ceremony now, with a celebration to include your family and friends later. That way you can still get married and have a special and profound ceremony, and then be able to celebrate with family and friends later. The other option is to live stream your wedding. Our wedding couples have successfully used Facebook Live and Zoom to allow their friends and family to attend the ceremony.

Every wedding needs an officiant, and professional photography is always an excellent idea so you have those memories nicely documented and preserved. If you are seeking an officiant, either with or without photography services, I do hope you will call us and chat with us about your wedding.

Just a little bit more about our services: all our weddings are officiated by Rev. Karen Linsley. She is a licensed and ordained minister, multi faith trained, and can do weddings in both California and Nevada. She can do spiritual but not religious ceremonies, secular ceremonies, or ceremonies based in any religion. As far as photography goes, we are not one of those places where the officiant carries a camera with him/her and takes a few photos. That would be doing a disservice to our clients. Instead, a professional photographer shows up with lighting equipment to document both the wedding and get a full series of photos afterwards. What this means is we are not limited to certain times of day because we can light any situation. It also means your faces are nicely illuminated and the backgrounds also show up well.

Whatever your plans for your wedding, we hope you will contact us to see how we can assist you.

Things are beginning to open up in our area and I am so happy to say that we are once again performing weddings. We are using social distancing, which for us means standing about 6 feet away during the ceremony so as not to have to wear a mask, and wearing masks when we need to be in closer proximity to you or your guests.

Most of the venues we use are opening up again, and our favorite one, Logan Shoals Vista Point, is open as well.

The county clerks in Northern Nevada (Douglas, Washoe and Lyon Counties as well as Carson City) are issuing licenses by appointment only.

In California the situation is a bit different, with most county clerks issuing licenses to residents only and by appointment only.

We will continue to keep you updated as things change.

These are certainly interesting times aren't they? Our last wedding was a last minute one held just before everything closed down, on March 16. Since then I've been working from home, and while I am still answering calls for future weddings, we are not currently performing them, due to couples being unable to get wedding licenses.

In the world of weddings, there are two basic parts: the ceremonial part and the legal part. I can perform a wedding ceremony and make it touching and beautiful, but it wouldn't be legal unless the couple brought me a wedding license, which I then sign after I perform the ceremony, and turn back in to the county clerk. Without a license, the wedding isn't legally recognized, which means you can't change names or report your newly married status to all the different agencies that need to know such things.

As of yesterday, March 27, the county clerk's offices in Lake Tahoe on the Nevada side, Carson City and Gardnerville were all closed until further notice. Also as of yesterday, the El Dorado County Clerk's office (South Lake Tahoe California side) was issuing limited wedding licenses: only to El Dorado County residents and only by appointment.

Which means that unless you are an El Dorado County resident, you won't be able to obtain a wedding license right now. And we have no estimated date as to when things will change.

I remain available via phone and Zoom video conference to chat about a future wedding if you wish to begin planning.

Here it is August already! The summer is not yet over but we have certainly enjoyed officiating weddings at so many wonderful places! Here are some of the places we have been: Wellington, Nevada; Reno, Nevada; Carson Valley, Nevada, Genoa, Nevada, Incline Village, Nevada, the Tahoe Biltmore in Lake Tahoe, Nevada, Tahoe Vista, California, Truckee, California and private homes in both California and Nevada. We've been to meadows, beaches, overlook points and hotel rooms; we have even done a wedding in a parking lot and next to a trolley car!

About 95% of the work we do is with smaller, more intimate weddings, and we like it that way. Not all of our weddings have professional photography done, so we don't have photos of all of them. But when Image Angels does the photography, you can bet we've got some awesome photos!

This particular wedding was held in July, in Lake Tahoe, on a bluff overlooking the lake. The photography was done by Image Angels, with Pete Rezac doing the ceremony photos and Karen Linsley doing the portraits.

I really enjoyed being with this couple. We were making chit chat as we progressed along doing the photos, and at one point I asked the bride what she wanted to do for a living. She replied, with an impish little grin on her face, "I want to be a trophy wife!"

Cute couple, all the way around. I hope you enjoy the photos.

Most folks in the wedding business are a bit slow this time of year. The wedding business is definitely seasonal. This is the time when web sites are typically updated, advertising is chosen and implemented, marketing programs designed and begun. And most vendors are also booking weddings right now. With couples having gotten engaged over the holiday season, many are now making arrangements for their weddings to happen this summer, spring or fall. I've noticed a plethora of posts about receptions: the latest cake trends, information about DJs, decorating ideas and themes. And while I can appreciate a donut wall as much as the next person, the truth is that most of the weddings we are privileged to officiate at and photograph do not have receptions. Some of our weddings are the couple only, some have a few guests, and most never have more than twenty or so guests. Why is this? It's our specialty. We specifically market to those folks. I believe that even elopements deserve great photography and a heartfelt ceremony. Gone are the days of tacky "quickie" weddings. Well, actually there are still some folks who do provide those kinds of services, but we aren't one of them. We just want to see our couples have a great wedding experience, and awesome photos to back it up. You might say that our weddings are intimate. It's a good word for it. So if you are seeking a special kind of wedding, one in which the ceremony will be tailored to fit you and one in which you will have awesome photography to preserve those memories and show the family and friends left back home, check us out. We will go just about anywhere to accommodate you, and can help suggest some places if you are stuck or unfamiliar with the area. We will treat you the same as if you were one of those big production weddings, with dignity and willingness to be of service. We do same gender weddings, weddings with dogs, weddings in the snow, weddings on the beach, weddings with horses. We have done weddings with young couples, and weddings with couples in their golden years, and everything in between.

Here are some photos of recent weddings.

I know you are busy with the holidays. But did you know that as soon as Christmas and New Year’s are done, wedding vendors are going to get flooded with calls? According to surveys, 66% of all wedding couples get engaged during the time between December 23 and New Year’s Day. With an estimated 2.3 million couples getting married every year, that boils down to 1,518,000 couples getting engaged very soon. Here in Northern Nevada, according to the County Clerks that issue wedding licenses, in 2018 there were 6,750 wedding licenses sold in Washoe County and Douglas County issued 4,079 in 2017 (figures not available for 2018). In El Dorado County, which is where most Lake Tahoe weddings happen, they issued 3,076 wedding licenses. That’s almost 14,000 weddings just in this area alone. This area meaning South Lake Tahoe both the California and Nevada sides, Reno, Carson City and the Carson Valley.  That means you and 13,999 other couples will be searching for vendors in this area in early 2019. Simply put, after the first of the year, our phone will be ringing off the hook and our email box flooded with brides wanting information. The earlier you call and secure your reservations, the more choices you will have. Call us now to check out our services and packages! 530-906-9336 We service the entire Lake Tahoe, Carson Valley and Reno areas.

Another aspect to consider is that you have many more choices now that you did before.  Back in the heydey of weddings in this area, those wedding numbers were triple what they are now.  And there were fewer vendors to service all those weddings.  Now, you have at least three times as many  photographers, wedding officiants, hair dressers and makeup artists, florists and bakers to choose from. Those kinds of numbers mean you have lots of choices, but they also mean things might get a bit confusing for you.

Let me try and simplify things a bit.  ...continue reading

Now that winter has arrived we are beginning to do snowy winter weddings!  Winter weddings have their own unique form of beauty that consists of SNOW!

Remember to wear your long johns and snow boots, and your wedding can be just as beautiful as a summer wedding.

Here are few shots of some of our winter weddings:

Venues:  Edgewood, Heavenly, Logan Shoals Vista Point, Zephyr Cove

I loved the decisiveness of Shayna and Michael when they called to make arrangements for their wedding.  Although they had been dating for 6 years, when they decided to get married they acted on that decision right away.  We scheduled the ceremony for 4 days after that initial phone call.  They already had their wedding license, and 4 days was plenty of time for me to create a custom ceremony for them.  They decided they wanted our Elopement Special package, which is our most popular one, on the appointed day, we had a beautiful summer day with great weather for their wedding.

They wanted a ceremony with just a little bit of religion incorporated into it, so I incorporated part of the passage of Ecclesiastes 3 into their ceremony.  This passage is all about timing, and they felt the timing was perfect for their wedding.  We also had a more secular reading that talked about love, traditional wedding vows, and the traditional Indian wedding blessing for their close.

The venue was Logan Shoals Vista Point, photography by Image Angels.

Congratulations Shayna and Michael!

Randy and Gail came to us with a few ideas for where they wanted to get married.  Although they don't live in the area anymore, they used to and were familiar with this area.  David Walley's Resort was a strong contender for location since they were staying in the Carson Valley, and they were very happy to discover that Walley's was available on their date.

The couple wanted a ceremony with a religious theme, but they also wanted to honor their Celtic roots, so we incorporated a hand fasting ritual into the ceremony.

You can see that it grew quite dark during the ceremony, as they were late getting started, but we did some photos of the bride and groom before the ceremony began so as to be able to take advantage of the scenery.

Congratulations Randy and Gail!

Venue:  David Walley's Resort

Photography:  Image Angels, ceremony photos by Image Angel photographer Sarah Morey

Hair and Makeup:  Annette McCario, Tahoe Wedding Salon