Sarah & Jonathan
SARAH AND JONATHAN MET AT A MUTUAL FRIEND’S GOING AWAY PARTY in the fall of 2012. According to Sarah, Jonathan is a charmer and asked her to get him a drink, which started a conversation. They ended up chatting all night and found out they had a lot in common.
“It was love at first sight! He is adorable and so easy to talk to. He is very funny and lights up a room with his presence,” said Sarah.
After several months of dating, the couple went to Cherokee, NC for an annual trout fishing trip with family. Little did Sarah know that Jonathan had planned on proposing that weekend and told his family the code word was “Big Foot.” At dinner, Jonathan told Sarah to come outside because he thought he saw Big Foot. Sarah was busy and ignored him until he finally convinced her to go to the door. Once she did, Jonathan got down on one knee and asked her to be his “best friend forever.” Sarah said yes and thoughts of planning their wedding began, yet these thoughts weren’t exactly happy thoughts for Sarah.
“I have never felt like a princess in my life. I didn’t have that prom moment. No sweet 16. Never been in a limo. Never had a professional picture taken. I’ve just never felt like I had a magical day which is every girl’s dream,” added Sarah.
In June of 2012, Sarah had to have immediate brain surgery followed by another surgery in March the next year. Finally healthy, these surgeries added up to thousands of dollars in doctor bills and definitely hampered their wedding budget.
Yet, their gloomy thoughts of planning a wedding were brightened when they learned about - and entered - a contest being put on by the beautiful Bella Collina Mansion... a chance to WIN an all-inclusive wedding of their dreams! With over 280 entries, Sarah and Jonathan made it to the final three and the deciding winner was then up to the voting public. The couple spent weeks rallying for votes, including appearances on stage at local bridal shows, air time on the local radio station, 107.5 KZL, and more. The contest received 126,000 votes and 76,000 of those votes belonged to the winning couple, Sarah and Jonathan! Talk about a shift in wedding planning momentum, and dreams coming true!
The next few months, Sarah and Jonathan spent lots of time getting to know the Bella Collina Mansion team and planning for their special day.
Sarah has a love for peacock feathers and the color purple, so she knew their day would incorporate this bright color scheme.
Still with the voting assistance from the public to narrow down their final details, their experience included “day of interviews” as they got to meet and select their favorite caterer, florist, baker, linen options and more.
Once the wedding day finally arrived, Sarah relished in this real life Cinderella story. From putting on her dream gown to the couple’s grand exit at the end of the evening this couple joined their lives together as husband and wife in a way they are sure to never forget.
When we asked Sarah how she enjoyed their wedding day, she said, “Thank you to all 70,000+ voters who made my dream come true. I have had the time of my life! My gratitude to every single one of you cannot be put into words. Thank you, Bella Collina, for making my life complete. My best friend is now my husband and you’re to thank for that, along with all of the hands that touched our wedding from the beginning. We love you all so much!”