A Loudoun-based photographer who was feeling grateful after a career of award-winning work said he wanted to do something to give back to the community.
So Robert Holley began to consider his options, and he eventually landed on offering a free wedding photography session for a military couple.
At a local networking meeting with fellow wedding professionals, Holley mentioned his idea. Several other businesses chimed in that they wanted to help too.
Soon, Holley realized there were enough businesses that wanted to participate that they could offer an entire wedding package giveaway.
“I am overwhelmed by the support,” Holley said.
Holley has created a website, Loudounisforlovers.org, that lists the 16 participating vendors and how to submit an essay to win the wedding package. The deadline to submit an essay is Nov. 17.
Holley said the group of vendors will narrow the essays down to four and then vote on a winner. All branches of the military are eligible as long as either the bride or groom are enlisted, he said.
The Loudoun-centric wedding and celebration will be held Nov. 17, 2019, at Kalero Vineyards in Hillsboro, which has donated its venue to serve as the wedding site. The site can comfortably accommodate up to 100 guests including three bridesmaids, three groomsmen, one flower girl and one ring bearer.
Also participating are Ford’s Fish Shack, which will provide the catering services, Pure Perfection, which will cater the desserts, and Sweetz Bakery, which will make the wedding cake.
Amy Thunell of Bluemont Vineyards will be the wedding coordinator, Jake Ritchie from Dream Day DJs will provide the music and Michael Stump from Tip Top Photobooths will be on site with a photo-booth. Salon Montage in Leesburg will handle the wedding party’s hair and makeup, and Point-to-Point Limo will do the transportation. Cathleen Titcomb will create custom wedding invitations, and Holley will be the photographer.
Holley said he is hoping this will become an annual event.
“I want to say to military families thank you for your dedication, thank you for keeping us safe, thank you for your hard work and long hours and thank you for enduring deployments away from your family. With respect, honor and gratitude, we offer a small token of appreciation,” Holley said.
Flowers will be provided by Rick’s Flowers and the officiant will be Donna Ruland of Any Time, Any Place Marriages.