Married in Maryland: A Real Wedding Story


May 10, 2023
Words by Lauren Ertl
Photos courtesy of Monica Mendoza

Monica and Sean met with an unexpected encounter through mutual friends, leading them on a path of togetherness that would ascend to their wedding day in Newburg, Maryland. 


“Two of my childhood friends were dating two of his childhood friends. Sean had just got back from being in the Marines, and his friends were on the hunt for the best welcome home present—a girlfriend,” Monica says.

Despite the imminent separation as Monica left for Barcelona, their bond grew stronger through constant communication. After being gone for a few weeks, Sean decided he was going to visit Monica in Barcelona. 

“We knew this was risky business… a real make-it-or-break-it experience… and oh did we make it! Eight years later and we are married!” the bride says.

When it came to planning their dream wedding, Monica and Sean envisioned an intimate celebration set in a picturesque destination. Originally drawn to the idea of saying their vows in Barcelona, they faced unexpected obstacles due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“We just didn’t feel comfortable making our loved ones fly,” Monica says. “So, we compromised. I went to Google and typed in what I was looking for in a wedding venue: outdoors, small family-owned venue, driving distance, waterfront. When I saw Weatherly, it was over for me.”

The Pavilion at Weatherly, a stunning venue located in Maryland, instantly captured their hearts. Nestled along the Potomac River, this family-owned gem exuded Southern charm and natural beauty. Monica and Sean knew they had found the perfect location to begin their journey as husband and wife. 

Denise, the owner of Weatherly, and her dedicated team guided them throughout the process, connecting them with the best local vendors. Monica expressed her gratitude, saying, “Each person we worked with made us feel like our wedding was the event of the year. They were kind, personable, and went above and beyond to accommodate our unique out-of-state needs.”

The couple’s wedding day was an embodiment of intimate simplicity and romance. Monica’s love for neutrals and natural elements shone through the decor, allowing the venue’s inherent beauty to take center stage. Bridesmaids donned taupe dresses from the Dessy Group, with each choosing a style that resonated with their personal taste. Groomsmen sported navy suits, complementing the overall aesthetic. White florals with hints of taupe and pink, adorned with greenery, created an enchanting ambiance. Centerpieces featured a mix of low florals and high bunches of Ruscus, accompanied by candles of varying shapes and sizes. Unique touches included a greenery wall with a neon sign, a breathtaking champagne tower, and personalized koozies showcasing a custom drawing of the Weatherly venue.

Monica and Sean incorporated several unique elements to make their day truly unforgettable. Instead of a traditional wedding cake, they opted for a champagne tower and a delightful donut truck. A personalized seating chart titled “People We Love” and custom canvas hotel bags (designed by Monica) were created for guests to feel extra appreciated.

Ultimately, Monica and Sean believe that their wedding would not have been the same if it were held back home. Monica’s advice to other couples is to stay organized, plan early, and “trust your gut.” 

Vendors: Photographer: Monica Mendoza; Day of Coordinator: The Hitched Co; Ceremony/Reception Site: The Pavilion at Weatherly; Florist: J Starr’s Flower Barn; Flatlay Stylist: Hazeldust Studio; Stationery: Minted; Donut Truck: Sweet Street Donuts; Hair & Makeup: Miranda Paige Beauty; Gown Designer: Martina Lianna & Badgley Mischka; Gown Store: Seng Couture; Groom’s Clothing Designer: The Clothing Center; Bridesmaids Dresses: Dessy Group; Videographer: Sargas Media; Catering: Miloff’s Catering Inc.; DJ: Crow Entertainment; Violinsit: Tiffany Shanta of Steven Vance Entertainment

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