Kristen and Mark’s Wedding at Catalpa Grove at Lakewood Park


Kristen and Mark’s wedding was smashing! They had an upscale rustic vibe day and lots of fun for good measure.

From the stunning outfits to the gorgeous lakeside location and the infectious happiness- the whole day looked incredible! It was a cozy celebration with their nearest and dearest.

It was such a laid-back and happy day, as you will see from the beautiful images.

Where did you get married?

Catalpa Grove at Lakewood Park in Barnesville, Pennsylvania

Why did you choose to get married at Catalpa Grove at Lakewood Park?

The venue is just absolutely beautiful and features a woodsy, outdoor, lakeside feel paired with the amenities and modern touches of a contemporary building.

Additionally, we were able to bring in our own vendors, making the wedding truly feel like ours, and the people who work at Catalpa are just incredible.

What was the most memorable part of your wedding day?

The most memorable part of the day was definitely being surrounded by all of the people that we love, and watching everyone have a blast!

Of course, all of the typical wedding items were great too – the ceremony, the first dances, the toasts – but nothing beat looking out over the dance floor and seeing everyone just laughing, mingling, and having a great time, and knowing that everyone was there to celebrate you as a newly married couple.

Kristen, paint us a picture. What was the theme, style, colors, and overall vibe of your wedding day?

Our venue was all wooden, almost lodge-like in style, and located next to a lake and campground, lending a natural woodsy feel to the whole event. We doubled down on that theme by using greenery and wooden pieces for most of our signage and decorations.

Our colors were dark green and lilac. The overall vibe of the day was upscale rustic – we paired the natural surroundings with more laid-back elements like station dinners, a campfire, and an ice cream truck, while the beauty of the inside of our venue gave the perfect amount of class to the whole day.

What was your favorite part of planning your wedding?

My favorite part of planning the wedding revolved around our guests (even though this is often the thing that people dislike the most!) I loved making the guest lists, sending the save the dates and invitations, and even making the seating chart.

The best part was definitely receiving RSVPs though – nothing beats the feeling of knowing that your friends and family will be spending your big day with you!

What was the best investment you made for your wedding?

There are three best investments that we made. The first one is simple – a great photographer! Photos are the things you’ll have forever, so this is one area where we spent a little extra, and I’m so glad we did.

The second is a prep day at our venue. This is something that not many venues offer, but I’m so glad that ours did. We were able to take the day on Friday to set up all of our decorations with our wedding party, have the rehearsal on site, and stay in the on-site cabins at night. Having that extra day made the wedding day on Saturday so much less stressful!

And the third investment happened a year before the wedding, right after we chose our wedding party. Most of our bridesmaids and groomsmen had never met, so instead of having an engagement party, we decided to do a weekend getaway with the wedding party. It was such a fun weekend to upstate New York and the wineries, and  everyone got to know each other before wedding duties began!

Is there anything you would have done differently?

Honestly, I can’t think of much that I would have done differently. DIYing nearly the entire wedding was a LOT of work, but it made the wedding truly ours and it was worth it.

What was your favorite part of using WedSites for your wedding?

I absolutely loved WedSites! My favorite part is how customizable the site is, and how intuitive the RSVPs are.

As someone who works in software systems, I’m always looking for the newest features, and Wedsites provided an amazing experience from day 1 through the wedding day. The WedSites team even occasionally made new features when I requested them, and the support was so quick.

Kristen and Mark’s custom designed wedding website

Wedding planning is notoriously stressful. Now that you’ve gone through the process, do you have any advice or words of wisdom for couples who are currently in the midst of planning theirs?

Just take it one day at a time! Thinking about all of the things you have yet to do can be stressful, but making a list and checking items off one by one really helps put everything into perspective. And don’t forget to enjoy your own wedding day – it goes by so quickly! Make sure you take a moment, walk away, and just look at the event you’ve put together!

The amazing team of vendors involved with this wedding

Venue: Catalpa Grove at Lakewood Park
Photographer: Marshall Scott Photography
Officiant: Storied Celebrations
Caterer: Craft Catering
Cake Baker: Alison Rainis
Entertainment: Gatsby Sound & Lighting
Florist: Sola Wood Flowers
Hair and Makeup Artist: Makeup by Roxy | Delila Christman | Paula Singer
Wedding and Bridesmaid Dresses: Azazie
Attire: Generation Tux
Jeweler: James Allen
Stationer: Truly Engaging
Videographer: Matt Patti
Other: The Ice Cream Truck 1961
Wedding Website: WedSites