Music, dinner and dancing make for a night to remember.
É © Ð Ø Michael Harris and Kenny Park decided to get married in Michael’s parents’ backyard, they didn’t expect the event to be so much work. “A backyard wedding sounds casual, right?” asks Harris, a Vancouver-based writer whose book, The End of Absence, won the Governor General’s Literary Award for nonction in 2017. “But, when we got into it, we realized it would have been a lot easier to just rent a hall.” The challenge was making the backyard space work as a ceremony space as well as a dining area plus bar, and also accommodate a dance oor—but they did it. “At the end of the day we were pretty happy that it was there,” says Harris.
“I just wanted it to be a big party,” says Park, a storyboard artist and illustrator. For him, bringing in a dance oor was especially important. “Knowing my friends and family, we all love dancing and we love music, so I knew it was going to be a big part of what would make the night special,” he adds. To bring their backyard vision to life, the couple enlisted the help of planner Christina Sobrepena at Chatterbox Events for day-of coordination, who Harris says saved the day more than once: “We would have had a woefully understocked bar without her.” They also hired servers to pour drinks from a self-made bar and deliver dinner from a Tacono food truck, as well as DJ Diz to spin beats all night long. “It was important to us to throw the party, because we wanted to give something to our friends and family,” says Harris. “It was important for us, too, because we grew up in a world where [gay marriage] wasn’t legal. There was something a bit special for us, being able to stand in front of all of the people we love.”
FAMILY MAGIC In lieu of a ring bearer, Park’s dad made the wedding rings appear with fire (top left).
SUIT UP Keeping things casual with no ties, both grooms wore suits from J. Crew— Harris in grey, Park in tan (opposite, top).
SOLID GOLD Both of the grooms’ rings were made from gold donated by their mothers from their personal jewellery collections. “We wanted to have something that felt a bit more sentimental, or connected to our past,” says Harris (below).
TACO TIME Both grooms love Tacofino—and it was economical. “We didn’t want to blow our budget on fancy caterers,” says Harris (left).
DANCE IT OUT “The dance floor was really, really fun,” Park says. All of the kids were grooving within minutes, whipping out moves like the worm and showing o their mad flossing skills.