Today’s wedding shows the beauty, versatility and value that comes with selecting a state park for a wedding venue. For $2,500, Breana and Josh rented 10 cabins for a the weekend, a commercial kitchen for food prep, an outdoor space for their ceremony and a reception hall. Moreover, they took those ordinary spaces and made them theirs through pretty and fun decor. Enjoy this fun and budget-savvy state park wedding! xoxo, Jessica
Breana and Josh
April 25, 2015
Greenville, SC | Camp Buckhorn at Paris Mountain State Park
What was your budget?
Our budget started at $7,000, but we went over on my dress and flowers so it ended up at $8,000. We spent $2,500 on the venue, $1,500 for my dress, $1,200 on photography, $1,000 on food, drinks and paper goods, $800 for flowers, $500 on gifts, $200 for table and chair rentals and the remaining $300 on miscellaneous decorations.
How many guests did you have?
Including the wedding party, we had about 90 guests.
What creative or personal aspects did you include in your wedding?
For our wedding, everything was personal! My brothers made the arbor for the ceremony, my dad and both sister-in-laws’ fathers cooked all the food, my mom put together the bouquets, my sister-in-laws and I did the centerpieces, a family friend officiated, and I baked and decorated my own wedding cake!
What was the biggest thing you did to save money?
Our biggest area of savings was on music. We used a Spotify Premium account ($10 per month) and a speaker my mom bought on Amazon which she uses for lots of other events. I created individual playlists for each part of the wedding (ceremony, dinner, dancing, etc), and had my cousin move the speaker or change the playlist as needed. It worked perfectly and was almost free.
What’s the best advice you have for planning your wedding now that you’re on the other side?
My best advice is to go with your heart, and do what you really want to do. Don’t listen to what other people think you should do, or feel you have stick with what is traditional. It’s your day, so make it special for you and your partner.
What was your biggest splurge?
Our biggest splurge was the venue ($2,500), however, we had it all weekend, Friday to Sunday. It included a dining hall, commercial kitchen, outdoor area and ten cabins for us and the bridal party, so it was definitely worth it.
What was your favorite detail?
Two of my cousins sang and played an acoustic version of Jason Mraz’s “I Won’t Give Up” on guitar as I walked down the aisle, which was so special. I also loved our “Unity Tree,” which we put dirt from each of our hometowns and then watered together during the ceremony.
What is the most memorable moment of your day?
It may be because it’s still fresh in my mind, but the entire day was memorable for me. We spent months planning and preparing so it was wonderful to see everything come together. The emotional few moments as the ceremony started and I was waiting to come out of the lodge, the couple of private minutes my husband and I had immediately after the ceremony, dancing for hours surrounded by family and friends… everything was amazing. I was also incredibly humbled to see how hard my family and friends were working to make our day perfect. Every part of our wedding was DIY… setup, décor, coordination, music, catering, breakdown… and it couldn’t have happened without some amazing people giving it their all. I am forever grateful.
Editor’s note: Due to the pandemic, some of the general wedding planning advice we share may not be applicable or possible due to restrictions on events. Please adhere to all current regulations and stay safe and healthy! Get more pandemic wedding resources here.