Like many couples, Andra and Billy met in high school. But what’s a little more unusual is that they met because Billy’s friend, who had a crush on Andra, had asked Billy to break the ice on his behalf. But everyone fell out of touch after high school, until Andra and Billy reconnected in 2013. The two dated for five years before Billy proposed at San Francisco’s Baker Beach. “Suddenly, he grabbed my hand and started telling me how much he loved me,” says Andra. “I thought, ‘oh, how sweet!’ But didn’t think he was about to propose until he pulled out the ring box.”
Andra and Billy planned a September wedding, both because she knew she wanted to marry in the fall and because a friend had gotten engaged at the same time, and the two wanted to space the celebrations out a bit to make it easy on their mutual friend group. Fortunately, The Landing Resort in South Lake Tahoe proved to be the perfect venue for an autumn wedding, especially as they were able to host their reception at the resort and host the ceremony across the street at the beautiful Lakeside Beach. They opted for a non-traditional ceremony incorporating a candle ceremony to honor Billy’s late father, security guard outfits and sunglasses for the ring bearers and a sparkly collar for the couple’s pooch, Allie. After the two were pronounced husband and wife, they walked back down the aisle under a cloud of bubbles blown by their 100 guests.
After that, it was on to the cocktail hour and reception, where Andra and Billy planned plenty to ensure their guests had an excellent time long into the evening. “We did Polaroid cameras and had everyone take pictures at the welcome table as they entered, and put them up on a big wood frame of chicken wire. That was so fun for everyone and we love all the pictures that were taken,” says Andra. In addition to a family-style meal at dinner, the reception included a sprawling dessert table with a wedding cake, cookies, candy, cupcakes and even a separate donut bar. Guests left the reception with pine tree sprigs bearing the message “Let Love Grow” to plant when they got home. “We get lots of status updates on how they’re growing,” says Andra. “And we love it.”
Andra says that the entire celebration was personalized to them, and she wouldn’t have it any other way. “The wedding was everything we wanted,” she says. “We didn’t really follow the rule book.” She says that while she loved the entire day, one of her favorite aspects was the fun they had with their kids. “They loved playing the roles of ring security and flower girls!”