Fables, folklore, and gallant tales of bravery and love. This bride studied them all as a student of contemporary Irish literature. But amid a global pandemic, Makenzie Fitzgerald found herself in the midst of her own tale written under looming uncertainty. With a hopeful heart, she welcomed a turbulent narrative with the loving support of her gallant groom.
Makenzie Fitzgerald and Michael Penna had to plan their dream wedding while living states apart, with Makenzie in Atlanta and Michael in Oklahoma City. The couple met as students at Baylor University, so they planned for their wedding day to take place in the college town where they had fallen in love as students. Together, they booked an evening at a beloved local bookstore, Fabled Bookshop and Cafe in Waco, Texas. Friends and family would gather around bookshelves lined with the classics, playing board games and toasting craft beer. Makenzie was to wear an emerald green ball gown.
Their vision quickly changed as catering businesses and venues began to close due to COVID-19. As a result, Makenzie and Michael made the difficult decision to postpone their May wedding and instead tie the knot in April. Makenzie moved from Georgia to Oklahoma to shelter in place with Michael.
A Picnic Set for Ten
With their new wedding date fast approaching, the couple planned a picnic wedding at Will Rogers Gardens. They gathered blankets to lay on the lawn of the garden and packed picnic baskets, overflowing with fare for ten of their closest friends. “Much of the new wedding day was out of our control, and ultimately, we leaned into that and tried to find joy in being able to be together and share what we could with people we loved,” said Makenzie.
From Evening Gown to Afternoon Dress
With a new vision in mind, Makenzie tucked away her emerald green ballgown for a future day when it could be showcased in all its glory. The bride’s new choice was an understated afternoon dress, timeless in a crisp shade of white. “ModCloth was one of the first places I looked, as it is one of my favorite clothing stores, with such a great selection,” said Makenzie.
On April 24th, Makenzie greeted her groom in the Fabulous Fit and Flare Shirt Dress. She walked down the aisle in a pair of suede block pumps in light blue and a simple gold earring. Michael wore a classic navy blue suit with cognac oxfords.
Bidding Farewell to a Moment and Welcoming the Future
As evening descended onto the afternoon, Makenzie and Michael said goodbye to their guests. The couple embraced in the parking lot, watching the cars travel into the distance, their happy day coming to a close. “After this crazy, whirlwind day, the hectic month of a pandemic overturning the world, and over a year of living 800+ miles apart – we were together,” said Makenzie.
Makenzie and Michael were alone with the hush of the river, in the quiet of the park. Finally, they were together eagerly awaiting the promise of the future. Their story had only just begun.
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