Let's say you live in Boston and you hop in your car and drive north for just 2 hours. You head up I-95 to exit 48, drive along RT-302 and then just when you least expect it you see this large wooden sign announcing "Migis Lodge on Sebago Lake". Take a left and as you drive down the path amongst tall pine trees you can't help but sigh and think "Ahhh, vacation"
You park up and see that Migis has 35 perfectly elegant yet rustic cottages nestled amid 125 acres of pine forest. You walk up the steps to the lodge, maybe stop for a while on the big comfy sofas in front of the always roaring fireplace. You check in and make your way to your private luxury cottage that has it's own porch with views of the lake, fieldstone fireplace (with daily firewood delivery by your fireplace steward!), beautiful quilts and fresh flowers. If the Queen of England decided to go camping, I think she'd maybe make a reservation at Migis :)
The property stretches along 3,500 feet of Sebago Lake shoreline in southern Maine. You're probably wondering why I'm telling you this, you thought this was a wedding blog not a "vacation in Maine" blog. But guess what? You can get married at Migis!
Yup - if you're looking for the perfect Maine wedding venue where you can say your vows under the pine trees on the shores of Sebago Lake then Migis is it! After the ceremony you're whisked away on a classic Chris Craft boat by Captain Tim - but more on that later. Migis hosts weddings in May, the first weekends in June, a couple of weekends in September and then Columbus Day through to the first of November. If you decide to get married at Migis you and your guests have exclusive use of the whole property - kayaks, swimming, horseshoes, bocce, reading by the fire. Having photographed 3 weddings at Migis (and with 3 more to photograph next year) I can 110% say that it's my very favorite Maine wedding location. Robyn, Jed, Maddy and the whole team are amazing at customizing each wedding and making it an absolutely perfect experience.
But enough about the wonders of Migis, you probably want to see some wedding pictures right? Amy used to vacation at a lakehouse near Migis growing up, she'd kayak with her sister Sara and a couple of times they'd be paddling along and see weddings happening on the shore. When Amy and John were looking for a wedding location Migis Lodge was the perfect choice. Beautiful letterpress wedding stationery by Parrott Design Studio:
Judy and the team at Flora Fauna made the beautiful bouquets and just wait until you see the centerpieces...
Some more wedding details. Love the rose gold wedding rings. Amy wore three strands of family pearls around her neck as her something old. Each bridesmaid was given a beautiful necklace with a personal note as a gift.
Audrey was over with John and the guys. John's Uncle Tim was marrying John and Amy and also made sure John's bow tie was perfect along with some last words of advice:
Back in Cliffside (Top Migis Lodge Wedding Tip - Cliffside Cottage is the PERFECT getting ready location. It's close to the dock where Captain Tim will pick you up and bring you over to the ceremony in the antique Chris Craft boat and it's really secluded and therefore perfect for a first look and pre-ceremony family pictures) Amy's mom Sally and sister Sara helped her into her dress and with her jewelry:
Love this next picture:
Amy's dad Michael hadn't seen Amy in her dress yet so he waited out on the porch with Sally. I should also take a second to say how incredible both Amy and John's families were - so welcoming and supportive and incredibly happy for Amy and John:
Amy and John wanted to thoroughly enjoy their wedding reception - including cocktail hour on the porch of the lodge, champagne, hors d'oeuvres and mingling with friends and family - so they wisely chose to do a first look to see each other before the ceremony and take all of the wedding party and family pictures without rushing. John is a joker and made a big deal of turning around but he couldn't help his giant smile when he saw Amy:
If I could only photograph weddings at Migis forevermore then I'd be a happy camper. The light and location is a photographer's dream:
One of the best things about doing a first look is that you get some quiet time for the two of you to hug/talk/kiss on an otherwise crazy day when you're pulled in a million different directions. When I got married I didn't see Paul thinking there would be this BIG MOMENT at the top of the aisle. The reality was me walking down the aisle like a deer in headlights and then no chance to say more than "Hi!" before the officiant starts the ceremony. Not the case when you do a first look!
Happy and relaxed family pictures:
Amy and John laugh a lot together:
The beautiful purple dresses by Alfred Sung were from the fabulous Flair Bridesmaid on Newbury Street
Amy decided to have her brother Tom as a bridesman - I love it when couples don't feel like they have to follow tradition and make their wedding party their own.
Time for a wedding ceremony!!!
When I was working out the logistics of where Audrey and I would be for the ceremony (Audrey capturing John's reaction while I photographed the processional of the families, bridesmaids and Amy and her dad) I felt like it might make sense to have a third photographer who could photograph Amy and Michael boarding the boat and could also go out to the point during the ceremony. I have a lot of photographer friends in Maine and the delightful (not to mention overqualified) Michele Stapleton kindly agreed to hop on over to Migis for an hour or two. These pictures of Amy and her dad are hers:
After a short sail, Amy and Michael disembarked and walked from the dock:
Uncle Tim conducted a beautiful ceremony with the perfect mix of laughter, emotion, thoughtful readings, personal vows and more (the wide shot from the point is Michele's):
One the best things about getting married at Migis is hopping onto the boat with Captain Tim for a short post-wedding sail. It's the perfect opportunity to have a glass of champagne and be all "We did it! We're married!". I loved how Amy & John's friends and family waved them off. Audrey took pictures from the dock and I sat upfront with Captain Tim to get pictures of Amy & John onboard:
Guests walked from the lakeshore up to the lodge to collect their escort cards and enjoy cocktail hour:
The lodge was transformed with a million twinkly lights, striped table runners and hundreds of individual antique glass bottles and vases each filled with white and purple flowers, fiddleheads and greenery.
Happy welcome and toasts:
Everyone enjoyed the dancing. A HUGE shout out to the Bob Charest Band who were PHENOMENAL. They played beautiful music during cocktail hour and then had the dancefloor packed all night. Everything from Blurred Line to slow songs, Michael Jackson to Rhianna - amazing!
We popped outside for a few minutes to catch the sunset over Lake Sebago...
...before heading back in for more dancing awesomeness
As the party carried on late into the night followed by fun around a campfire, guests chilled out on the porch with the toasty heaters:
Amy & John - how much fun was that!?!? Can you maybe renew your vows in October for a 5 month anniversary party? I'd like to photograph a wedding at Migis in the fall ;) You totally have to let me know when you're next up in Casco, ME and we can grab a Maine craft beer together! Thank you so much for choosing me as your wedding photographer and trusting me to document your day. Wishing you the most amazing life together!!! Congratulations!