Megan and Cory encountered nothing but obstacles on their journey to tie the knot. First, there was the COVID-19 pandemic which forced them to cut their guest list way down and find a new venue. Then just days before their “I Do’s” California burst into flames flooding their second venues once stunning view with nothing but smoke. A third ceremony location was stumbled upon in the form of a stunning little meadow just a short walk from the reception venue.
The groom, Cory put in a beautiful path and crafted a custom pine arch and it seemed as if they had finally conquered all the obstacles standing in their way. The morning of their wedding everyone was bursting with excitement and the bridesmaids had just got their hair and make-up done and it was finally the bride Megan’s turn and, you guessed it, the power goes out. They hopped into the car and were able to find a location with power to finish Megan’s hair and makeup and she was still ready to go with time to spare.
Despite all of the curveballs and countless obstacles, these two encountered on their journey down the aisle they just kept rolling with the punches. They weren’t going to let a single thing stop them from becoming husband and wife. I’m still in awe of how calm and collective they kept in handling all the crazy, stress-inducing changes as they did. In the end, they had an absolutely perfect little wedding and it was such an honor to be a part of. Congratulations to Mr. & Mrs. Sciotto!
How did you meet?
For both Megan and Cory, Arnold, CA, a quaint mountain town in the middle of the beautiful CA Sierra redwoods has always been “home.” Cory was raised by his grandparents up in Arnold, 30 minutes from the ski mountain Bear Valley and 5 minutes from Sequoia Woods golf course. He grew up working at both the golf course and the ski mountain, perfecting both golf and skiing at a young age. Megan and her family bought a cabin in Arnold around the age of 14. Growing up three brothers, Megan was a bit of a tomboy and held her own amongst the boys on the ski mountain and golf course. Cory and Megan’s brothers caught eye of each other’s love for adrenaline while doing crazy flips off the country club’s diving board and became instant friends. Megan, being a few years older than Cory, got the title “the older sister” and at that age was “off limits.” Time went by and Cory and Megan went their different paths – Cory became a firefighter locally and Megan went off to college down south, traveling a lot. Time made them both grow up into adults. In 2019, a mutual family friend (both who Megan and Cory consider family) was getting married and both Megan and Cory attended the wedding. “Who was this charming, attractive young man?!” Megan thought. They immediately hit it off, feeling the comfort of the past but also feeling these new romantic sparks. They were inseparable then on, making the long-distance between Arnold (Cory) and Walnut Creek (Megan) work, until moving in with each other, getting a Bernese Mountain Dog (wedding ring “bear”er), and finally moving back up to the mountains where both their hearts and love story began.
What is your proposal story?
Since Cory and Megan had known each other since they were little, Cory was already considered family and their relationship progressed fairly fast. After an intense fire season, Cory was fortunate to come home on Christmas Day and he knew he wanted to ask Megan’s dad for her hand in marriage as soon as possible. After getting the approval, Cory knew Megan really needed take a vacation from work, so he planned a trip to Hawaii in January for the both of them to get away (and propose). The day of the trip came and Megan got very sick (little did we know then that she got COVID), but she was determined to make it to Hawaii. She bought a mask from the drug store on the way to the airport to cover her cough on the plane (not knowing how important masks would be within a few weeks time). After a few tears and some heavy breathing, they made it to Maui. Cory felt horrible that she felt this bad, thinking this may not be the best time to propose. The next morning they got in a Jeep and started out on The Road to Hana, kleenex in hand, hoping Megan would feel better out in the beautiful waterfall scenery. Cory was determined to propose at one of the many waterfalls along the way. Frustratingly (yet now it’s hilarious), Cory struck bad luck with his attempts to propose as bad luck seem to hit at each waterfall they attempted. First it was a mudslide and Megan fell in the mud, then a bunch of tourists decided to skinny dip at another, to others being closed. Cory was feeling nervous until the sign said “rare black sand beach ahead” – Cory raced Megan down to the beach and it ended up being the most romantic setting. After a day of feeling so run-down, it felt like the clouds parted and the sunshine beamed down on them, feeling bliss and excitement for the rest of the trip and the rest of their lives.
Tell us a little a bit about your wedding.
Our wedding planning experience encompassed everything a COVID wedding would – rescheduling multiple times, back-and-forth on whether to have it or not, changing venues 3+ times, uncertainty on guest attendance, vendors, and last minute changes… a whirlwind of emotions! But, the both of us both find strength in our ability to roll with the punches, keep positive, and find humor when things get tough… so I’m actually very proud at how we handled everything and our day actually ended up being more “us” than the original. We originally were going to be at a golf course with a large guest list with all the bells and whistles. It ended up, due to COVID and CA fires, being in a beautiful meadow down the street from where Cory and Megan met. This was obviously a last minute decision which just made it more personal and intimate. Cory spent the whole day before the wedding creating this beautiful pathway through the meadow, lined with pinecones he collected. He created an circular arbor for the ceremony out of branches and greenery he found around Megan’s families cabin. The morning of the wedding, a mama and two baby dear visited the ceremony site. It was dreamy from the beginning. Megan always loved nature and the natural earthy tones, so the reception (on the property of Cory’s childhood home walking distance from the meadow) included silver dollar eucalyptus, pinecones, rustic wooden accents, an old canoe for the refreshments, and rustic overhanging strands of lights. Cory’s grandpa used to work on an old truck with Cory growing up and let Megan and her dad drive it down the dirt road when it was time for her to come down the aisle. The whole day was perfectly them – intimate, outdoors, rustic romantic, and with their closest family and friends.
Tell us about your attire choices.
Megan’s dress came from a little bridal store (The Bridal Loft) in Sonora, another mountain town close to Arnold. The dress showed off Megan’s curves in an elegant way and the lace detail fit the mountain meadow theme perfectly. The bridesmaids wore floor-length flowy cranberry dresses. The groomsmen wore suspenders to fit the “mountain man” meadow theme. Cory wore a 3-piece gray suit with suspenders for a more formal, romantic feel for the groom.
What was the most important to the two of you while planning? Was there anything that you chose to splurge on or skip?
The most important thing to us during planning was to remember the day is about celebrating our love, so especially through the chaos of COVID, if anything went off course or there were hiccups, to not let it get to you. I think our wedding experience made us realize that you can create a magical experience out of anywhere. We took a meadow and our grandparents’ driveway in the woods and made it an intimate, romantic, fun experience we and our guests will never forget. And, the “venue” was more us than our original. Advice to anyone planning their wedding: when choosing a venue, think about what’s really important to you; you can be creative!
What were your favorite parts of the day?
We loved incorporating Cory’s grandpa’s truck into our day. Megan’s dad driving her down the dirt road into the meadow where Cory stood amongst our special group of family and friends was like out of a Nicholas Sparks’ movie! And, the pictures we have, taken by the talented Tiffany Longeway, in and in front of the truck are so special. We also love that the ceremony pieces were all created by Cory, which just makes it more special.
Tell us about your wedding flowers.
The girls had a different spin on bouquets – they were flowers on a large ring they placed their arm through. Megan has always liked being different and this yelled out different but elegant. And, Megan’s bouquet, the girls’ ring bouquets, and the boys’ boutonnieres were all fake flowers from an amazing Etsy vendor, which kept their beauty throughout the day (one less thing to think of through all the COVID chaos) and no one knew they were fake! Megan chose earthy toned flowers that would grow around the CA sierras to tie in the location.
Tell us about your wedding cake.
Our wedding cake was made by a local pastry chef, as well as the cupcakes! She is a friend of the family and kept the simple rustic romantic theme.
What did you do for favors?
We got everyone a wooden handle duo wine/beer opener with our names and date on them.
Please describe any DIY, handmade, or personal details.
As mentioned, Cory made the meadow walkway and arbor for the ceremony. We also used an old canoe for the beer/wine/refreshments. Megan created all the signs around the reception with chalk paint and picture frames. Megan also created the table settings, runners, and decor by putting together things found on etsy, live foliage from the location, and Amazon. Megan’s sister-in-law also created the wine labels for the wine bottles (she’s a marketing director for Gallo wine) which had a moose for our Benere Mountain Dog, Moose, and our names/wedding date.
Did you include any family heirlooms or special traditions?
My mom sowed in a piece of my great-great-great grandma’s dress into mine. I used a handkerchief that was an heirloom of Cory’s families. The truck was Cory’s grandpa (dad)’s.
Do you have any advice for couples planning their weddings now?
Think about what is really important to you and surround your ideas, planning, location, details, etc around that. Be creative – you can create a magical day from the ground up without breaking the bank. Photography was important to us – those are the pictures you’ll have forever to remember your special day. Keep your patience and find time to go on dates, enjoy 1:1 time with your fiance during the planning process. It can get stressful, but those little moments to ground yourselves again helps!
What’s your biggest piece of advice for other couples planning a mountain wedding?
The mountains are “home” to us. We grew up in them. Our families live in them. All our favorite activities and memories are in the mountains. The mountains give off a calming, refreshing vibe that makes the whole day feel at peace and surrounded by true beauty. We would tell others to embrace the beauty of the natural beauty. You don’t need much more when you have an amazing mountainous setting for your ceremony! Let the mountains do their magic :)
The below wedding pros made this amazing event happen. See more of their work by visiting their website.