Kathryn Wilcox Hughes & Joseph John Walach
Hometowns: Williamsville, NY & Cumberland, RI
How you met. Our wedding was unique. Joe and I are both military and actually met at work. We became great work friends but it always felt like I knew him before I met him—that “I know you from somewhere” feeling. We talked through where we had been deployed and stationed but nothing every really crossed. We came close in Kuwait in 2003, but nope. I never felt truly comfortable in my own skin, I tried to cover up but he saw something beautiful and helped break away the shell I was hiding in and eventually we knew we were meant to be together, from the first kiss that was absolutely perfect to the moment he told me he loved me and had always loved me to the proposal.
How did he propose? On the morning of August 14, 2015, Joe proposed to me on the pool deck at The St. Anthony Hotel. I had no idea, I seriously thought he was going to push me into the water but it was perfect. I can’t imagine not having him in my life. We are very thankful for each other.
The planning. We had both been married before—he had a formal ceremony and I had a courthouse wedding. We wanted to do something fun and neither of us were fans of a sit-down reception, so we decided to do a cocktail hour-type wedding. We love The St. Anthony and being downtown in San Antonio so we knew we had to have our wedding there and Sara Wilson was more than willing to help. We also really wanted to have our wedding poolside because of the significance with the proposal and Sara said of course! Poolside in August we knew it had to be in the evening so we picked a Friday evening: 8/12/16, all numbers divisible by 4, Joe’s favorite number. I first found our photographer Ann and started asking her for suggestions on cakes to florals and she highly recommended Angie from Evember. Once I met Angie I knew she was perfect. Our wish was for flowers that brought in the colors of a summer evening sunset. Angie loved that and was also able to bring in little bits of gold to bring in the historic charm and elegance of The St. Anthony. Our three-tiered, ivory buttercream cake with glitter gold layers was also decorated with fresh flowers.
The day of. With family and friends traveling from all over the United States to celebrate with us, we really just wanted to celebrate our love and have fun. We had a simple but beautiful ceremony officiated by a very good friend and co-worker, a fantastic string quartet, and wonderful food created by The St. Anthony's Chef Michael Mata. The icing on the cake, if you will, was for our beer fans—we served Alamo Beer Company (Joe’s favorite).
The service at The St. Anthony was top notch. The chef and his team did an amazing job with the food, our guests had nothing but compliments. I never had any doubts but all I can say is that everything was fantastic. The entire day was everything we could have dreamed of—it all came together, there was no stress (surprisingly), and everyone had an awesome time celebrating with us. All of our vendors (people who are now our friends) put in a lot of work, especially those who were able create a food menu and cake that I can eat (gluten-free allergies are never easy when it comes to food!). I am just as thankful to them for coming together and helping make our day as perfect as could be.
What are your favorite memories from the day? My favorite memory from the day was taking a quick-dip photo in the middle of Travis Street with oncoming traffic—it made for an amazing photo with a "green light" in the background. One other was walking out onto the pool deck with my brother and father on either side of me and looking down the aisle at my husband-to-be. It was priceless, especially with the string quartet and the sounds of downtown in the background.
Any advice for couples planning a San Antonio wedding? Think out of the box! You don't have to have a "typical" wedding. We wanted a wedding that reflected us, that we would enjoy and everyone else would also. So we chose a cocktail party with a short and sweet ceremony and our friends and family have remarked that ours was the best wedding they had ever attended (it makes my heart smile). Of course, having an open bar for six hours, amazing food, and friends and family that all partied together made the evening one to never forget! Everyone who attended had a reason for being there, which made it much more special. We didn't invite hundreds of people. Make your day about the two of you. Pick a place you absolutely love, not just any reception hall. It could be a pool deck, a bar, a park—anywhere! San Antonio has so many beautiful places and wonderful vendors who can make your dreams come true.
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