Thursday, August 7, 2008
Rhea-Strickland vows said in March 29 ceremony
Historic First United Methodist Church was the setting March 29, 2008 for the worship service celebrating the marriage of Miss Cameron Lamar Strickland and Mr. Jason Delane Rhea. The couple’s parents are Mr. and Mrs. Wesley Rondle Strickland Jr. of Holly Springs, Mr. and Mrs. Van Malone of Ripley and Mr. and Mrs. Odis Eugene Rhea of Michigan City.
The seven o’clock candlelight service was preceded with organ selections by Charles Lee Bell Jr. of Memphis, who is the church’s organist. Large arrangements of white flowers and cathedral candlesticks completed the candlelight service. The flowers in the sanctuary were given to the glory of God and in honor of the couple’s grandmothers and the bride’s godparents, Mrs. Billie Rhea King of Inverness and Mr. Danny Morris Valentine of Ashland.
At the appointed time, Mr. Bell chimed the hour. The organ chimes were donated to the church by the late Mrs. Fred M. Belk Sr. in memory of her husband. Mrs. Jonathan Andrew Burch, soloist, sang “Surely the Presence” as the crucifer. Erin Lesley Lomenick led the processional followed by the seating of the family, the couple’s parents and their grandmothers, Mrs. James Michael Haffey of Mt. Pleasant, Mrs. Wesley Rondle Strickland Sr. of Southaven, formerly of Holly Springs, and the Honorable Annie Mae Wilson of Carrollton.
Special seating also included places for the bride’s proxy, Cathryn Miller Douglas of Starkville and the reception tea girls, the Misses Anna Katherine Adair, Emma Elizabeth Elgin, Lauralee Elizabeth Fant, Kelsey Campbell Farese, Ellen Parrish Gresham, Sarah Nicole Holloway, Nealy Kate Jones, Erika Regan Murphy and Traci Michelle Rodgers.
Mrs. Malone chose for her son’s wedding a chocolate Cachet two-piece dress with a charmeuse ball skirt. The heavily beaded, jewel-trimmed flyaway jacket completed the ensemble. She wore a white cymbidium orchid.
The mother of the bride wore a Dupione silk gown designed by Jade Fashion of Chicago. The platinum-colored, two-piece ensemble featured a lovely sweetheart roushed bustline. The fitted bodice was enhanced with metallic appliqués and flowed into an A-line skirt. A striking roushed bolero jacket added a classic finishing touch to the two-piece ensemble. Mrs. Strickland carried a platinum silk dinner bag with metallic appliqués that coordinated with those on her dress. Her white cymbidium orchid was attached to the bag.
William Wage of Little Rock, Ark., formerly of Holly Springs, sang “Holy Ground.” The wedding attendants entered the sanctuary to “Canon in D” and were directed by Mrs. Hugh Tate of New Albany. Serving the bride as maid of honor was Miss Anna Mather Greer of Tupelo. Bridesmaids were Laura Carlisle Bray of Collierville, Margaret Rather Brown of Jackson, Rebecca Paige Gholson of Collierville, Tenn., Erika Grissom Shoffner of Red Banks, Angie Tate Vanzant of Potts Camp and Carole Lee Webb of Nashville.
The bridesmaids were stunning in aquamarine, strapless, satin gowns that featured an elegant pick-up skirt. The gowns were designed by Mori Lee Bridal of New York and included a Tiffany blue sash and shawl. Their bouquets were designed by the bride’s mother and were of bright pink peonies, roses and tulips. During the rehearsal each of the bridesmaids carried Cambridge Garden, hand-tied botanical bouquets, a keepsake from the bride.
Attending Mr. Rhea as best man was his brother, Brian Wayne Langston of Red Banks. Serving as groomsmen for Mr. Rhea were Michael Dustin Allen of Slayden, Timothy Wayne Edwards of Mt. Pleasant, Bradley Neal Hunsucker of Lafayette, La., Richard Brewer Loftin Jr. of Mt. Pleasant, Jeffrey David McAlexander of Holly Springs, Joseph Brett Shoffner of Red Banks and John W. Taylor III of Holly Springs. Brian Wayne Langston Jr. of Red Banks served his uncle as junior groomsman.
Serving the couple as ushers were Elton Garry Bray of Mt. Pleasant, Jason Bowie Burch of Southaven, Ellis Townsend Stubbs of Olive Branch, Boyce Hunter Crawford of Slayden and Robert Kenneth Dickerson of Oxford.
Prior to the entrance of the bride, little friends of the couple entered the sanctuary from both aisles and stood in the chancel with the ministers, the Rev. Milton Boyd of Holly Springs and the Rev. Doyle Mitchell of Ethel and with the crucifer, Miss Lomenick. Wearing hand-made halos of baby’s breath and watching on as the couple exchanged their marriage vows were Amanda Frances Barnett, Makayla Lane Edwards, Mary Neeley Jones, Anna Mathis Larson, Katharine Claire Leak, Morgan Bailey Loftin, Emily Kate McAlexander, Kaylee Ashton Patterson, Parker Olivia Stephenson and Peyton Conner Stephenson.
Lindsey Kate Potts and Laken Alexis Vanzant carried a garland of fresh greens accented with gypsophila and ribbons that were embellished with pearls matching the ribbons in the handmade halos.
Master Waylon Andrew Langston served as ring bearer. Little Miss Molly Grace Burch served the couple as flower girl. She wore a French dress which was monogrammed with her initials on the heirloom collar. She also wore one of the pearl-accented halos and carried a satin-covered basket to match the bride’s attire, which was filled with rose petals that coordinated with roses in the bridesmaids’ bouquets.
The bride entered the sanctuary on the arm of her father as the organist played “Trumpet Voluntary.” Her gown, a design by Casablanca Bridal of New York, featured a stunning strapless neckline and a fitted bodice elaborately embroidered with platinum metallic thread and exquisitely detailed with pearls and crystals. The elongated waistline elegantly flowed into an A-line skirt. A classic row of fabric-covered buttons on the back streamed to an amazing semi-cathedral-length train with matching embroidery. The bride chose to complete her classic bridal image with a crystal tiara adorned by a long veil delicately trimmed with platinum embroidery that gently cascaded over her shoulders.
Her bouquet, also designed by her mother, was made of white flowers including Casa Blanca lilies, hydrangeas, roses, tulips and peonies. Nestled in the hand-tied bouquet was the bride’s “something old,” a handkerchief given to the bride by Mrs. Fred Work, when she was born, as a bonnet. Accenting the tiny square of linen was her “something borrowed,” two beauty pins and a pink cameo belonging to her maid of honor. The beauty pins were worn by Miss Greer as a child and the cameo was given to her by her great-great-uncle, the late D. Wright Greer of Potts Camp.
Mrs. Burch joined Mr. Wage in a beautiful duet rendition of “Seek Ye First” once the bride and her father reached the alter. Mrs. Brandon Leak read selections from Proverbs and Corinthians. After the vows were exchanged, Mrs. Burch sang “How Beautiful” with Mr. Bell at the piano. Master Jacob Kizer Jones rang the church’s bell as the couple and their wedding party recessed to the “Wedding March.”
Assisting at the church and at Montrose the afternoon of the wedding was Mrs. Martha Jane Jones, Mrs. Johnny LaFever, Mrs. Johnny Taylor Jr., Mrs. Bobby McAlexander, Mrs. Steve Elgin and Miss Sara Power.
William F. Schneller drove the bride, groom and their maid of honor in his antique convertible Buick LaSabre that had been decorated with white tulle, wreaths and bows by Denise Gholson, to the reception which was held at antebellum Montrose. A magnolia wreath hanging from the balcony, a cascade of wedding flowers and a beautifully framed invitation, a gift to the couple by Mr. and Mrs. Danny Simpson of Ashland and the Keith Larsons of Oxford, greeted the wedding party and the guests. Mr. and Mrs. Oliver Manning Burch IV received. Truly a Southern occasion, magnificent flower arrangements created by Mrs. Tate, wedding coordinator and the staff of Jennie’s Flowers & Gifts filled the historical home and garden.
The three-tiered wedding cake was adorned with fresh white roses and offered the guests a variety of flavors. The fourth layer was placed on a beveled mirror and topped with an antique porcelain bride and groom that also adorned the bride’s maternal grandparents’ Mr. and Mrs. James Frank Wilson’s wedding cake, 65 years ago. The cake knife used to cut the bride’s cake was the same knife used by the bride’s parents at their wedding reception. The bride placed her bouquet in a lead crystal, intricately cut vase, a wedding present from the Hugh Tate family.
The groom’s room was in the morning room of the home. The hunter’s theme, used for the rehearsal dinner, was carried over. Exquisite arrangements used the eve of the wedding decorated this room. The table was overlaid with khaki and burlap to carry out the hunter’s theme and held the groom’s favorite dessert, cheesecake and a variety of toppings.
The lavish buffet, which held the couple’s favorites, was located in the double parlors of the home and offered the guests the finest of cuisine from Gourmet to Go. A silver six-foot trumpet vase holding wedding flowers centered the food tables. The pier mirror was accented with wedding flowers that were also in trumpet vases suspended at different levels from the antique mirror with satin ribbon.
The beautiful grounds of Montrose were lighted for the evening in loving memory of Mrs. Simpson Hurdle of Slayden by Mr. and Mrs. Billy Cupp, Mr. and Mrs. Harold Murphy and Mr. and Mrs. Tommy Rodgers.
Guests sat at tables that were dressed in white and overlaid with platinum sheer skirts. Centering the tables were black wrought iron candelabrums that held spring flower arrangements and stunning embellishments of aqua-marine illusion. Cocktail tables in the back garden were flanked with cubes holding the same spring flowers as that of the wrought iron arrangements and placed on mirrors. Rockin’ Robbin of Memphis provided lively musical entertainment for the evening. The couple danced their first dance to “When God Made You.”
Other hosts and hostesses for the evening were Mr. and Mrs. Gary Walker Barnett, Mr. and Mrs. Garry Wayne Bray, Mr. and Mrs. Edwin Warwick Callicutt Jr., Mr. and Mrs. Robert Preston McAlexander, Mr. and Mrs. John David Strickland, Mr. and Mrs. James William Warren Jr. and Mr. and Mrs. William Frederick Schneller.
Guests were given personalized match books, personalized huggies that were of the hunter’s theme and were also honored with a memorial gift given in their honor and that of the wedding party to the Rob Warren Scholarship for Legal Studies at the University of Mississippi.
At the culmination of the evening, guests gathered handfuls of birdseed from Paul Revere bowls, provided by Margaret Brown, to shower the bride and groom as they departed by limousine to Bonne Terre’.
On the eve of the wedding, the wedding party, family and a host of guests gathered at Trevecca Manor to honor the couple. The Manor, located in Red Banks, is a wedding chapel and is owned by the groom’s aunt and uncle, Mr. and Mrs. Aubrey Floyd. Mr. and Mrs. Floyd joined the groom’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Van Malone, in receiving the guests.
Trevecca was transformed into a sportsmen’s paradise. The center of the spacious dining room featured a tree holding a deer stand. Each table was overlaid with khaki and burlap, centered with elaborate flower arrangements and antler-shaped votives. Beverage glasses were embossed with the couple’s initial and their wedding date.
The guests were treated to a feast of all the groom’s favorite foods and were served from a buffet that was designed in the shape of a boat. The dessert station was filled with the groom’s favorite, all types of cheesecakes and toppings.
A video of the couple from infancy to courtship highlighted favorite memories of the bride and groom growing up with many of the guests in attendance at the dinner. The bridesmaids performed a skit highlighting their take on the way the courtship began. It truly was a night of good cheer.
The couple is at home in Mt. Pleasant.
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