September 13, 2019
Carter and Richard saw each other for the first time while competing against one another at an ice dancing competition. They were sharing the practice ice, and couldn’t help noticing one another. It wasn’t until a year and a half later that they really met, when they tried each other out as ice dancing partners. And this weekend, they’re getting married! But wait, there’s a little more to this story, including the sweetest proposal and a stunning LBI Lighthouse engagement photoshoot at Ol’Barney.
First, I have to say… I am not an ice dancer. I can’t ice skate and I have no dance moves. None. And when I first began planning with them, they didn’t even mention that they were professional ice dancers. During our second meeting, I mentioned giving them my guest list template and explained that they shouldn’t worry, just to let me know if they had any trouble with the format. I think I said, ” No one gets it right the first time around.” Carter’s father just smiled, and casually mentioned I should expect it right the first time, because these two are Olympic athletes and will take it as a challenge. I laughed, and on the way home, it sunk in. The next time we were planning, Carter sent me this link to the two of them skating. Eventually I asked Carter to explain to me exactly what ice dancing was and how it was different from other types of figure skating. She must get asked this a lot, because her answer was perfect: Ice dancing is a branch of figure skating. There are three branches; freestyle, pairs, and ice dancing. All ice dancing is couples. There’s no jumping or throwing. It’s like ballroom dancing on ice.
These two met for the second time, when Carter was looking for an ice dancing partner. She was on a website called Ice Partner Search (it’s like Match.com for skaters). At the same time, so was Richard. It has never occurred to me that skating partners would have to try each other out, but it makes total sense when you think about it! And it is a LOT like dating, right!?! You have to find THE person you want to spend an enormous amount of time with AND you have to have the same values and goals. Otherwise, it might not work. Carter was either going to find a new skating partner, or go to college. When Richard asked her to be his partner, she decided to defer college and continue competing. By the time they began dating, about a year into their skating partnership, they were already best friends.
Carter and her family have spent a lot of time on Long Beach Island. Growing up, Carter (much like me) spent summers hanging out on the Barnegat Bay. Her grandparents had a small LBI bungalow in Harvey Cedars that has been in her fmaily for four generations! Richard grew up in England, and learned to love LBI while dating Carter. Richard knew that the dock overlooking the bay was a special place, so while on LBI for a day-trip with family and friends, he came up with a plan to pop the question. One of Carter’s friends (she was in on it) went out on the dock at sunset to take a picture, Carter went to join her, and Richard went as the photographer. Carter’s friend asked if she wanted a photo with Richard. She did. Richard handed their friend the camera, and said he had a great poses to try. With that, he dropped to one knee, and asked Carter to marry him!
I can imagine how special that dock is. To Carter and Richard. To their families. And, to generations to come.
This weekend, Carter and Richard will celebrate their marriage at Brant Beach Yacht Club facing Barnegat Bay. I hope their day is full of love, family, and a beautiful sunset. But what I know for sure, is this: They have put together an amazing team of wedding professionals. And we are going to have a blast! In the meantime, enjoy these stunning engagement photos from Idalia Photography!
If you are looking to plan an LBI Lighthouse Engagement Photoshoot, check out my blog on the best locations on LBI to do an engagement photoshoot.
Thank you to the photographers who allow us to use their images on our site:
Ashley Mac Photographs, Heather Palecek Photography, Idalia Photography, Jessica Erb Photography, Susan Elizabeth Photography, Delaney Dobson Photography, Ann Coen Photography & Melanie Cassie Photography
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