Sunday, September 24, 2023 Sep 24, 2023
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Love in the Time of COVID: A Wedding Story

Lauren and Andy decided to get married before the lockdown
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Last Monday, before the lockdown, I stopped by Billy Can Can to pick up dinner after a shoot. (I’m the staff photographer for D Magazine.) I met Lauren and Andy while I was there. They were the last people to pick up to-go dinners from the restaurant. It wasn’t just any dinner. It was their wedding dinner. They canceled their wedding in North Carolina and married at Lakeside Park. Talking to them, you would never have known what they’d just gone through. The happy couple could not have been happier.

Here’s what Andy Moore told me via email after I took his picture:

When we got the news on Sunday that the shelter-at-home order would go into effect on Monday night, Lauren reached out to Just Elope to see if they could make a last-minute ceremony happen on Monday afternoon. Luckily, they were flexible, and we set up a live-stream link so family and friends could watch.

As it’s been a hectic and strange couple of weeks for anyone in the food biz, we actually both worked remotely Monday morning — Lauren for Frito-Lay, and me for Hwy 55, a restaurant chain that’s expanding into the area. We shut work down around lunchtime, and Lauren picked up flowers and a cake, while I ran off on a last-minute errand to pick up my ring, which was being resized.

We held the ceremony at 4 p.m. in Lakeside Park, a special spot for us, as we got engaged there last year. The officiant, Jennifer Allen, a photographer and videographer, met us at the park. We brought along our Yorkie, Milly, who served admirably as a bridesmaid. The ceremony was quick but special, and it was great to have it on a live stream so we could later see our friends’ comments as they rolled in.

Then we came back to the apartment, Facetimed our families, and drove off to Billy Can Can to pick up our reception meal. (Which was delicious.)

While Monday was a definite pivot from our original wedding plans, we’re really happy we got married, and we’re truly grateful for everyone who helped make it happen. It was a special day.

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