Family and friends gathered May 2, 2015 on the bluff in Fairhope, Alabama to celebrate the marriage of Lauren Frances Mininger and James Bradshaw Rhodes. Dr. Ted Mashburn officiated the ceremony. The bride is the daughter of Ms. Patricia Avinger Mininger. The groom is the son of Mr. and Mrs. John Frederick Rhodes, Sr.
Given in marriage by her grandfather, Mr. Curtis James Avinger, the bride wore an elegant lace gown featuring a V-shaped neckline with cap sleeves, delicate beading and a keyhole detail on the back. Her veil had a scalloped Alencon lace edge.
The bride carried a bouquet created by The Rose Bud and filled with white hydrangeas, cymbidium orchids, gardenias and ivory and white roses. Something old and something blue were incorporated into her bouquet with lace from her mother’s wedding gown and an antique brooch from her late grandmother, Mrs. Sabine Frances Avinger. Melissa Galdis and Mary Rodgers were chosen by the bride as maids of honor. Kristina Coffman, Mary Caron Downing, Mary Rose Downing, Rebecca Downing and Brittany Rose served as bridesmaids. Sabine Downing served as flower girl. Bridesmaids wore tea length, pistachio green dresses that were accented by bouquets of blue and green hydrangeas, green roses and blue delphinium.
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The groom chose his father, John Frederick Rhodes, Sr. and brother, John Rhodes, Jr. as his best men. Regan Downing, Joseph Erdmann, Scott Nelson and Joseph Rhodes, Jr. served as groomsmen.
Gorgeous weather and a picturesque view provided the perfect setting for the groom to surprise the bride prior to the ceremony by playing the guitar and singing the couple’s favorite song, “Up All Night” by Widespread Panic.
The bride was escorted to the ceremony by her brothers, Eric Mininger and Ryan Mininger before joining her grandfather, who walked her down an aisle lined with hydrangeas to a flower-covered arbor overlooking Mobile Bay. Harpist Mahlon McCracken played a medley of traditional wedding songs selected by the couple.
The reception immediately followed at Emma’s Bay House. The decor featured tables draped in elegant champagne linens topped with vases of lush flowers, delicate lanterns, soft candles and framed photos of the couple. Guests dined on Southern favorites prepared by Naman’s Catering while enjoying a breathtaking sunset.
Under a canopy of Italian lights and a starry sky, guests danced to music provided by Mike Barnes. The couple chose “Little Wing” for their first dance. “Stars Fell on Alabama” was selected for special dances shared with the bride and her grandfather and the groom and his mother. The newlyweds left the reception on the tailgate of a 1946 Chevy truck. Irwin Funes Photography perfectly captured all the events of the day. The bride and groom’s vision for their special day was carried out by wedding coordinator Jessica Deese.
In October 2015, the bride’s grandfather, Mr. Curtis James Avinger passed away unexpectedly at the age of 93. His dream of walking his “little girl” down the aisle was fulfilled.
After honeymooning in the Pacific Northwest, the couple now resides in Mobile with their rescue husky mix, Dottie.
Photos by Irwin Funes