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Tennessee, A Great Smokey Mountains Wedding and Some Bears

Updated: Sep 30, 2022

We were invited to Tennessee to the Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg area to film this quaint little destination wedding and it was as beautiful as it was intimate and majestic. The Great Smokey Mountains did not disappoint.

Thank you again to Annie and Scott for having us out. I have actually known Annie for over a decade. I have been friends with her older brother Jeff for years and years, and it was such a pleasure to share this special day with their families. Because I was shooting the wedding of a family friend, I decided to mix a little business with pleasure for this particular trip. I brought my little family along for the ride and we spent an extra few days exploring the Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg area. We were traveling with our 4 year old (at the time) son. We had heard that bears run around like squirrels in the midwest... lol, so #4 was excited to see some bears. The full first day into the next morning he watched and anxiously waited. I remember the first morning, he went out on the balcony and wanted to know where the bears were. Well, later that day we would see some bears very unexpectedly. We were headed outside to explore the area a bit. (we were staying at an Air BnB in the mountains) It was an apartment complex with a bunch of buildings and an indoor pool on the side of a mountain. It was pretty legit. So we were headed out to see the surrounding area. (we being me my son and his mother) I had my drone in hand and was in front of the two of them by about a cars length, outside in the parking lot, and we were about to go around the corner of the building; and then 3 bears emerged from behind a bush and walked past us. They were 40 - 50 feet away from us maybe. There were people up on a balcony looking down and watching in the same amazement as us. Only, our amazement was clouded by a bit of shear terror as the mother bear turned and looked directly at us.

We didn't know if we should run, hide, or take out our phones and take a picture. It was magical and majestic and scary and exciting all at the same time and I am so thankful I got to share the experience with my little family. We would go on to have 2-3 more bear sitings on our trip. Each time just as magical and breathtaking as the last. Maybe it is because I have grown up in the MidWest for the most part. But there was something crazy and majestic and beautiful about seeing wild bears in real life. Besides the amazing wedding and besides all of the fun touristy stuff we got to do, seeing bears in the wild, running around like squirrels was incredible...!!! Thank you again to Annie and Scottie for allowing us the privilege...!! It truly was an honor to celebrate your day together...!!!

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Special thanks to Andrew Korte & 364 Productions

Venue: Wedding Bell Chapel

Hair and Makeup: Southern Strandz Salon Thank you..!!!

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