Spring Lake Winery Wedding

Aly & Ross’s Wedding Photography at Spring Lake Winery by Varallo Vinyards

There are certain weddings that are so meticulously planned, there isn’t much space left to be present and let events transpire naturally. There are other weddings that are sheer chaos, but people are having an absolute blast and are completely rapt in the moment. Much to my surprise, this Spring Lake Winery wedding was both meticulously planned and enjoyed on a deep emotional level. THAT is the mark of a really great wedding for this photographer.

Wedding planner Daulton Van Kuren of The Refined Host did a truly amazing job organizing this day. When I first saw her beautiful rainbow colored timeline and all its glorious detail, I feared a bit for my creativity and the enjoyment of all involved. After reading it though, I discovered that it really disbursed events perfectly throughout the day and allowed everyone to really enjoy each and every part.

The timeline also featured a different structure than I was used to seeing at WNY weddings. The dancing, speeches, etc. were broken up and scattered throughout the celebration. It kept the energy high and guests engaged until the very last dance. This also meant the guests were all still present for a very special surprise at the end of the night that you’ll have to keep scrolling to see!

Preparation

I started this wedding day with Aly at her family home in Clarence, NY, a suburb of Buffalo. I just adore all the giggly excitement that shines through from Aly and her crew in these photos!

Aly’s dad was anxiously awaiting his daughters big reveal in the next room. When he came in to see Aly all dressed, he brought her this bouquet of roses. These two were so sweet!

I always love to see the difference between how each couple prepares for the wedding. While Aly and her bridesmaids elegantly posed for portraits, Ross and his groomsmen were posing in bathtubs, with axes, all sorts of… interesting… settings! I’m so very glad second shooter Steve was there to capture these groomsmen in all their glory. Some of these photos are just priceless!

groom poses with axe at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding

On to Spring Lake Winery for a beautiful outdoor wedding ceremony and reception! But first, the bride and grooms, “first look!”

“First looks” or “reveals” are such exciting and emotional moments in a wedding day. Couples get to have a private moment to be together and share in the excitement and anticipation of the day. First looks also tend to relieve stress and allow couples to just relax and enjoy extra time together on their wedding day.

Spring Lake Winery has many great spots for wedding photography. For mid-day photos when the sun is just blinding, I love these tall pine trees and all their glorious shade. This area photographs so beautifully and was the perfect spot for this emotional first look.

bride taps groom on shoulder during first look or "reveal" at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
groom sees bride for first time during first look or "reveal" at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
bride cries during first look or "reveal" at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
bride and groom smile for photographer at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
bride and groom pose for portraits at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
bride and groom pose for portrait at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
bride laughs with bridesmaids at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
bouquets being held by bridesmaids at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding

Photographing Aly and Ross with these giant balloons turned out to be quite a challenge! The balloons were constantly blowing in their faces and comedy ensued. Eventually we found the right angles though.

bride and groom pose for portraits with baloons at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
bride and groom pose for portraits with baloons at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
bride and groom pose for portraits with baloons at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding

As we wrapped our portrait session, the guests began to arrive for the ceremony on Spring Lake. The flower arrangements by Flourish and gorgeous music provided by String Brothers really set the tone for a sweet and elegant ceremony.

wedding decor inspiration from Flourish florist at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
String Brothers perform at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before WNY wedding
programs are passed out at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before wedding near Buffalo, NY
Guests cry at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before wedding near Buffalo, NY
father escorts bride down aisle at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before wedding near Buffalo, NY

These groomsmen were all smiles for Aly and Ross. It was so moving to glance around the area and feel all the love and support for this couple.

groomsmen smile as bride walks down aisle at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before wedding near Buffalo, NY
father and bride embrace after processional at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before wedding near Buffalo, NY
mother and grandfather smile at bride and father as they walk down aisle at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before wedding near Buffalo, NY
father and bride embrace and laugh after processional at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before wedding near Buffalo, NY
father shakes grooms hand after processional at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before wedding near Buffalo, NY

This photo below is one of my all time favorite processional photos. These three look at each other with so much love and admiration. Makes my heart swell three sizes!

father looks at bride after processional at Spring Lake Winery in Niagara County before wedding near Buffalo, NY
bride and groom laugh during wedding outdoor wedding ceremony at Spring Lake Winery in Lockport, NY
bride and groom recite vows during wedding outdoor wedding ceremony at Spring Lake Winery in Lockport, NY
bride cries while saying vows during wedding outdoor wedding ceremony at Spring Lake Winery in Lockport, NY
outdoor wedding ceremony at Spring Lake Winery in Lockport, NY
bride and groom exchange rings during wedding outdoor wedding ceremony at Spring Lake Winery in Lockport, NY
bride and groom smile at each other while exchanging vows during wedding outdoor wedding ceremony at Spring Lake Winery in Lockport, NY
bride and groom share first kiss during wedding outdoor wedding ceremony at Spring Lake Winery in Lockport, NY
bride and groom cheer while walking down aisle after wedding outdoor wedding ceremony at Spring Lake Winery in Lockport, NY

It’s official!

After the ceremony, the couples families gathered for a few family portraits. Unfortunately, Aly’s grandma passed shortly after their wedding. I’m SO, so grateful we got this beautiful portrait of Aly with her Grandma!!! (Also, when you’re done here, check out this years Mother’s Day post for more sweet mom and grandma moments!)

family portraits after wedding outdoor wedding ceremony at Spring Lake Winery in Lockport, NY

Meanwhile a gorgeous wedding reception was set for the guests in Spring Lake’s pavilion. White florals mixed with subtle blue accents, greenery and tea lights adorned every table. It was so cozy while feeling fresh and modern.

decor inspo during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY
decor inspo of pavillion during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY
decor inspo of centerpieces during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY
decor inspo of menu cards during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY
decor inspo during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY
decor inspo during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY

Wedding guests gathered outside the pavilion for cocktail hour complete with more live music from String Brothers.

outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY
string brothers perform during cocktail hourduring outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY
bride hugs guest during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY
guests pose for portraits during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY
bride poses for portrait with cousins during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery near Buffalo in WNY

Guests were invited to gather around the dance floor for the bride and groom’s adorable first dance. This was followed by the first dancing segment of the evening.

bride and groom are introduced to outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
bride and groom dance outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests take pictures of bride and groom during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
bride and groom dance outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance as train during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY

The wedding’s dancing segments were broken up with speeches and dinner courses. I had no idea dancing in short segments like this would help keep the party rolling so well!

grandfather deliver speech during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY

Aly’s Grandfather made the first toast and unfortunately called Ross by the wrong name. It was pretty funny. Aly’s parents followed next and fortunately got the names correct.

parents deliver speech during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY

After eating the first course, it was time for the formal parent dances with Aly’s dad and Ross’ mom and more group dancing!

guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY

Guests were seated again for the best man and maid of honor speeches followed by the main course.

maid of honor and best man deliver speeches during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY

The best man managed to acquire some love notes the couple had written and read them to the guests. It was hysterical!

Dessert was set outside in the cocktail area and WOW these donuts went at record speed. Paula’s Donuts are always a huge hit!

After cutting their cake the bride and groom made one last toast to their family and friends and thanked everyone for celebrating with them. With that, one last dance segment was underway!

guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests dance during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY
guests mingle during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY

One last surprise awaited the wedding guests outside the Spring Lake Winery pavilion – a gorgeous fireworks display over top a beautiful full moon!

bride and groom watch fireworks in front of full moon during outdoor wedding reception at Spring Lake Winery venue near Buffalo in WNY

Thank you!

Many thanks to Aly and Ross for having us document your day! And thank you to all these awesome venues and vendors who helped make the day so great!

Event Planner / Stylist: The Refined Host

Bride Preparation: Private Residence

Groom Preparation: Best Western (Lockport, NY location)

Ceremony: Spring Lake Winery

Portraits: Spring Lake Winery

Reception: Spring Lake Winery

Hair + Makeup: Pecoraro’s

Florist: Flourish

Strings: The String Brothers

Catering: Zambistro’s

DJ: CJ Sound

Fireworks: Skylighters Fireworks

Second Photographer: Steve Karosik

Senior Portrait Photographer in Buffalo, NY

I’ve been a senior portrait photographer in Buffalo, NY for many years, but this year will be extra special. With other events and weddings being cancelled or postponed left and right, I’ll be able to photograph even more senior portraits this year than ever before! I couldn’t be more excited!

Capturing all the excitement that comes with being a senior is so much fun. As a photographer, it’s important to me to capture not just what the seniors look like, but what it FEELS like to be around them during this fun, transitional time in their lives. I work with each senior before their session to learn a bit about their personality, their interests, etc. so that I can customize the backgrounds, posing, etc. to suit THEM. No two sessions are the same. I want to be sure each portrait session represents the seniors individual energy and spirit, no stale portraits here.

If this sounds like something you or someone you know may be interested in, please contact me!

Check out the sample gallery below from Zach’s senior portrait photography session near Buffalo, NY.

I photographed these first few images at Maple Grove High School. Football has been a huge part of Zach’s life so it was important to him to get a few shots at their home field.

senior picture of football player on field holding ball at Maple Grove high school during portrait session near Buffalo, NY
senior picture of football player on field holding ball at Maple Grove high school during portrait session near Buffalo, NY
senior portrait photographer lays on stomach in grass on football field near Buffalo, NY to get perfect angle for shot

By the way, this is what it took to get this angle with the school logo behind Zach. Thanks to Zach’s mom for capturing this ridiculous photographer moment!

senior picture of football player on bleachers at Maple Grove high school during portrait session near Buffalo, NY
senior picture of football player on bleachers holding ball at Maple Grove high school during portrait session near Buffalo, NY
senior football player standing with ball on football field at Maple Grove high school during portrait session near Buffalo, NY
senior football player standing with ball on football field at Maple Grove high school during portrait session near Buffalo, NY

Zach requested a photo in front of one of his friend and mentors jerseys in the lobby of Maple Grove High School. I thought this was such a sweet gesture and and amazing tribute to the players who came before him!

senior football player standing in front of jerseys in school at Maple Grove high school during portrait session near Buffalo, NY

From Maple Grove, we took a short drive to nearby Jamestown for a few additional portraits of Zach in a more urban setting. Jamestown has some really amazing old industrial photography locations right in the downtown area!

senior portrait of young man walking in front of brick wall in Jamestown during photography session
senior portrait of young man leaning on fence in front of brick wall in Jamestown during photography session
senior portrait of young man leaning on brick wall in Jamestown during photography session

Thanks for being such a fun senior to work with Zach, and best of luck at North Park University next fall! Go Vikings!

If you would like to see more senior portrait fun from a Maple Grove student, check out this gallery from Zach’s sister Allison’s senior portrait session a couple years back! Her session was completely different from Zach’s (think microphones and guitars instead of footballs) but just as much fun.

And as always, if you know anyone looking for a senior portrait photographer in the Buffalo, NY area, please reach out!