Ultra unique wedding for us! First off the groom is my dad! They also had an intimate destination wedding in Yellowknife, North West Territories including the Northern Lights / Aurora Borealis!
Wedding Photos under the Northern Lights
The obvious first thought when getting married in Yellowknife is get some epic northern lights wedding photos under the stars! We had the plan to go out the first night at 12am at this beautiful little park just out of town and have a big fire to stay warm and catch the lights. It ended up being of the most frustrating days of photography in my entire life! And we have done 1000’s of photo shoots. Every time we set up a shot, the aurora would change locations, the super moon was too bright, and tourists were pouring into the park one after another with their car lights shining every 2 seconds. It was not ideal, so we decided to pack it in and hopefully try it again another night.
Second attempt at the Aurora Borealis
After the first failed attempt, word on the street was an epic solar storm was brewing over the next few days! We knew it had to be a better attempt then the first time. There was more time to check a few more areas out to really find the perfect spot. We grabbed all the firewood and headed out! Second night did not disappoint! You could see vibrant green and red hues dance across the sky no problem with the naked eye. The camera picked up the hues of the Aurora with extra clarity! We grabbed my dad and Liz away from the warmth of the fire and pretty much got our favourite photo under the Aurora Borealis first attempt! We of course did a few selfies for ourselves.
The wedding day
Yellowknife had record breaking warm days all week. Which was good for us Vancouver weaklings that are used to a more temporal climate. The warm weather unfortunately changed a lot of the plans since half of Yellowknife was melting, including the epic snow castle we had planned on using! The wedding day temperature dropped back down under freezing (-11) and sunny, which was still warm for Yellowknife!
Wedding ceremony in the Yellowknife Legislative Assembly
Liz’s son works at the Yellowknife Legislative Assembly (the reason he lives up there, and part of the reason why the wedding was in Yellowknife). The wedding ceremony took place in front of the massive floor to ceiling windows overlooking the forest. There was a lot of great emotions, and the only time I have seen my dad (almost) cry!
Yellowknife wedding portraits
We had lots of great ideas for the wedding portraits. The biggest thing I wanted was the cool Northern Canada rock and snow overlooking the Canadian wilderness. Pretty easy to find in Yellowknife! We just went to the tallest hill in town and it gave us lots of vantage points! We then DROVE on a lake! Yes! People in Northern Canada drive on lakes as highways! We put them right in the middle of the road (its no 401 or highway 1). Of course the one guy that passed us was like “What the $*#@ are these guys doing?”
Intimate destination wedding reception venue
They wanted to keep everything low key with their intimate destination wedding. For the reception, we had a backroom reserved at the Copperhouse (one of the best restaurants in town). The room had some pretty amazing lighting for photography so we were super happy. The food was amazing, with bison steak being a highlight of the trip for me! The night winded down and everyone went to bed fairly early. The beauty of a destination wedding is you have the rest of the week to hang out with your guests!
Fun touristy things
I won’t get into it too much but if you followed our Instagram stories during that time you would have watched some pretty funny stories with my dad. We did some pretty awesome stuff in Yellowknife as well! Waterfall hikes, northern lights watching around bonfires, snowmobiling, dog sledding, driving on a ice racetrack and cross country skiing, just to name a few. If you are thinking about doing a unique intimate destination wedding, I would totally recommend it, its going to be an amazing adventure!