When it comes to heart-achingly sweet weddings, Dena and Anthony’s wedding at the Dana was certainly one to beat– and it’s not just the Sweet Cheeks desserts that made it that way. From the way Michelle Garibay managed to organize every little detail to perfection to the way that Dena and Anthony’s friends lauded them with praise and appreciation in their speeches, we couldn’t get enough of this wedding– and we know you won’t either!
After a few years of dating, it seemed like kismet that they had walked into the park that day at the same time; after all to paraphrase the classic Casablanca line, of allll the dog parks in all of San Diego, they walked into that one.
It all started when the two adopted dogs around the same time– and happened to visit the same dog park as one another. As their dogs played, and they occasionally saw one another across the park, their crush grew bigger and bigger.
Then Anthony went months without seeing Dena, and he knew that he had to make a move if he ever saw her again. So with a note written on a Starbucks napkin, Anthony made sure he took that chance to get to know Dena– and the two never looked back. Now years later, they were about to walk into the same place once again; the place where they would finally get married.
We adored getting to see how Michelle Garibay wove their story throughout this wedding at the Dana; from the dogs that were on napkins to the way that their fairytale courtship was capped by portraits in front of fireworks
One of the amazing things that struck us about Dena and Anthony’s wedding was that the wedding party was made up of the most incredible mix of friends that Dena and Anthony had had for life. While that may not surprise many, it’s always incredible to see brides and grooms like them who have managed to create a beautiful chosen family, and hold onto the friendships that started on the playground, in extracurricular activities, and in calculus class.
For us? It speaks of your ability to grow alongside the people you care about– and how you’re willing to be there, even when everything isn’t always pretty and fun; and that’s certainly Dena and Anthony to a tee. Throughout the day, everyone who spoke talked of how the two go out of their way for both one another, and everyone, whether they’re a friend or stranger.
That’s why one of our favorite parts of this wedding at the Dana– other than the absolutely ADORABLE dogs– was hearing about how Dena genuinely cares about all of the people in her life, and always will make sure that they’re happy and taken care of. It was incredible to hear the lengths that Dena would go to in order to help her friends and family; it shows what a truly incredible and caring person she truly is.
And Anthony is the perfect match to take care of someone who looks out for others so often. From the way that he looked at her as she walked down the aisle to the way that he consistently checked in with her throughout the day, Anthony always put Dena first; and it’s so apparent to everyone who sees that their love for one another is pure, genuine, and it seems like it should have been taken right out of a fairytale.
After the speeches, it was so much fun seeing everyone dance around the floor to beats played by CSquared Events; a joyful celebration of the love Dena and Anthony had for one another, barely a single person avoided the dancefloor during this wedding at the Dana. One of the things that Dena and Anthony had told us that they were so excited for was to finally have their families, side by side and able to celebrate together– and they finally were, together on the dance floor as they spun one another around and enjoyed the night.
To Dena and Anthony; firstly, we absolutely adore you two; the way that you talk to one another and the way that you look at one another is heart-achingly sweet. Working with you has been an incredible experience and we wish we could do it over a million times again; we’re so happy for you two– and so happy that Nina and Mr. Bean are officially siblings!
Wedding Photography : Clove and Kin | Venue : The Dana on Mission Bay | Wedding Planner : Michelle Garibay | Florals : Oak and Amble | Gown Boutique : The Bustle | Entertainment : CSquared Events | Desserts and Baked Goods : Sweet Cheeks Bakery | Hair & Makeup Stylist : Jessica Frederick | Rentals : Tbd San Diego Rentals | Rentals : More Rentals | Officiant : David Cutler |