When Katy first described their plans for the wedding, I knew this was going to be a day like no other... Indeed, it wasn't. Not even close to other weddings that I have photographed.   First of all they reserved an entire campground for two nights, not just for themselves but for the 100+ guests! Mount Madonna State Park, just west of Gilroy up in the redwood forests, has this amazing park with an amphitheater, which apparently gets used a lot for weddings. All the guests came up Friday night and camped in their exclusive little grove of trees, which would serve as the reception area the following evening. This in itself was awesome, but it also meant that everyone was there to help put on what I can only describe as a love-filled, community-crowed-sourced extravaganza, where everyone chipped in to do something in an ultra organized fashion. From decorating the nearby amphitheater to preparing the sumptuous meal, it was all done by their friends and family.

In short, it was a day to remember and cherish for everyone in attendance.... Not because everything was done to perfection. There were challenges and improvisions left and right. But how this community rallied together to celebrate Katy and Val is what made it so special for me. I love how they made me a part of this effort and for that I am truly grateful to be a witness and documenter of their incredibly fun wedding -- thanks Katy and Val!


they tied the knot outdoor wedding near gilroy

wedding ceremony redwood groves near gilroy

gilroy hills redwood trees bride and groom

first dance outdoor reception