Leanne and Drew met at the ever-so-classy annual Duck Gumbo in Stuttgart, Arkansas in November 2016. Leanne was standing on a cooler, minding her own business and avoiding the crowds, when she noticed a stranger staring at her. She tried to ignore him, but who can ignore someone who is blatantly staring at you? Eventually, she had enough and sassed the stranger, asking him "Do you need something?" to which he sweetly replied, "I was just going to get a beer." Leanne quickly apologized, introduced herself and the two shared a beer while getting to know one another. They soon discovered that they shared a mutual friend who, later that evening, pushed Leanne to go meet her "future husband." Fast forward to today, and the couple is happily married.
Leanne believes the best part about their engagement is the fact that she had no idea it was coming. In October of 2018, the couple traveled to Lousiville, Kentucky to attend a Physique Convention that Leanne's brother was participating in for the first time. When they arrived, Drew suggested that the couple attend a race the Keenland Horse Track before the convention later that evening. Drew was carrying the engagement ring when he realized there were metal-detectors in front of the race track entrance. He bent down to "reach for something in his shoe" when he popped the question.
"I was ecstatic, to say the least," Leanne says. "We celebrated with just the two of us and took in the moment (Drew finally coming down from the nerves), then walked into the track and had the best time in Keenland. We didn’t hit it big on any horses but we won big in another way."
The couple decided to get married 14 months later in St. Marks Episcopal and celebrate the day at The Crank Family Estate. Not only did Leanne get married in 2019, but she also graduated from physician's assistant school, moved to Stuttgart, job hunted and planned a wedding. She had a wonderful experience with her wedding planner, Jessika McCuin, who was her rock.
They chose to get married in St. Mark's chapel because Drew's family is proudly Episcopalian, so being married in the church was important to the couple. The day was made extra special when Leanne and Drew each had their own priests in the church to marry them. They chose to celebrate their marriage at The Crank Family Estate because one of Drew's cousins owns the 5-acre property.
"How amazing is it that the home that one of my (now) family members has made their own is where I got to have the best night of my life," Leanne says. "I get to go back to this home for holidays, birthdays, cookouts, or just to hang out and smile and reminisce on our special day."
on the stationary: One thing I learned in planning a wedding it can be difficult to make some things a little more masculine to represent your future husband. Our stationery is one way I did that! I had a crest made for us that had all kinds of florals around it: roses, hydrangeas, tulips, etc. But, I had them go in and add rice stocks. The reason that the rice stocks are so important is because my husband is a dedicated third-generation farmer. It was such a sweet surprise for him and something that we can use forever!
on the engagement/wedding bands: I knew I wanted an oval-shaped diamond and I wanted gold and I did some shopping around and saw one on Pinterest that I had to have! Luckily, that's the one I ended up with.
on the wedding dress: I got my wedding dress at She Said Yes Bridal in Rogers. It was such a fun experience for us to have the salon to ourselves. Having that environment made you feel extra special. My dress was not what I would have ever expected it to be! I ended up in a strapless, all silk, fit-and-flare. No beading, no lace. It was gorgeous, classic and simple. But, in an attempt to cover up a scar from a previous skin cancer removal we added a one-shoulder piece, and to also make this dress one-of-a-kind. The lovely work of Audra at Audra Alterations made my one-shoulder mesh lace piece possible. Her work truly made my dress special and unique. That one shoulder was made as an attempt to cover something up and it turned out to be my favorite thing about the dress.
on the bridal fashion: I think that my favorite fashion element probably would be my grandmother's pearl earrings. I love my grandmother so dearly and she suffers from severe dementia and was not able to attend my wedding. Having that little piece of her with me on that day meant everything to me. I wish she knew how proud and honored I was to be able to wear those. I know that if she could understand it would have meant to the world to her, as well.
on the reception decor: I don’t even know how to describe the phenomenal job that Tanarah and Jessika did! They seriously are a power couple to be reckoned with! When I walked in I know my jaw hit the floor! From the tall centerpieces with gorgeous calla lilies to the large cylinder vases with standing tulips.
on the cake: I saw it and immediately feel in love. I loved the simplicity of it. And the floral detail at each layer just made the cake pop.
on the music: [It was] your regular party, Memphis soul type of music! Something to keep you on your feet all night long. Always such a hit!
on the band: One final thing that I loved that our band did was an exit song and the trumpet players escorted us our to our car. So, we quite literally danced all the way to our car. It was really one of my most favorite parts of the night!
Photography: Erin Wilson Photography and Films
Planning: Jessika McCuin Weddings
Florist: Tanarah Luxe Floral
Furniture rentals: Eventology
Lighting: Central Arkansas Entertainment
Cake and groom's cake: PattiCakes Bakery
Caterer: Coco’s Catering
Drink service: Ace Liquor
Invitations: Kanga Studio
Wedding dress: She Said Yes Bridal
One-shoulder lace overlay: Custom piece design by Audra Alterations
Bridesmaid dresses: Bella Bridesmaids
Groom/groomsmen attire: The Black Tux
Jeweler: Jones & Sons Jewelry
Hair: Donna Conder and Lynlee Wyatt
Makeup: Haley Hanna
Honeymoon: Poe Travel
Rehearsal dinner venue: The Marriott