Real Northwest Arkansas Wedding: Brianna Rae & Joe Maurer of Bentonville
Brianna Rae & Joe Maurer
May 27, 2017• Bentonville
21c Museum Hotel
There’s always some detail that reminds a couple of how they met. For Brianna Rae and Joe Maurer, that something is penguins. The two met in 2013 while Brianna was bartending at The Penguin Dueling Piano Bar in Columbia, Missouri. Joe had a crush on Brianna from afar, and finally got the nerve to order a drink from her one night. The next day, Joe popped up on Brianna’s Facebook as a suggested friend. She thought it might be a sign, so she added him. Minutes later, Joe messaged Brianna. The two have been inseparable ever since.
Joe swept Brianna off her feet with a magical proposal on New Year’s Eve in 2015 at The Magic Tree in Columbia. The tree is a Christmas tradition in town, and it illuminates a little park with tens of thousands of light bulbs. After the proposal, the couple immediately went back to The Penguin piano bar to celebrate with friends where it all began.
Unlike most brides, Brianna wanted to be completely surprised from start to finish with her wedding. She left everything in the capable hands of her mother and their wedding planner, Amanda Reed. The only thing Brianna and Joe knew going into their wedding day was what they’d be wearing.
“I am not kidding when I say this—I didn’t even know our color scheme,” she says. “We wanted to be totally surprised. We were absolutely blown away with the results, and I would not change a single thing. It was magical to us.”
As an added bonus, the venue, 21c Museum Hotel, is known for its penguins— Brianna and Joe’s favorite animal and, the name of the bar where they met.
How They Customized
Music to Our Ears
“Can You Feel the Love Tonight”
by Elton John
Since the entire planning process was hands off, Brianna and Joe were just as surprised as guests when they walked into 21c to a colorful soiree. One of Brianna’s favorite highlights of the day was walking into the reception hall for the first time and being blown away by the work of her wedding planner and mom.
The few bits of customization that Brianna and Joe knew about was that Stephen Winter, a close friend of Brianna’s, and the piano player who happened to be playing the night she and Joe met, sang at the couple’s wedding.
Amanda Reed had the couple fill out a list of fun facts about each other that she used to make personalized cocktail napkins. One of the napkins told about the moment Joe knew he wanted to marry Brianna. Joe said it was when Brianna bought him an XBox One for Christmas in 2014. Coincidentally, Brianna had already planned to surprise him with an XBox groom’s cake, further proving that the stars aligned perfectly for this beautiful and unique wedding.
|Photographer||Steph Smith Weddings|
|Venue||21c Museum Hotel, Bentonville|
|Event Planner||Amanda Reed Weddings, Springdale|
|Caterer||The Hive, Bentonville|
|Pies||Fork + Crust, Rogers|
|Drinks||The Hive, Bentonville|
|Rental Company||Eventures Party Rentals, Fayetteville|
|Lighting||Lightworks Events, Fayetteville|
|Wedding Stationery||So Inviting, Fayetteville|
|Calligraphy||Momma Lo Letters|
|Reception Musician||Stephen Winter (piano bar musician), Little Rock|
|♥||Wedding Gown||Tesori, Fayetteville|
|Groom & Groomsmen Attire||Men's Wearhouse|
|Jeweler||Buchroeders Jewelers of Columbia, Missouri|
|Makeup||Genoa Falar Makeup Artist, Fayetteville|
|Rehearsal Dinner Venue||Tavola Trattoria, Bentonville|
|♥||Wedding Vendor We Love|
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