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Posts tagged ‘great smoky mountains’

A Colorful Smoky Mountain Elopement

Today’s post is a repost from thebridelink.com  (with permission, of course). Enjoy it here, and if you’d like to see more photos, head over there! 

Smoky Mountain Elopement

Photography:  Leah Moyers Photography    Officiant : Radiant Gatherings

There is something so intimate, meaningful, and special about an elopement. The act of two people intentionally choosing to say ‘I do’ JUST to each other (and sometimes just parents or immediate family) has a certain charm that we adore. We were smitten when looking through talented Leah Moyers‘ photographs of their creekside ceremony in the Smoky Mountains National Park. We are all about infusing meaning into as many wedding day details as possible and Sandie and Greg did this to perfection – below you’ll read how this sweet couple met and why boats and water are paramount in their relationship (swoon…). After a personalized ceremony reading by officiant Radiant Gatherings, the newlyweds headed to Tennessee staple property Blackberry Farm for dinner and continued celebrations. Cheers to the new Mr. and Mrs!

Leah Moyers said:

“Smoky Mountain and Blackberry Farm Elopement: Sandie & Greg’s intimate elopement was so special, what incredible locations! We started the day in their room at Blackberry Farm in Walland, TN. Blackberry Farm is “one of America’s most celebrated intimate luxury hotels… situated on a pastoral 4,200-acre estate in the Great Smoky Mountains… one of the top rated properties in the world.” Sandie chose a beautiful Alice+Olivia dress with intricate embroidered scenes depicting wildlife and nature, very fitting for their wedding day in the mountains. Sandie’s earrings were cast rosemary. During the Victorian era, the herbs a bride carried held serious meaning: rosemary stood for remembrance. She wore a cast feather bracelet, her grandmother’s pin in her hair and clogs from Bryr’s handmade bridal line. We enjoyed wandering around the farm and taking portraits by the stream, the garden and the boat house. Sandie & Greg met on a weekend long kayaking trip and the boat house was a perfect place for them to have portraits made as boats are an important and sentimental part of their life together. Their ceremony took place by the water on mossy rocks in a magnificent part of the Smoky Mountains National Park. Intimate elopements are seriously amazing to photograph and I enjoyed spending the day with Sandie & Greg, capturing them in these beautiful natural areas. After they said I do Greg washed Sandie’s feet in the mountain stream and they celebrated with more portraits, a glass of champagne and wrapped themselves up in a Great Smoky Mountains National Park Pendleton blanket, a beautiful wedding gift. They ended their day with a dinner and weekend celebration at Blackberry Farm and then off to a Caribbean honeymoon. Officiant- Radiant Gatherings, Yacoubian Tailors, Pretty Little Papers, earrings and cuff bracelet by Michael Michaud, The Clay Pot Floral”

Smoky Mountain Elopement


In continuing with the mountain and nature theme, Sandie and Greg’s inviations featured the prettiest foraged foliage.


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smoky Mountain Elopement


Sandie’s boho-fabulous Alice + Olivia gown was so her! We loved the personalization this couple placed on their wedding day.


Smoky Mountain Wedding

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Now this is a first kiss… cue the ‘aaaaw’ …


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Greg washed Sandie’s feet in the mountain stream. We love this meaningful and traditional gesture of utmost respect and love.


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Celebrating America’s Treasures with the #pendle10park Explorers

Last year, we sent out a call on Instagram, asking for photographers to take our blankets home to their parks. We were overwhelmed with responses! After diligent review of well over a thousand Instagram feeds, we chose ten and called it good.

You’ve seen their work all year, but this video takes you on a tour of all ten parks, with a catchy banjo score that has us tapping our feet here at the office. So Happy Birthday to the National Park Service and thank you to our #pendletonparks explorers. You can see them all (and follow them ALL on Instagram) at the end of the movie.

 

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Pendleton for the National Parks

Volunteer Profile: Jim and Ellie Burbank for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Ed. note: Please enjoy a visit with some volunteers we profiled last year; Jim and Ellie Burbank.

Our National Parks are protected and enriched by a small army of volunteers whose time, enthusiasm and energy are put to use in so many ways. Over the next year, we would like to recognize the efforts of some of the people who help protect America’s Treasures. Today, we’re going to start with Jim and Ellie Burbank. The words below come from Lauren Gass, Special Projects Director for the Great Smoky Mountains Park.

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Jim and Ellie Burbank give selflessly of their time on a weekly basis to enhance and improve Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Residents of the great state of Tennessee, they embody the volunteer spirit.  They are former operators of the Snowbird Inn in Robbinsville, NC.  Ellie is a world-class chef and baker and Jim is a retired biologist with the Tennessee Valley Authority. Both are weekly hikers who thrill at any chance to introduce their friends and family members from across the U.S. and around the world to the wonders and beauty of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Jim is a key member of the Volunteers-in-Parks program, and the Friends of the Smokies Tennessee office just would not function very well without Ellie’s help.

Jim actually goes out and meets strangers and tells them about the national park in his work as a weekly educational interpretive volunteer in Cades Cove, and he meets plenty of them with 2.5 million people visiting this beloved valley in Great Smoky Mountains National Park every year.  He also leads monthly full moon walks in the Cove for campers and families to experience the quietude of this mountain treasure at night.  Jim also leads wildflower walks for other nonprofit organizations including Friends of the Smokies, and has helped countless hundreds of hikers differentiate between a yellow trillium and a trout lily.

Ellie acknowledges all of the contributions made to Friends of the Smokies, which involves keeping the organization’s donor records up-to-date and accurate, printing tens of thousands of acknowledgment letters each year, and she does it all in two days each week.  She has volunteered with Friends for more than 14 years, and is the equivalent of another part-time staff member. Jim and Ellie dedicate substantial amounts of time to impart their love of Great Smoky Mountains National Park to others, and they take their volunteer work very seriously.  They are extremely knowledgeable about the Park and its needs.

The Great Smoky Mountains national Park hosts over 9,000,000 visitors each year. Yes, you read that correctly–Nine. Million. Visitors. As the most-visited park in the United States, it needs the help of people like the Burbanks. We thank them sincerely for their generosity and commitment.

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Learn more about helping to support our National Parks here.

Taking a Blanket Home: Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the #pendle10park explorers

 

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Welcome to the most visited national park in the United States, Great Smoky Mountains National Park. These misty mountains welcome nine to ten million visitors per year. The park covers more than 800 square miles in Tennessee and North Carolina, making it the largest national park east of the Rockies.

We sent our blanket home to the Great Smokys with one of our #pendle10park explorers. True to their name, the mountains were cloaked with heavy mist, caused by high elevation, 80 inches of rainfall per year, and a multitude of flora; 130 species of trees, over 100 native shrub species, and some 1,600 species of flowering plants.

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The Cherokee called the region Shaconage, which translates to “mountains of the blue smoke.”

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The park is home to many beautiful waterfalls that also play a part in creating that wonderful haze.

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As an International Biosphere Reserve, the Park’s biological diversity is preserved and studied. A staggering 10,00 different species of plants and animals are recorded here, but there may be as many as 9o,000 more species of plant an animal life still to be identified.

With the help of a distance lens, our explorer encountered some of this wildlife, including one of the park’s 1500 black bears.

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Elk, which were re-introduced to the park in 2001, are becoming more common. A herd of around 140 ranges on the North Carolina side of the park. Again, we promise that these beautiful shots were taken at a distance.

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Incredible shots.

Great Smoky National Park is open 365 days a year, and park entry is free. Free! Yes, that means you have access to 850 miles of hiking (there is a fee for overnight camping. But it’s worth it to wake up and smell the coffee in a paradise like this.

 

 

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Many thanks to our #pendle10park explorer, Ben Matthews.

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See more of Ben’s work here:

Ben Matthews on Instagram 

Ben Matthews

Shop Pendleton’s National Park collection here: Great Smoky

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Volunteer Profile: Jim and Ellie Burbank for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Our National Parks are protected and enriched by a small army of volunteers whose time, enthusiasm and energy are put to use in so many ways. Over the next year, we would like to recognize the efforts of some of the people who help protect America’s Treasures. Today, we’re going to start with Jim and Ellie Burbank. The words below come from Lauren Gass, Special Projects Director for the Great Smoky Mountains Park.

burbanks

Jim and Ellie Burbank give selflessly of their time on a weekly basis to enhance and improve Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Residents of the great state of Tennessee, they embody the volunteer spirit.  They are former operators of the Snowbird Inn in Robbinsville, NC.  Ellie is a world-class chef and baker and Jim is a retired biologist with the Tennessee Valley Authority. Both are weekly hikers who thrill at any chance to introduce their friends and family members from across the U.S. and around the world to the wonders and beauty of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Jim is a key member of the Volunteers-in-Parks program, and the Friends of the Smokies Tennessee office just would not function very well without Ellie’s help.

Jim actually goes out and meets strangers and tells them about the national park in his work as a weekly educational interpretive volunteer in Cades Cove, and he meets plenty of them with 2.5 million people visiting this beloved valley in Great Smoky Mountains National Park every year.  He also leads monthly full moon walks in the Cove for campers and families to experience the quietude of this mountain treasure at night.  Jim also leads wildflower walks for other nonprofit organizations including Friends of the Smokies, and has helped countless hundreds of hikers differentiate between a yellow trillium and a trout lily.

Ellie acknowledges all of the contributions made to Friends of the Smokies, which involves keeping the organization’s donor records up-to-date and accurate, printing tens of thousands of acknowledgment letters each year, and she does it all in two days each week.  She has volunteered with Friends for more than 14 years, and is the equivalent of another part-time staff member. Jim and Ellie dedicate substantial amounts of time to impart their love of Great Smoky Mountains National Park to others, and they take their volunteer work very seriously.  They are extremely knowledgeable about the Park and its needs.

The Great Smoky Mountains national Park hosts over 9,000,000 visitors each year. Yes, you read that correctly–Nine. Million. Visitors. As the most-visited park in the United States, it needs the help of people like the Burbanks. We thank them sincerely for their generosity and commitment.

   National-Park-Collection-100_Color-Logo

Learn more about helping to support our National Parks here.