Wedding Venues with a Water View: Halifax, Nova Scotia

A little sampling of some wedding venues with water views near Halifax, Nova Scotia:

Wedding Venue: Charlottetown Confederation Centre

This morning I spotted an online query about wedding venues in Charlottetown, PEI. The bride wanted something unique and a bit different. The first space that jumped to mind was The Confederation Centre, a very large arts complex which houses a gallery, a library, halls and a theatre.

The Centre can accommodate intimate weddings up to large banquets with seating for hundreds of guests. One room in particular is striking – the stately, marble-lined Memorial Hall that looks out directly on historic Province House. Certainly not the only choice in Charlottetown, but a very versatile one.

An Eco-Wedding Venue: Windhorse Farm

Windhorse Farm seems to be many (good) things rolled into one: farm, lodge, plant nursery, event venue and a peaceful retreat that is focused on sustainable and joyful living.

Located in New Germany on the South Shore of Nova Scotia, it has accommodations for up to 50 guests, catering facilities that can serve organic, vegan dishes and beautiful gardens to be married in. Just check out these photos by Jeff Cooke Photography!

Make-Up Tips for a Beach Wedding

Maritime Weddings in PEI

Michelle Cudmore is a professional make-up artist living in PEI. She just sent me a great list of make-up tips for beach weddings in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island where, let’s say, we have a unique climate…

1. Prep your skin with a primer, but this is the one (and only day) do not apply sunblock on your face. Sunblock reflects too much light with flash photography, so your face will look whiter in your photos than what it really is – I call this flash face, and it’s not very flattering.  If you plan on being out in the hot sun all day, try to arrange to get your professional photos done first, then add a mist of sunblock after your photos are done.
2. Make sure you prime your eyelids to prevent your eyeshadow from creasing. I like to use Urban Decay‘s Primer Potion on my brides.
3. Use waterproof/sweat proof makeup to prevent smudges and makeup meltdowns. Waterproof mascara is a must, but other waterproof products that I use on my brides are Make Up For Ever‘s Aqua eyeliners and lipliners which are both waterproof. I also use a line of airbrush foundation that is sweat proof and waterproof (it won’t even come off in the shower!)
4. Summer in the Maritimes can be very humid, and that moist heat can really cause your makeup to run, crease and smudge.  To prevent your blush and lipstick from travelling south, use lip and cheek stains. Benefit and Tarte are two companies that make fantastic lip and cheek stains that are lightweight, long lasting and won’t budge in the moist heat.
5. When in doubt, hire a professional makeup artist 🙂 We have the tools and the skills to deal with the demanding summer environment!

Photography by Rachel Peters.

Music Notes from Amy: Dartmouth Commons Park, NS

Halifax, Nova Scotia has some lovely parks for outdoor weddings and they are very, very popular so if you are interested – book early!

I’ve been fortunate to play guitar for weddings at a number of city parks and facilities including Sir Sandford Fleming Park, Ferry Terminal Park and St. Mary’s Boat Club. If you need chairs for your guests Macfarland’s will come and set them up for you (and take them away afterwards!)

My latest park wedding was in early June, when the rain stayed away long enough for Suzy & Jamie to get married at Dartmouth Commons Park near Halifax, Nova Scotia. The sun came out and it was just beautiful. The spot was in the centre of the park beneath the Gazebo, next to a low stone wall that was filled with bright flowers and surrounded by red maples.

I’ve always enjoyed playing music for outdoor weddings – there is something magical about the sound of an instrument played outdoors in the sunshine. Suzy picked some beautiful pieces for the prelude and ceremony including Bach’s ‘Air from Orchestral Suite No. 3” & ‘Arioso’, Handel’s ‘Water Music’ and Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’.

After the ceremony everyone moved to the Holiday Inn Dartmouth and I played jazz and pop for the reception. Congrats to you both!

Music Notes from Amy: A Celtic Wedding on the River

Maritime Weddings in New Brunswick, Canada

Megan & Chris wanted their wedding near Fredericton, New Brunswick to have a bit of a Celtic touch, and what better way to do that than with music! They were married in a lovely country church in New Maryland, NB, followed by a reception at The Riverside Resort on the St. John River.

I played Celtic music (on solo guitar) for the prelude, wedding and reception with the bridesmaids walking to Neil Flaherty’s Drake and the bride (who looked absolutely radiant) to a folk version of Here Comes The Bride.

At the resort, everything was beautifully decorated by Nancy Curtis of Perfect Parties by Nancy in a white on white theme. It was great to meet her and her team – they paid so much attention to every detail! Congrats to the couple!

Photo: Fredericton Tourism.

Music Notes from Amy: Traditional with a Twist – Classical Wedding Music + The Beatles

Maritime Wedding Music

Vikki & Kevin’s wedding at Pier 21 in Halifax, Nova Scotia was so light and bright. The large windows flooded the ceremony location with sunlight and complimented the bright, summery yellow of their wedding colours. I even got a peek of their wedding cake (from SugarHigh Cakes) which was beautifully done in the same yellow with sugar daisies all around.

The bride and groom chose some traditional pieces for their ceremony including ‘Canon in D’ (Pachelbel), Here Comes the Bride (Wagner) and the Wedding March (Mendelssohn) for their recessional. However, they wanted something a little different for the Signing of the Registry and selected ‘All You Need Is Love’ by the Beatles.

After the ceremony I played a little bit of jazz for the cocktail reception and the party went on into the night with music from the Celtic band Da Rock. Congrats Vikki & Kevin!

Photography by Eunice Montenegro.

Music Notes from Amy: Renaissance Music for a Halifax Wedding

Maritime Wedding Music

In addition to this blog and The Maritime Wedding Directory, I also work as wedding musician playing jazz and classical guitar in Halifax and Nova Scotia.

This weekend I played for Dina & Raphael’s wedding ceremony at St. George’s Greek Orthodox Church in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The couple asked if I could play some Renaissance pieces for the prelude and I was happy to oblige. Among the pieces I played was an anonymous Lute Fantasia transcribed by Oscar Chilesotti from a 16th century manuscript. I also played some Baroque pieces including selections from a Lute Suite by S.L. Weiss.

The bride and groom also had two special (and very different!) songs in mind for the recessional. They wanted Boccherini’s Passacale from La Musica Notturna delle Strade di Madrid (also known as the theme from the movie Master and Commander) fading into the jazz standard At Last. I love arranging new pieces for solo guitar and so I worked out an arrangement. What a fun wedding to play – congrats Dina & Raphael!

Rustic Wedding Retreats

Maritime Wedding Venues

The natural beauty of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and PEI makes the Maritimes the perfect place to get married (at least, as long as the weather cooperates!). If you are looking for a Down East wedding venue that celebrates the great outdoors, here are five suggestions for back-to-nature, rustic wedding venues that feature beautiful landscapes, barns and farmhouses.

The Second Paradise Retreat, near Lunenburg, Nova Scotia: I played at a wedding here in 2009 and this hidden gem really caught my attention. Secluded, farmhouse-like cottages, acres of green meadows and a boathouse are just some of the features.

The Carriage House, New London, PEI: This little out-of-the way place on Prince Edward Island’s North Shore seems miles away from the hustle and bustle of modern life.

Shobac Cottages and Barn, near Lunenburg, Nova Scotia: Whenever someone asks me where one can rent a barn for a wedding in Nova Scotia I point them to Shobac Cottages. Their barn is huge, octagonal and absolutely stunning – and the modern architecture of the cottages make this rustic retreat unique.

The Music Barn, Sackville, New Brunswick: Speaking of barns, this music venue also doubles as a wedding reception hall. Located less than an hour outside of Moncton, it seats up to 300 theatre-style.

Trout Point Lodge, 45 minutes from Shelburne, Nova Scotia: This year-round luxury lodge is as deep into the Nova Scotian wilderness as one can get! But they have everything one would need for a lovely, small wedding including on-site gourmet catering.

Real Maritime Weddings: Maria & Samuel in Charlottetown, PEI

Maritime Weddings in Charlottetown, PEI
Maritime Weddings in Charlottetown, PEI
Maritime Weddings in Charlottetown, PEI
Maritime Weddings in Charlottetown, PEI
Maritime Weddings in Charlottetown, PEI
Maritime Weddings in Charlottetown, PEI
Maritime Weddings in Charlottetown, PEI
Ceremony: St. Dunstan’s Basilica // Reception Venue: The Rodd Charlottetown // Flowers: Island Meadows Farms / Barb Jewell // Dress: Mori Lee // Bridesmaid’s Dresses: Sears // Birdcage Veil: by lovecharlie // Centrepieces and Programs: DIY // Favours: // Photographer: Studio 1948