Love at first sight. It’s a lovely concept, but one that can go awry when only one of the pair immediately sees hearts. Love at second sight, however …

Sammantha and Connor are all smiles on their big day.

Sammantha and Connor are all smiles on their big day.

Sammantha Rhea and Connor Kelly first met when they were set up while on a visit to Lake Lanier in northern Georgia. While Connor admits to immediately knowing that Sammantha was the girl of his dreams, he acknowledges that she was not quite as receptive to him initially. He told us about their meeting at the lake: “Conversation was short, and body language was guarded. Not a great start, to say the least.” Determined to try again, Connor found his second chance at the 2008 Georgia-Alabama football game. Connor, a Georgia student, invited Sammantha to come cheer on her beloved Tide in Athens. The two tailgated and talked all day. Sammantha warmed up to Connor, leaving him feeling like the day had been a big win, even though his Bulldogs lost. Five years later, Connor proposed at Lenox Park near Atlanta’s Buckhead area, and this is the story of their happily ever after.

The entire bridal party looking very dapper and chic in hues complimentary of the season's colors behind them.

The entire bridal party looks very dapper and chic in hues complementary of the season’s colors behind them.

This is a view looking down the aisle of the chapel before the ceremony began. We love the architecture of the space—it is not a church, but definitely has a spiritual nature.

This is a view looking down the aisle of the chapel before the ceremony began. We love the architecture of the space—it is not a church, but definitely has a spiritual nature.

The couple seals the deal.

They do!

It's always fun to see the excitement on the faces as bride and groom walk up the aisle together.

It’s always fun to see the excitement on the faces as the bride and groom begin the walk back up the aisle together.

View of the Ashton Gardens ballroom before the party began. Notice the large windows that invite the outdoor beauty inside the room.

A view of the Ashton Gardens ballroom before the party began | Notice the large windows that invite the outdoor beauty inside the room.

The couple married at Ashton Gardens, a private garden and chapel venue perfect for weddings. The beautiful chapel and reception hall with floor-to-ceiling windows provide an ideal place to have an indoor event with an outdoor feel. Sammantha told us that Ashton Gardens was perfect for her wedding last fall because the expansive windows allowed guests to enjoy all the changing colors of the trees on the private grounds. She even arranged for outdoor lighting so that everyone could continue to enjoy the autumn colors after dark. To further emphasize the beauty of the season, most of the colors in the wedding fell into the family of warm oranges, deep reds and bright yellows.

A beautiful fall bouquet

Even the dinner plates featured delicious-looking fall colors.

More fall hues … and flavors!

In lieu of wedding favors, Sammantha and Connor made donations to <a href="http://www.choa.org/" target="_blank">Children's Healthcare of Atlanta</a>. Sammantha works as a nurse at the center and wanted to give back to the children she cares for.

In lieu of wedding favors, Sammantha and Connor made donations to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Sammantha works as a nurse at the center and wanted to give back to the children she cares for.

With their traditional vows said, Sammantha, Connor and their guests were ready to celebrate! While the DJ warmed up, guests filled up. Petite pulled BBQ biscuits for nibbling, a seasonal field green salad, decadent shrimp and smoked mozzarella chicken roulade, crisp, pan-seared lemon-pepper Gulf snapper, a beautiful cheese display, an étouffée and grits martini bar, and much more filled the buffet table. Sammantha told us the food was one of the easiest parts of her wedding planning because she left everything to the experts at Ashton Gardens. She received rave reviews from all her friends, she adds. With a menu like hers, it’s not hard to imagine why!

No wedding is complete without a delicious cake. After tasting one from Whole Foods at a friend's wedding, she knew she had to have the same for her own special day. Alternating layers of chocolate and vanilla cake with buttercream frosting was an easy and delectable choice. The rosettes gave each slice a little extra dollop of the buttercream. Yum!

No wedding is complete without a delicious cake. After tasting one from Whole Foods at a friend’s wedding, she knew she had to have the same for her own special day. Alternating layers of chocolate and vanilla cake with buttercream frosting was an easy and delectable choice. The rosettes gave each slice a little extra dollop of the buttercream. Yum!

 

Sammantha and Connor wanted everyone to enjoy their celebration as much as they did. DJ Louie’s music kept the bride, groom and all their guests up and moving late into the evening. All that dancing certainly had people working up an appetite, which they satisfied with some late-night snacks. Grilled cheese and french fries satiated the hunger for those who were over-danced—or over-served!

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Who will be next down the aisle?!

View More: http://sugarsnapatl.pass.us/kellywedding

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Just a little selfie action with close friends … too cute!

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One of the couple’s favorite wedding details was the wine bottles on every table. The bottles served the dual purpose as table markers for guests to find their seating, as well as a guest book of sorts. Each bottle was surrounded by sharpies, and guests were encouraged to write notes to the couple on the label. The bottles were then collected for the bride and groom to save. The pair plans to drink the bottle with the table number that corresponds to the anniversary they are celebrating. With their first anniversary approaching this October, we’re sure they will enjoy savoring bottle #1 and all the memories it holds!

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We love a good sparkler send-off.

View More: http://sugarsnapatl.pass.us/kellywedding

Cheers to Mr. and Mrs. Connor Kelly! Best wishes!

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