The rehearsal dinner kicks off the wedding weekend and typically offers a more intimate setting for a pre-wedding celebration. Traditionally planned by the mother of the groom, the rehearsal dinner doesn’t compete with the wedding, but it does set the tone for the weekend. For the wedding of Samantha Lale and Jay Broughton, the tone was set with an elegant dinner and welcome party at The Bridge Building, following a fishing theme to pay homage to the groom’s waterside Alabama upbringing. “It’s all about personality – that goes for any event,” Hugh Howser of H Three Events tells us about making a rehearsal dinner special. “I have always been known for really grasping the client’s interests and adding them in unique ways to each event. By doing so, the guests have an unforgettable experience.” At this dinner, there was no shortage of personal details.

“The Bridge Building overlooks the Cumberland River. What could be better for a fisherman groom?!” Hugh says. For Carol Broughton and the couple, it was love at first sight when they visited the venue. “The Bridge Building brought a bit of history to the city of Nashville, and it reminded people of the importance of the Cumberland River in the thriving city,” Carol says. “The panoramic floor to ceiling windows offered a spectacular view of the city from across the river. And the walking bridge provided an easy stroll back to the live action of downtown Nashville.”

 

“Custom menus and the invitations were made of solid wood and tied perfectly with twine,” Hugh tells us.

Out-of-town guests received these playful invitations to a welcome party of the rooftop.

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Dinner was served to a total of 75 guests, with the bridal party seated at a long table and guests seated at round tables. Each table was outfitted with decorations that spoke to the theme. “Jay was born and raised in the sleepy little coastal town of Fairhope, Alabama. As a “boat boy,” he could captain a boat long before he could drive a car! Water flows through his veins, so a coastal theme took over with natural settings for the decorations — mosses and succulents arranged on table tops in tree-bark vases. Tables were topped with a sketch of different fish species indigenous to Mobile Bay, which in turn indicated the seating arrangements for guests — Red Snapper, Speckled Trout, and Grouper to name a few,” Carol tells us. “Both Jay and Samantha love coastal life. From Fairhope to Panama City, Florida and beyond, the couple enjoy every available moment on a boat, in the water or enjoying a sea breeze (literally and figuratively in their favorite summertime toddy!)”

Following dinner, an additional 75 guests joined them for cocktails and continued celebration on the rooftop. The following evening, Samantha and Jay exchanged vows and celebrated their nuptials at Country Music Hall of Fame, a meaningful spot for the couple as Samantha’s grandfather Billy Sherrill was inducted into the hall of fame in 2010. Let’s take a look at their Friday night celebration!

“I enjoyed creating all of the printed materials and brushing up my knowledge of fish species,” Hugh says.

The Bridge Building’s large windows offered views of the water.

Masculine and feminine touches were married in the design, catering the tastes to both the bride and groom.

The bridal party joined the bride and groom at a long table. “We added a loveseat for the couple at their head table to soften the overall hard surfaces of the room,” Hugh explains.

Candied bacon was a true treat!

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Dessert Designs never fails to provide the most delicious — and beautiful — cakes for any occasion.

Guests had their choice of flavors. Of course, we would have chosen caramel (Dessert Designs‘ speciality).

A wedge salad and encrusted chicken with arugula were served to the dinner guests.

Everyone raised a glass in honor of the soon-to-be bride and groom!

Heartfelt toasts are what make a rehearsal dinner so special.

Photos of the bride and groom showed a glimpse into their love story.

Napkins and koozies were personalized to fit the occasion.

Guests were encouraged to kick off their heels and don a pair of flip-flops.

In lieu of a traditional guest book, Samantha and Jay asked guests to sign a wooden anchor.

“The evening was perfect, including the General Jackson cruising by and the initials with a fish projected onto the column of the walking bridge. This projected image was designed and imagined by Hugh and Kate at H Three Events,” Carol shares.

In addition to drinks, passed appetizers (including fried macaroni and hot chicken sliders) were served during the welcoming party.

The next day, on May 21, 2016, Samantha and Jay said: “I do!” on the rooftop of The Country Music Hall of Fame.

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Best wishes to the happy couple! 

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