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Harborside Chapel and Rusty Pelican Wedding Day in Tampa FL


February 13, 2024


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Hi there! Welcome to the our blog! Here you will find authentic love stories, timeless tips and everything you need to know for a Tampa, Florida wedding. Stay a while and say hello!

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Congratulations, Chantel and Merrick! This winter, they invited their loved ones to a beautiful Tampa wedding day. Chantel and Merrick celebrated at two beautiful Tampa FL wedding venues: Harborside Chapel and the Rusty Pelican for their winter wedding and every moment was perfect! I can’t wait for you to see it all.

man hugs wife in lace wedding gown in front of Tampa sunset at the Rusty Pelican

Their Love Story 

Chantel and Merrick met in Tennessee. They dated for awhile and when she went to law school, they dated long distance for quite some time. After 2.5 years, Chantel and Merrick moved to Tampa and their long distance relationship was finally over. As they continued to fall in love with each other – and their new city – during that chapter of their lives. Now, they’re husband and wife, and I had the honor of capturing their Florida wedding day! 

Emotional Tampa FL Wedding Day

Chantel and Merrick’s wedding day was an emotional one – in the best way possible. It was clear from the moment that I arrived that it was going to be a special day. While preparing, Chantel and Merrick spent time with their loved ones and opted not to do a first look together. Instead, Chantel did a first look with her family, which was followed by a beautiful and heartfelt prayer blessing together. 

Harborside Chapel Winter Wedding

Their wedding ceremony took place at Harborside Chapel. This chapel is absolutely stunning! It was full of elegant ivory flowers near the wooden cross and the space is simply beautiful – lots of big open windows, bringing natural light into the space. Chantel and Merrick had lots of emotional moments throughout their ceremony. First was when Merrick saw Chantel for the first time – it was so sweet and he cried looking at his beautiful bride. During their vows, Chantel actually shared that she always knew this day would come when she met him years ago. Now, all of their dreams have come to life! 

Wedding Reception at the Rusty Pelican

After portraits outside the beautiful chapel and around the waterfront outside the Rusty Pelican, Chantel and Merrick welcomed their guests to their winter reception at the Rusty Pelican. The space was absolutely gorgeous – with over the top ivory flowers, gold accents, and blue napkins. With twinkling Christmas trees in the corner, there was a subtle hint of the Christmas holiday in the space which was so fun! Their reception was a great time! Chantel and Merrick surprised their guests with fog during their first dance. It was amazing! Chantel also dances with both her father and stepfather during the reception, another tear-jerker moment for everyone. 

Congratulations, Chantel and Merrick! I’m so happy for you both and excited to have been a part of sending you off on this next chapter of your life together. I wish you many years of happiness in Tampa!! 

Tampa FL Wedding Vendors

Chapel: Harborside Chapel
Reception Venue: The Rusty Pelican
Planner: The Gathering Planner
Florist: Beyond Floral
Photographer: Ruth Terrero Photography
Make Up Artist: Makeup by Regly
Draping and Place Settings: On The Move Rentals and Events
Dance Floor, flatware and Tables: Blossom Events Tampa
Chairs and Rentals: Classic Event Rentals
DJ: Tirado Events
Cake: Alessi Bakery
Violinist: Sebagabo

I love getting to capture these special moments so that you can remember your wedding day for the rest of your life! For me, your wedding day is so much more than just a day.

You deserve a wedding photographer who is invested in you and capturing every moment! Reach out and let’s connect to book your wedding day here in Florida (or around the world)!


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I'm Ruth and I'm so happy you're here. This journal is about weddings, engagement sessions, planning tips, and travels. Stay a while and say hello!

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