It was a wedding, a bachelor and bachelorette party, a reception and a honeymoon.
For Mimi and Victor Gotelaere, who were married Saturday, Aug. 11, 2012, at Summer Meltdown, the music festival was everything and then some.
"We were at Meltdown for a few days before we even had the wedding so it was just like a big party the whole time," Mimi says. "We kind of looked at that whole long weekend as everything rolled into one. It was great."
The Bellingham couple loves local music and both are big fans of the annual Summer Meltdown, which takes place every summer at the Whitehorse Mountain Amphitheater in Darrington. Some of their favorite bands were scheduled to play and they have friends whom they only see at the event, so the two decided to say their vows in the midst of the festival.
"Live music and dancing has everything to do with how we met and got together in the first place," Victor says.
They had the perfect spot in mind, as long as their guests were willing to get their feet wet.
"The spot where the river access is there, it's heaven," Victor says.
For the ceremony, they waded into the warm water, surrounded by a circle of friends and family, dressed in togas and saris.
"The walk down to the river, I felt like I was in a dream," Mimi says.
Mimi's children and Victor's daughter were part of the ceremony as well, saying their "I dos" to becoming a family. It was a moment of pure elation.
"At the end, when we were kissing, someone started splashing us, so everyone started splashing us," says Mimi. "It was like getting baptized in the river. It was beautiful, so much love."
Once the ceremony was done, the reception blended into the festival as guests danced into the night. As the festival wrapped up on Sunday, they had a chance to reflect and take everything in.
"You have your idea of, 'This would be so cool if this would happen or that would happen,' and everything just went so much better," Victor says. "We wanted it to be about music and people being together."