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What's Up Weddings

Mellissa King & Elli Ben Jacobs

Oct 10, 2018 04:06PM ● By Brian Saucedo
Mellissa King & Elli Ben Jacobs
April 28, 2018
Chesapeake Beach Resort & Spa  //   Courage + Co Photography

Their Leisurely Engagement
Elli proposed on the steps of the Capitol on Christmas Eve 2016. “We were engaged for 16 months because we wanted to enjoy that moment in our life,” he shares. The couple booked their venue, DJ, and photographer in the first two months, then took a nine-month hiatus from planning, which allowed them to focus on their relationship and participate in pre-marital counseling. “It helped us deal with the stress that wedding planning brings,” Mellissa says.

They visited Chesapeake Beach Resort & Spa on the recommendation of a friend and fell in love with the outdoor dome and scenery. “Getting married on the water was the best!” Elli says.The

Waterfront Dome
Their Laid-Back Planning Process

“Most of the planning was pretty easy,” Mellissa says. “We didn’t solicit too many opinions and we went with what we liked. Our conversations usually started with, ‘Do you care about what kind of (insert item) we have?’ If neither of us cared, then we didn’t plan or pay for it.”

The Ceremony Dedication
The couple contemplated different ways to honor Mellissa’s father, who passed away in 2012, during the ceremony. “We didn’t want it to be cheesy,” she says. “So, we both wrote him letters about how we felt that day. It was a nice addition.”

The Black-Tie ’90s Bash 
“The theme for our wedding was Great Gatsby meets Britney Spears at the 1998 Prom,” Mellissa says jokingly. “We wanted everyone to be dressed up and looking beautiful with us…Oh, and did I mention partying?” Mellissa walked down the aisle to Mandy Moore’s “Only Hope,” and the couple selected *NSYNC’s “This I Promise You” for their first dance. Although they didn’t have an official color scheme, they incorporated blue, white, and gold accents throughout their decor to represent Elli’s Israeli heritage.

Their Favorite Moments
“Watching Elli cry twice,” Mellissa says. 
“I told him that if I didn’t make him cry, then I didn’t do my first job as his wife!” For Elli, the best part of the day was watching his bride walk down the aisle.

Their Best Advice
“Don’t plan a wedding while in grad school!” Mellissa quips. But if you do…on your big day, hand over the reins to somebody else, so you can check out. “Mellissa didn’t have any stress the day of because she delegated all communication to her maid of honor,” Elli says. “We let her know our priorities [ahead of time] so she could deal with any fiascos [that came up].”

The details: 
Caterer: Chesapeake Beach Resort & Spa | Bakery: Sweet Sue’s Bakeshop | Stationery: Kelsey Hargens | Florals: The Gateway Florist | DJ: Chris Styles 
Day of Coordinator: Emily Schupbach | Bride’s attire: Mei’s Bridal & Alterations (gown), Michael Kors (shoes) | Bride’s hair: Priceless Images
Bride’s makeup: CBRS Spa | Menswear: After Hours Tuxedo Rental | Rings: The Minors of Richmond | Favors: Champagne Taste Bridal
See our Ultimate Wedding Guide on page 80 for more vendor information.