Encountering Wenatchee: A Portrait Series

We spent the month of June working on a special project. We photographed 19 different people who make Wenatchee, Wenatchee.  The idea for this series was born from a desire to help individuals connect with this community. Although the valley has grown to over 100,000 people, it still has a small town feel. Even I tend to find myself seeing familiar faces everywhere I go. We put up a gallery at Caffe Mela in Wenatchee, so while the locals waited for coffee, they could read about their community and friends. The gallery has been hanging for the whole month of July. Over the coming months, we will be highlighting each individual every Friday.  We hope you enjoy learning a little more about the people who call Wenatchee home.

Josh McPherson, Adam James, Kent McMullen

 Just a short six years ago Pastor Josh, Pastor Adam and 10 families started Grace City Church. Today, there are over 650 people who regularly attend the services that are held at the Performing Arts Center on Sunday mornings. It has been a wild ride experiencing their church grow so quickly for these two Central Washington natives. Seeing the need for more help, they asked Pastor Kent to oversee the elders at GCC. He brought with him over 35 years of successful ministry experience with him.

These men have been called to live “gospel-centered” lives. The gospel is the good news that God the Father came to rescue fallen mankind through repentance of sin and faith in the life, death, and resurrection of His son Jesus Christ. Because of this belief, they have a heart to serve the community through sharing this good news and also helping people in very real ways.

Grace City Church has partnered with The NCW Loan Fund and Wells Fargo Foundation to provide small loans to entrepreneurial Latina women wanting to start a business. Members of the church will be working with these women; helping them build a business plan and continuing support as they build their business. With these loans, they hope to build up the growing Hispanic community in the Wenatchee Valley.

They have also taken an active roll in helping the community of Pateros who have been greatly hurt by the wildfires. They have lead their church with helping with recovery and donations in forms of gift cards and generators to help those affected.

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Steve & Kristin | Atam Winery Lake Chelan Wedding

Steve and Kristin’s wedding was surrounded by clouds of uncertainty. Literally. There was (and still is) a raging forest fire just north of Lake Chelan and the week prior to their wedding, everything was a smokey scene. But, thankfully on their morning of their wedding, there were blue skies for the first time that week! The air was clear and the the temperature had even dropped to a more comfortable 80s something instead of the 100 it had been. Kristin had done a wonderful job working with wedding planner, Loreen to bring together many special touches. We loved the “Don’t be Blinded by Our Love” sign that accompanied sunglasses for the guests.  They had a special cornhole game constructed for them that guests enjoyed playing during the reception.  A favorite moment was an unexpected toast by Kristin’s brother. It was very funny and unique to say the least! Not only was Kristin involved with the planning, but Steve got in on the action, creating boutonnieres out of a shotgun shells for all the men. We loved the creativity! He was very proud of them, as he  should be! The party started with a special dance for Kristin put on by the bridesmaids. And we all got to enjoy a gorgeous sunset while people danced and tasted the fabulous cake a friend of Kristin’s made.   Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Toy!

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Photographer: Ben&Molly
Venue: Atam Winery
Wedding Planner: True Expressions Wedding Planning
Rentals: Lake Chelan Wedding Rentals
Caterer: Plus Catering
Cake: By a friend, Krista Farmer
Flowers: J9Bing Floral Design
Make up: Jonna Renee
Dj: Michael Smith
Videographer: Whiskey Too Productions

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Dustin and Molly | Maple Valley Wedding Photography

Molly and Dustin met 6 short years ago. They have been through some tough times in their lives over the past years, including Molly’s mom passing away of cancer just 2 months ago. After meeting in college, graduating college and now beginning careers, they have the opportunity to become husband and wife. Molly artfully crafted their wedding theme with a vintage inspired color palate of pink, mint green, gold and coral. They opted for a small personal cake accompanied by a gorgeous dessert bar; complete with rice crispies, red velvet cake pops, doughnut holes, and sugar cookies. I loved listening to each touching toast about the couple’s kindness and tenacity along with some really funny stories. It was a super hot day for Western Washington, but we were thankful for the beautiful weather that gave us a gorgeous sunset! They left in Dustin’s father’s Impala that he had immaculately resorted.

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 Molly had been hinting to Dustin her desire for diamond earrings. Thankfully he picked up on it!

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Maple Valley Wedding Photography Olson Mansion Photo (10)They engraved their rings with the words “I Love You More”.

Maple Valley Wedding Photography Olson Mansion Photo (11)Molly’s mom, Susie, had a friend who was by her side as she fought cancer. Now that her mom has passed away, she’s their adopted mom. She made hankie right before Susie passed away that said “my daughter’s wedding”.

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In lieu of guest favors, they gave a donation to the hospice center that cared for her mom.Maple Valley Wedding Photography Olson Mansion Photo (43)

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Maple Valley Wedding Photography Olson Mansion Photo (48)That moment when your groomsmen says “consummated their relationship” instead of “commenced their relationship”. It was the funniest thing that has happened in a long time!

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molly - Hi Jan! Once Molly and Dustin receive all of the images, there will be an online link where you can go to view and purchase pictures. They will have the password to the gallery that they can give to whomever they like.2014/07/23 – 14:57

Tresa Baker - I don’t know Dustin and Molly, but wow! What a beautiful wedding, and you captured all the fun and happiness perfectly. It looks like you did not miss a single memory. I got choked up when I read about the handkerchief.2014/07/16 – 23:06

Georgia Lercara - So Loved the incredible photography capturing the precious moments of this Awesome Couple. Wow and Wow2014/07/16 – 16:09

Jan Fitzgerald - Ben and Molly Photography…you are amazing! You captured every beautiful moment of my nephew Dustin, and new niece Molly’s wedding. I’d love to order some of these pictures for the family gallery wall I have in my house. Good job!2014/07/16 – 10:32

Camp Gilead Women’s Retreat | Carnation, Wa

This weekend I had the privilege of attending the Women’s Retreat at Camp Gilead in Carnation, Washington. Each year in May they host about 100 women who come together to have a relaxing weekend. There are workshops on things like canning foods, how to take better pictures of your kids, and biblical topics as well. I was really touched listening to some ladies teach on grief as they talked about their experiences loosing their loved ones at a young age. Some of us went for an early morning walk along the river, which is always a great way to start out the day!   If you ever want to get away without having to go too far-this is the place! They also host summer camp for youth of all ages. Our kids will be out there for day camp!Camp Gilead WomenCamp Gilead WomenCamp Gilead WomenCamp Gilead WomenCamp Gilead WomenCamp Gilead WomenCamp Gilead WomenCamp Gilead WomenCamp Gilead WomenCamp Gilead WomenCamp Gilead Women

Olympia Engagement | Greg&Heather

We met Greg and Heather in the wonderful town of Olympia for their engagement pictures. Although they live in Olympia, they’ve opted for a destination wedding at their vacation home in Chelan this summer. So to capture their love for both towns, we photographed their engagement pictures close to home.  It was fun walking around the dock and park getting to know them.  We are looking forward to their wedding later this summer!

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