In her efforts to help a friend with his online personal ad, Bonnie Graves was inadvertently introduced to Adrian Sexton over the internet. Adrian had negotiated a business deal with the personals company, and they, in turn, made him a “Featured Bachelor,” which landed his California profile on Bonnie's laptop screen in New York. Clearly holding the upper hand, Bonnie began a long distance email rapport with Adrian that ultimately led to dinner in Los Angeles. Needless to say, this long awaited face-to-face meeting was all they hoped it would be, and Bonnie later moved to join Adrian in LA.
Two years later, in a plan so thoughtful his friends are concerned about the standard he has set, Adrian asked Bonnie to be his wife in the romantic privacy of their own home. He made sure, however, that the proposal coincided with her 30th birthday dinner at Los Angeles’ Getty Museum, because it would allow Bonnie the chance to share her happiness with her parents who were attending the event from out of town. Being able to celebrate this momentous occasion with her family made it all the more special for everyone, “My mom and dad so appreciated being there in person as opposed to hearing about it over the phone.”
Bonnie and Adrian embarked on their wedding planning adventure with one complex goal in mind - to color their celebration with the multitude of interests and people most important to them. They were successful thanks to their creativity and unconditional support of each other’s vision. Providing the framework for their event was the location, the Sundance Resort, the epitome of their wish to be married in the mountains and take advantage of the glorious fall foliage. Filling in the details was their diversely talented family, a collection of musicians and artists, whose generous personal touches, from invitation design to entertainment, resulted in creating an atmosphere of character and intimacy. And with such clever elements as a wine tasting bar that paired with the autumn buffet and save-the-date cards that resembled movie tickets, Bonnie and Adrian also infused their respective careers as a sommelier and a studio executive into their wonderfully individual affair.
Beneath a simple arbor of vibrant fall leaves, Bonnie and Adrian were married by a dear friend of the Graves family. Loved ones from both families participated in the ceremony by reading personal passages, performing songs and honoring family members who could not attend the gathering. Bonnie and Adrian also read touching and humorous letters to one another that forecast their life together in fifty years. Regarding the tearful response, “I think people were moved by the seriousness of our intentions and our obvious excitement about growing old together,” says Bonnie.
The celebration’s union of personal and aesthetic detail was just as evident during the reception. A significant part of Bonnie’s childhood, as well as her relationship with Adrian, was her love for touring national parks. As soon as guests entered the reception, they were greeted by National Parks Passport books, stamped with the couple’s wedding date from Utah’s Mt. Timpanogas visitor center. Each book was wrapped and marked with a golden aspen leaf, a unifying motif of their event, and served as both a seating card and favor in one. The variety of music, the candy bar in honor of Adrian’s sweet tooth and the architectural wedding cake made to resemble the Getty Museum were perfect reflections of the couple’s personalities and their whimsical relationship as best friends who know each other better than anyone else.
But nothing spoke truer about Bonnie and Adrian than the thread of nature and family that wove its way throughout their celebration. On their first anniversary, the couple plans to return to the beauty of Sundance to commemorate their marriage by, once again, thinking about their life to come. They will bury a time capsule of mementos from their wedding including the letters they read to each other during their ceremony. It will remain at the base of the mountains until their 50th wedding anniversary when they will return to unearth it, undoubtedly surrounded by a new generation.