A trip to Cedar Creek lodges for Sarah and Harrison’s wedding
It was a fabulous sunny Friday in February (that’s a mouthful) when I set off to photograph Sarah and Harrison’s wedding at Cedar Creek lodges. Their original wedding was another which had fallen victim to 2020, also known as the year COVID killed ALL wedding plans, so it was super-exciting to finally be sharing their day with them in 2021.
The path to Cedar Creek Lodges is not always clear. Or dry. Or safe.
So, I headed off from my north Brisbane home, playlist ready and directions safely entered in the GPS. I enjoy driving to new places each week for weddings and this time was no different. I’m the queen of multi-tasking so I often use drive-time to catch up on calls, listen to podcasts or just belt out a few tunes, safe in the knowledge my GPS will tell me where to go.
But this day she didn’t. Oh no, this day my GPS tried to send me up the wrong side of a mountain, through flooded creeks and cut off roads. In hindsight, I should’ve stopped when I saw the ‘ROAD CLOSED’ sign. But I was so busy belting out some mad tunes, I wasn’t sure I’d even seen the correct sign.
However, 20 minutes later I came across a flooded road (we’d had a full-on week of rain) and there was NO way I was taking my chances with that. So, with quite a few obscenities and a slight detour, I turned around a sped my way along the highway to find a safe route to Cedar Creek lodges.
Finding Cedar Creek Lodges – Look for the giant dinosaur
My GPS was not my friend that day and it refused to deliver me to the exact location of Cedar Creek lodges. It took me up the mountain, back down the mountain and to the Skywalk which incidentally is right next door.
However, if you’re visiting Cedar Creek Lodges, the easiest way to find it is to look for the dinosaur! Yes, forget your cantankerous GPS and use your eyeballs to find the giant yellow dinosaur outside Thunderbird Park.
Because THAT is where Cedar Creek Lodges are.
Arriving at the venue
Well, after a few false starts I finally arrived at the venue, which I must admit, is amazing. The quaint little cottages are set on 320 acres of rainforest on the Gold Coast hinterland on Tambourine Mountain. It has an undercover outdoor area which is perfect for wedding ceremonies. And the rainforest backdrop makes for gorgeous wedding photos.
I mean, how stunning is this for a ceremony?
Sarah and Harrison’s wedding day
A few things had changed since Sarah and Harrison’s original wedding plans. The number of guests had dropped significantly due to travel restrictions but most exciting was the news that Sarah and Harrison were pregnant and planned to do a gender reveal after the ceremony.
They were also breaking with tradition and doing a ‘first look’ before the wedding. For those of you who haven’t heard of this before, it’s when the groom sees the bride before the ceremony. It’s always fun to photograph a first look as you can capture the groom’s reaction without any distractions.
And how sweet is Harrison’s first look at his gorgeous bride-to-be?
Soon it was wedding time
We managed a few sneaky wedding photos before the ceremony too. As the forecast threatened rain we thought it best to grab a few photos, just in case Mother Nature decided not to play nice.
After all the rescheduling, re-planning and surprises, Sarah and Harrison didn’t care about breaking tradition. They were just thrilled to finally be getting married.
I mean, after 2020, what more can a couple ask for?
So, here’s a little preview of their fabulous Cedar Creek lodges wedding and keep on scrolling to read about their real life romance.
And if you’re getting married and like my style, get in touch here.
How did you meet?
Harrison – We met through Tinder. It was love at first sight – I even gave Sarah a super-like!
Any funny stories about that meeting?
Harrison – The first time we met was at a house party of one of my friends. I was too nervous to speak to Sarah for most of the night, but she became quick friends with everyone else there. She must have liked me though. Look where we wound up!
Where did you get engaged?
At the cherry blossom festival in Meguro, Japan.
How long have you been together?
We’ve been together for four years this year.
Why did you choose Alison Cooke Photography to photograph your wedding?
We got a glowing recommendation from the mother of the groom.
Alison – Judy and her hubby Gwynn used to run a wedding venue in north Brisbane. Whenever I photographed a wedding at Judy’s we’d always share a good old chat. It was lovely to catch up with Judy and Gwynn again.
How was your experience with Alison as your photographer?
Alison has kept a relationship with us throughout the uneasy times of covid-19 and having to reschedule our original wedding date. And then we completely changed our photography package. She was approachable and kind through these times, and excited for us when our needs changed, and we shared the news of our pregnancy.
During the wedding Alison was professional, captured everything we asked for and more. Alison was also very accommodating with the extra requests we had for our wedding, and the special photo ideas we had to include our unborn baby in our special day.
How was Cedar Creek Lodges for your wedding venue?
Cedar Creek Lodges was an incredible place to get married. The staff were very accommodating at the reception and we felt very well cared for. Plus, the setting in the rainforest was just what we were after.
What was the one thing you just had to have for your wedding day?
Sarah’s random food cravings for strawberry Freddos. Mum was to the rescue!
How did you go about planning your wedding & did you have any help?
Like most couples at the moment, our wedding has been interrupted, changed around and re-planned due to covid-19.
The wedding we started out with and the wedding we ended up with were completely different. Though all the organizing and change was stressful, we were able to make the day ours.
What tips or ideas would you pass onto future brides?
Try not to stress too much – have fun with it! The day will be over in a blink of an eye, but you will remember the laughs, and the photos!
What was something unique about your wedding?
We recently found out that Sarah was pregnant, so we did the gender reveal shortly after the ceremony. It was a really nice way to include our future son in the event and celebrate the creation of our little family.
Did you honeymoon?
We continued to stay on at Mount Tamborine – it’s a beautiful area with some amazing sights and tranquillity.
Photographer: Alison Cooke Photography
Ceremony and Reception Venue: Cedar Creek Lodges
Hair and Makeup: Face it, You’re beautiful
Jeweller: Michael Hill
Celebrant: Jamie Eastgate – Brisbane City Celebrants
If you’re searching for a fun, awesome photographer for your Cedar Creek lodges wedding, drop me a line here.
And if you’d like to view more of my weddings, head over to the wedding gallery here.