You probably saw the amazing Bend-area wedding photo that lit up Facebook after the Two Bulls Fire erupted over the weekend, but the story behind it is even more heart-warming.
April and Michael Wolber of Portland are your average newlyweds, with a not-so-average wedding story.
On Saturday, just hours before their wedding, two fires filled the skies with smoke as it moved south toward Bend.
April said she was calm, initially: “My girlfriends did a really good job at keeping me calm. They didn’t even tell me about the fire.”
The ceremony had begun, Michael was waiting at the altar, and that’s when disaster struck.
“They pulled up and said, ‘A mandatory evacuation -- you guys have to leave right now,” recalled Kelly Lounden, Rock Springs Guest Ranch wedding coordinator.
But after some convincing, the firefighters allowed the ceremony to continue.
Fifteen minutes later, they were married.
Then, April said the caterers at Blue Bite calm;y started the move.
“She just came up to me and said, ‘Where should we go?’ And I said, ‘Drake Park’ -- and she said ,‘Okay, we’ll see you there!” said Janie Thornton of Blue Bite.
“We had to get everything that has taken us hours to unpack and get it to the van in 15 minutes,” she added.
Some chairs were left at the site during the ordeal, but they were given special permission two days later to return and pick up the rest of their things.
One short hour after the ceremony, the newlyweds were greeted by a warm reception at Drake Park.
“The applause of our amazing friends and family -- it was the coolest swing of emotions. We wouldn’t change a thing,” Michael said.
Their magical story wouldn’t have been possible without the help of everyone involved.
“If they hadn’t reacted in the calm fashion that they had, the day would have been completely different. The amazing photo wouldn’t have happened,” said the Wolbers.
As for that amazing photo, it spread like wildfire.. from coast to coast, but they are more concerned with the real wildfire:
“Bend is our most favorite place in the world," April said. "We don’t want to make light of what’s happening. It was an amazing day for us, but we are still concerned about this forest fire that is blazing out there.”
The Wolbers are now in Mexico for their honeymoon. They would like to thank everyone involved for making it the best day ever.
Rock Springs Guest Ranch - http://www.rocksprings.com/rockspringsweddings/
Blue Bite Catering - http://www.bleubitecatering.com/
Josh Newton Photography- http://joshnewton.com/
Dave Clemens DJ- https://www.facebook.com/dave.clemens?fref=ts