Don Hughes – Officiant Extraordinaire

When getting married, your officiant plays a large role in the event. Here at the Holladay House Bed and Breakfast, we are proud to have Don Hughes perform ceremonies. Background Don has lived in this area all his life, taking some time to move away, and then return. He was born in the neighboring town of Gordonsville, was married at the local Methodist church, and at one time had the keys to the county court house, sheriff station, and local service station. His roots are deep within the community and he has a sense of humor that will make anyone smile. Don turned 74 this past year and has been married over 50 years to his wife, Lillian. Don loves to tease about the first time he met Lillian: “I met my wife in my bedroom” he says with a silly grin across his face.  The truth behind the “scandalous” story: Somehow Lillian ended up at his parents’ house before a local dance in 1962. Don was in his bedroom studying and his mother was giving Lillian a tour of the house. He remembers he was sitting at his desk in his room when his mother introduced them to each other. He finally got around to asking her to marry him in 1965. How’s it going?  “We are both Scorpio and haven’t killed each other yet.” Working many jobs over the years, Don has been a paint store owner, a florist, a caterer, an EMT (where he helped birth a few local babies), and a funeral director.  As Don puts it, he “takes care of people from the womb...

Why Elope?

It’s a big decision to go small for your wedding day!  There are a ton of reasons folks elope: * Family is spread out all over the USA/world and the logistics of getting everyone together would challenge the most seasoned international event planner. * One or both of the spouses are in the military. * The bride or groom is actually quite shy and doesn’t want to be put “on stage”. * The idea of all the detailed planning gives the bride and groom hives. * Saving $$ for the honeymoon or a big investment, like a house! * Only two opinions and no family drama to manage. * The couple believes exchanging wedding vows is a moment to be shared just between the two of them. My husband, Sam, and I choose to elope in 2001 when the trend was secret scandalous elopement or big fat wedding.  So, we went through a lot of the emotions involved with choosing an elopement-style wedding even before “small” was a thing. We understand and believe: 1) going small is a tough decision to make and 2) a wedding of any size is a meaningful life event that should reflect both the bride and groom’s desires. For us, our choice was a Virginia Inn even before thoughts of owning one entered our heads. If you think eloping is what you want to do, there are many ways of going about it. Here are three blogs I hope help you plan your perfect day: 1. Make sure you understand how to elope. 2. Research the cost to elope. 3. Celebrate your elopement or...

How Much Does It Cost to Elope?

The cost of eloping can be under $100 and it can be over $10,000. It really depends on what YOU want your special day to include. Here are some helpful hints from the Holladay House Bed and Breakfast.  Once you know the answers to these questions, you should be able to start planning your elopement. Understand what is included in the price of the package * What does the facility take care of?  What if you want them to take care of everything?  What if you want to customize and be more hands on? * Does the package include the officiant? Sometimes finding the officiant is the hardest part – is that taken care of?  Does he/she allow customization of the ceremony if you want to include your own vows or traditions? * Do you want to include guests? Some facilities see an elopement as just two people as opposed to a small wedding. If you want guests, including a four-legged member of your family, make sure your facility allows it. Here at Holladay House we can have 2-20 people and your pet. Frilly Details (that can cost extra) * What can the bride and groom wear? Ladies may wear anything from full length bridal gowns to colorful dramatic dresses to simple day dresses they can wear time and again!  Gentlemen may wear anything from business casual to suit + tie to a tux.  Wear what will make you the most comfortable on YOUR day! Need some ideas? Check out our photo album here. * Cakes?  You bet!  Engraved tableware?  Sure!  Special items, like unity candles?  Absolutely!  Color scheme? ...

How to Elope

So, you’ve made the big decision to go small! Congratulations! That is the first step in preparing for your dream day. But… now what do you do? Getting married in Virginia is quite easy! You need a license, an officiant and a location. Follow our check list on how to elope to make planning your special day easier. License You will need to visit a Virginia Courthouse to get your marriage license.  You must both be present, have your photo IDs, and payment for the fee ($30 in most courthouses). As most don’t take check or credit card, please bring cash. You don’t need a blood test, you don’t need a witness, and you don’t need your divorce papers (if applicable). Before you go to the Courthouse, check the hours of operation, especially around Federal holidays. Some courthouses require the name of the officiant who will be marrying you, but most do not. For a comprehensive list visit: http://www.vdh.state.va.us/vital_records/marry.htm.  Your license is valid that day for 60 days. Officiant You must be married by an officiant that is licensed by the Virginia Court. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have someone unlicensed perform the ceremony – you just need to have your licensed officiate step in at the end to say the legal phrase that makes you official. The officiate takes care of signing the license and sending it back to the courthouse as well. Your Best Friend Brian, Uncle Larry or Aunt Martha can do the rest (PS: Holladay House works a great officiant, Don Hughes.) Location You can almost elope at any location. Your backyard, at a...
The Best Place to Elope in Virginia

The Best Place to Elope in Virginia

Eloping or having a small wedding isn’t something that should be taken lightly. It is still an important day in your life that you will cherish for the rest of your life. The best place to elope or have a small wedding in Virginia is Holladay House Bed and Breakfast in Orange, VA – Voted as one of USA Today’s top hotel fireplaces in the USA to get married. Personalized experience As of the beginning of 2016, Sharon at the Holladay House B&B has helped 196 couples say “I Do” and not a single ceremony was identical to another. You want someone who really cares about your day as much as you do and someone who understands all the reasons you chose to “go small” — like an old friend you don’t have to explain “the whole story” to because they know you so well. With a smaller event, little details mean a lot and stand out more. Sharon and Sam believe that just because a couple decides to “go small” that doesn’t mean they have to let go of including important details, and people or pets, for such an important life event. That’s why we encourage customization and allow for some guests to be included at no extra charge. All-Inclusive Elopements The Holladay House has made it easy to have an elopement. Whether it is just the two of you or a small group of 20 of your closest family and friends, our customized all-inclusive packages include what you need. Our Traditional Elopement package is $599 (plus tax) and includes: • A large and relaxing fireplace suite •...