Last weekend I visited West Charleston, VT for the wedding of a childhood friend. Until last week the only weddings I’d been part of were those of my parents’ friends and aunts and uncles. Now, quite suddenly, weddings within my cohort are taking my schedule by storm. This Vermont wedding was the first of four I’ll attend this summer alone, and everyone getting married in these weddings is within my age-range. I have been both honored and anxious to be included in everyone’s celebrations. It’s admittedly been a little challenging going from zero to sixty, and to transition from never having glimpsed a wedding registry to navigating the world of shower and wedding gifts, weekender travel details, and resisting over-committing. What I will say is that this wedding in Charleston was an incredible experience to kick start many years to come of wedding festivities. Vermont is gorgeous year-round, but the beautiful blue skies in combination with the intense green of the leaves and the clear mountain air provided an excellent little window into Charleston summers, and the perfect stage for a remarkable wedding.
Things that stood out to me in my short time in Charleston:
1. It doesn’t take very long to get from northeast Massachusetts to the northernmost part of Vermont. The day before the wedding I drove from Newburport, MA to West Charleston, VT (which is very close to Canada), and the drive took less than four hours. Hypothetically it could have been a day trip.
2. Eden Ice Cider is particularly delicious. The groom’s parents own Eden Orchards (where the wedding took place in West Charleston), and are the proprietors of Eden Ice Cider. I’m no cider expert, but I dabble and will occasionally get Angry Orchard cider or Magners. Until the wedding I hadn’t heard of Eden Ice Cider, but I loved it and will absolutely go out of my way to find it again. Eden Orchard was also responsible for a beverage at the wedding called Orleans Herbal aperitif cider, which was exquisite.
3. I may have completely missed the mark with this one, but I drove around with a friend for a while looking for coffee shops and couldn’t find anything obvious, so we ended up getting coffee from 7-Eleven. We did, however, find a cute place to have breakfast in Newport called Brenda’s Homestyle Cookin’. The prices here were refreshingly low compared to breakfast in NYC and Boston, and the food was tasty as well.
4. Apparently Newport (right near West Charleston), is a popular place to stay for skiers because of its proximity to Jay Peak and other popular ski mountains. I stayed with a friend at Newport City Inn and Suites, but I also know a handful of people who camped and really enjoyed it. The hotel was reasonably priced and very comfortable, and featured a pool and hot tub that we unfortunately missed out on.
5. There is something so personal and magical about a wedding held on family property, and I loved that about this particular wedding. The setting was incredibly intimate, and the fact that the ceremony took place on land belonging to the groom’s parents was really charming. The bride, whom I’ve known forever, and contributions by her creative family, could be felt in every element of the ceremony and its design as well. Being welcomed onto the property felt like being ushered into the lives of both families, which is exactly how a wedding should feel.
I had a fantastic time in Vermont and was blown away by the beauty of the bride and her groom. It was fantastic to catch up with friends and to take a moment to escape the chaos of NYC, and Vermont was the perfect place for it. And now, onto the next!