Your Guide to the Perfect Summer Elopement in Vermont

Eloping is one of the most intimate ways to begin your marriage, usually including only the couple, a photographer, and an officiant. Since Vermont is filled with some of the most breathtaking nature (Yes, we’re biased!)  in the country, it is an obvious choice for couples looking to elope surrounded by the wilderness. Suppose you’re dreaming of a summer elopement in Vermont. In that case, you’ll want to continue reading for our top tips, as well as some amazing images from Emily and Matt’s relaxing, yet adventurous elopement, with the help of Kate Seymour Photography

Eloping in Vermont: The Essential Details

When planning your special day – no matter how big or small- one important item to factor in is your marriage license. Live somewhere else but wanting to elope in Vermont? You are able to obtain a marriage license from any town or city clerk in the state. If you and your partner both live in Vermont, the marriage license must be picked up at the town in which you reside. (At the time of writing this post, the cost is $80) The marriage license is valid for sixty days from the date that it is first issued, and if the wedding is not performed by an authorized person within that time frame – it is considered to be void. 

How or where you elope is where the fun comes in! An elopement can take place anywhere your heart desires, whether it’s a picturesque mountaintop, a serene beach, or even the comfort of your own backyard- and the celebration can be as intimate as an officiant and the couple or include a few family or friends. Some couples even ask a family member or friend to become a temporary officiant for their big day. If you are interested in going this route, Vermont allows anyone over the age of 18 to become a temporary officiant for your wedding, for the cost of $100. (Fun fact: some wedding professionals, like photographers for example, are officiants too, like Kate Seymour Photography! This makes your elopement even more streamlined and intimate). After the wedding ceremony, the officiant must input the date and location, sign your license, and deliver it back to the clerk’s office where it was purchased within 10 days. After that, you are officially married!

Matt and Emily's Adventurous Elopement

Originally, Matt and Emily were going to get married in Boston in August of 2020, but their plans shifted due to the pandemic. Like so many others, the couple held off for a bit until their original wedding date was creeping up on their calendar. Matt and Emily decided that they would like to elope in Vermont. Although they had never visited the location of their elopement before, they took a suggestion from Kate Seymour to get married on the shores of Lake Willoughby in the Northeast Kingdom.  (A stunning location we recommend everyone visits at least once!)

Parts of the wedding were hosted across the lake and the state forest, giving the couple ample time to explore the place where they would be married. Instead of choosing to get married by the lake, which would have been busy in the peak summer months, Emily and Matt decided to have their first look and ceremony at a nearby river. They dressed themselves in the surrounding woods and had their first look at a trail that led down to some falls. Despite the wedding being last minute, the couple looked absolutely amazing, and both of their outfits were perfect for summer in Vermont! We love how Emily kept shorter natural nails while incorporating pearl nail art for the occasion. 

A Scenic Day Full of Hiking and A Sunset

Following their peaceful and exuberant ceremony by the falls, the couple took a scenic drive to the lake. On the way, they stopped at a meadow ornamented with purple flowers for a few more photographs before heading to Mount Pisgah. The couple changed into their hiking clothes for a brief hike to the first overlook where they witnessed sweeping views of the lake and forest. Finally, they made it to the lake just in time to witness the sunset painting the Vermont sky in shades of light pink and orange. Since the weather remained warm, the couple and their officiant decided to take a brief dip in the lake to end their beautiful night. Their adventurous spirit was personified by Emily and Matt choosing to run into the water in their wedding outfits. The draping of Emily’s dress looked even more gorgeous floating atop the clear lake water. 

Vermont is the perfect place for outdoor-loving couples to elope, regardless of the season, there is something for everyone. If you’re interested in a Vermont elopement, Kate Seymour has a ton of inspiration on her website that can help with planning your perfect day. Congratulations Emily and Matt, we’re happy to see that your last-minute wedding turned out beautifully! 

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