On a football Saturday in October, Kelli was at the Green Door Bar with Koepf family and friends to hear Star Farm, a local favorite band play. After glancing at the bar, he saw an angel in white (Stacey) who just like himself was wearing MSU apparel and in his words “sparkling like a diamond." After remembering someone once told him that he would never go talk to the prettiest girl at the bar, he boldly approached her. But his attempt failed as her “guard dog” sister Christine swept her away. He then approached her twice more that night and the third time the lights were on and the music was off. Kelli said, "you don't have to stop dancing when lights go out." He then proceed to drop it down to the floor slowly, which drew Christine's attention and she recognized Kelli who was business acquaintance. Christine grabs his arm while he is still giving his audition and says "Kelli McCardel?" Kelli responds "yes" and Christine looks at Stacey and grabs her arm too and says "STACEY you have to meet him he is a really nice guy." So guard dog finally allowed Stacey and Kelli to talk agreeing that he “was a good guy”. After a quick five minute presentation on himself, Kelli convinced Stacey to give him her number.....
After two weeks of nightly texting what Kelli refers to as, "pillow talk", Christine left on vacation. Kelli knew that Stacey’s “guard dog” was away and took full advantage of the situation by asking her on a date. He recommended three places and offered to drive. So they ended up at Tavern 109 and drove separate. Upon arrival Kelli was at the end of the bar ordering his Basil Hayden and receives a phone call from Stacey. So Kelli answers the phone hoping she wasn't cancelling and Stacey says "where are you"? Kelli replies "at the end of the bar" while he proceeds to turn around, she says, "so am I". With his confidence and excitement on the rise Kelli turns around and says "Hi". Stacey jumped a little surprised by her good decision on pulling this well dressed man out of a rough bar. Kelli welcomed her with a warm hug and signature Kelli kiss on the cheek before the two grabbed their table in the middle of the room. There they were surrounded by others noticing the intensity between them and as Stacey attempted to absorb Kelli's fire hose of information a note dropped on the table. Kelli turns to speak to the gentleman who dropped it and he was gone. Kelli opened up the note, read it, and proceeded to close the note and place it in his pocket. Kelli attempted to continue on with another topic and Stacey politely asked what the note said. Kelli stated " nothing", and with out hesitation Stacey said with a determined voice, "if you don't tell me what it says I am leaving". So Kelli reached into his pocket, pulled out the note, handed it to her, put his hands up, and hung his head low. Stacey read the note and started laughing out loud. The Note said, " Dude, she is beautiful, talk less, listen more. The voice of experience". The two continued to talk, laugh and Kelli asked many more questions. From that night on they were pretty much inseparable... and Stacey was in disbelief that she was falling for a 35 yr old man that lived in his parents basement... and Kelli was in disbelief that he had met the girl of his dreams so he better speed up and finish the house remodel.
Kelli and Stacey were headed up north for the 4th of July holiday to hang out with family and friends in Northern Michigan. The night before they left, Kelli asked Stacey to go on a paddle board ride with him when he got home. Due to an appointment she had previously set, she agreed but let him know that they only had 45 minutes. Kelli wasted no time getting out on the water. They headed out of the channel and over to a little sandbar in the middle of Scenic Lake. It was then that Kelli used the advice from the night they met, and asked questions to Stacey about the vacation. As she was busy telling him that they were ready to go, he bent down in water to place the ring in a clam shell found with his foot. With everything fitting together, Kelli let Stacey know there is only one more thing he had to do before they left. He pointed at the water and when she looked down Kelli was on one knee with the clam shell and she said yes to being Mrs McCardel!
Cousins David and Kate invited us down to Key West two years ago. They found out the island was similar to Nashville on the water and they fell in love. The laid back atmosphere, food and great weather brought them back during their search for wedding venues. Consequently, they settled on Key West and thought how great it would be to have their most favorite people join them and celebrate at their intimate wedding.
Key West was picture perfect for these two to say "I do". Congratulations to you and your families!
Photographer: Rachel E Ligon
Assistant Photographer: Jessica Paar Robb
Planner: Jen Perez Simply You
Wedding Dress: Morilee Blu Collection
Bridal Shoes: Badgley Mischka
Hair and Makeup: Studio Marie-Pierre
Ceremony Officiant: Uncle Rusty
Ceremony: Fort Zachary Taylor
Reception Music: Chris Thomas Music