Bari and Jimmy tied the knot in a unique interfaith outdoor museum and celebrated their marriage in a lively reception at the Ybor City Museum Garden in Tampa.

bride groom holding hands brick wall

The Details

Bride’s Name: Bari
Groom’s Name: Jimmy
Venue: Ybor City Museum Garden
Wedding Date: February 4, 2017
Bridal Gown Designer: Theia; purchased from Your Dream Bridal in Massachusetts
Florist: 2Birds Events
Photographer: Finny Hill Photography
Videographer: Brandon Kari Productions
Cake: Mini Doughnut Factory
Wedding Coordinator: Coral & Vine Event Design
Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Adrianna Papell, Aidan Mattox, J Kara, & Alex Evenings
Honeymoon: We’ll be traveling to Portugal and Spain in December 2017…couldn’t go right after the wedding because of tax season, and we wanted something else to look forward to once the wedding fun was over!

The Story

wedding gown hanging red backdrop

bride and bridesmaids hugging silk robes

bride getting ready in chair

bridesmaid helping bride get ready

flower girl holding shoe

barber shop sign

groom getting haircut

groomsman helping groom get ready

groom posing in white jacket black bow tie

groomsmen in black tuxes black bow ties

bride holding lush bouquet

bride posing in middle of road

ring bearer in tux

flower girl in poofy white gown

groom in white jacket waiting for first look

bride groom first look

bride groom holding hands

bride groom kissing during first look

lush green and burgundy bouquet

bride groom pose in front of wood door

bride groom smiling after ceremony

groom whispering in bride's ear

bride and groom petting their dogs

bride and groom holding dogs on leashes

bridal party walking down road

My husband and I got married at a little known Tampa venue this past February. In our opinion, The Ybor City Museum Garden is underutilized and underrated, which is a shame because it’s quite literally picture perfect, versatile, affordable, and a coveted, historic state landmark. Ybor City was founded in the 1880s and was populated by thousands of immigrants, mainly from Cuba, Spain, and Italy. It’s been known as an extremely unique and successful city since its inception and is probably best known for the hundreds of millions of cigars that were rolled annually in the factories. Downtown Tampa and its surrounding historic neighborhoods, like Ybor, have been successfully revived over some time, and we hang out there pretty often these days. There are breweries, pirate-themed bars, authentic deviled crab, the BEST paella around, live music, drag queens, cigars…what more could you want?

wedding sign on mirror

wedding guestbook papers

fun wedding program with illustrations

outdoor ceremony setup with chuppah

leafy arrangement tied to ceremony chair

reserved sign on ceremony chair

chuppah with white and pink fabric

jewish wedding ceremony cups and wine bottle

chuppah on sign

wedding guests watching ceremony

bride and groom talking with officiant

groom kissing bride's head

parents walking groom down aisle

groom hugging dad at altar

groom waiting at altar for bride

two ring bearers holding hands down aisle

ring bearers get to altar

flower girl ring bearer with wood sign

bride walking down aisle with parents

bride and groom holding hands at altar

ring ceremony

interfaith outdoor museum wedding

bride wiping tear ceremony

groom placing scarf over bride

bride groom under shawl

bride groom first kiss

groom smashing glass

bride signing chuppah

groom signing chuppah

Prior to getting engaged, we basically became professional wedding guests, attending 13 together in three years…so when we finally got engaged, we were more than ready for it to be our turn. When we started planning, we were having trouble finding local venues to accommodate our needs (interfaith wedding with close to 300 people invited) that weren’t completely overdone or ridiculously expensive, so when we came across a wedding at the Garden one night after dinner (right under our noses—about 10 minutes from our house) we were very surprised and very hopeful. We made a phone call, had a site visit, and booked it within one weekend; it was one of the best decisions made regarding our wedding.

My husband and I are each one of four siblings (I’m a twin, at that), and we’re both passionate, loud, and fun-loving (dubbed the lives of the party by our friends and family), so it wasn’t a surprise to anyone in our closest circles that we wanted a wedding that was big, FUN, and DIFFERENT than anything we’d experienced before. The Ybor City Museum Garden was equal parts unique, romantic, and practical, essentially enabling us to create that exact vibe. The majority of the elements of our wedding were that of a classic garden affair, but it was dotted with eclectic and quirky details, industrial cityscapes, and a WILD dance party at the reception. We just wanted to put our own twist on the classic ideas we loved.

black and white wedding directional signs

diy wedding seating chart

marble fountain

outdoor wedding ceremony in plaza greenery

long tables with greenery

long curvy tables with white tablecloths and candles

sweetheart table set up next to fountain

curved tables with greenery and pillar candles

diy coaster place card

doughnut bar setup

signature cocktail sign with dog cartoons

woman posing for caricature artist

fountain lit up at night

bride and groom holding hands father's toast

bride and groom feeding each other doughnuts

bride and groom posing outside museum

What were your favorite or most memorable aspects of your wedding day?

My favorite aspects of our wedding include the caricature artists we hired instead of a photo booth or related takeaway…our guests absolutely loved it; including our dogs in our first look with the help of a special pet photographer (portion of proceeds benefited local animal rescues); the linen used to cover the top of our Chuppah…it was my maternal grandmother’s; the Rabbi…because she’s my cousin :); trading wedding cake for mini doughnuts…Jimmy & I built the doughnut wall we used to display them; the 12-piece band we splurged on…who played light jazz during the cocktail hour and Fetty Wap during the reception; going full romantic glam for my bridal look but changing into ASOS high top sneakers after the ceremony; dedicating my bouquet to my mom instead of throwing it, since I’m the last of the four sisters to get hitched; and finally, the surprise Star Wars themed sendoff I planned for my self-proclaimed nerdy husband, complete with a visit from Yoda himself.

bride groom first dance

groom dancing with mom

father daughter dance

bride and groom toasting with friends

bride and groom lifted on chairs hora

groom with arms spread open

jazz band playing during wedding reception

bridesmaids laughing drinking reception

bride and friend dancing

guy in suspenders dancing at wedding

packed wedding dance floor

bridesmaid dancing

groom dipping bride dancing

wedding guests dancing on outdoor dance floor

bride singing on stage

Do you have any advice for future brides?

As far as advice to brides planning their own weddings, I’d say DON’T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF (which I wish I would have done less of), go with your gut instincts, and don’t do things just to please other people like in-laws, other vendors, etc. For those having big weddings, I highly recommend having a welcome party after the rehearsal dinner the night before (where all guests are invited—you don’t have to pay for anything, and there doesn’t need to be a host…you can just tell them where you’ll be hanging out after) in order to get some of the schmoozing out of the way so you are able to ENJOY more of your actual wedding reception and spend less time doing the formalities of going table to table. I also recommend you pick a few nights per week to NOT do anything wedding-planning related to take some mental breaks as you go through the process. ?

bride and groom kissing star wars sendoff


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