A Rustic, DIY Wedding at Camp Concordia in Gowen, Michigan

Johanna Barz (24 and a nurse technician and PA student) and Garrett Golke (22 and an environmental scientist) met at Camp Concordia in Gowen, MI in Su

Johanna Barz (24 and a nurse technician and PA student) and Garrett Golke (22 and an environmental scientist) met at Camp Concordia in Gowen, MI in Summer 2011 where Johanna was the camp nurse and Garrett was a camp counselor. When the summer was over, they dated long distance for three years before they got married. Garrett proposed to Johanna while hiking along a scenic reservoir with a photographer on site capturing the entire moment. They chose to have their wedding at the place where they first met, Camp Concordia. Not only did Camp Concordia have a special meaning for them, but it also provided the perfect setting. "We wanted an outdoor rustic wedding but we also wanted a chapel to get married in," Johanna says. The most meaningful moment of the wedding for them was the Christian foot washing ceremony that represented the self-sacrificing love in marriage. Johanna's favorite color is light yellow so their color palette was yellow and gray with rustic accents of burlap and twine. Flower arrangements were made with sunflowers, daisies and baby's breath. "I absolutely love sunflowers because they remind me of joy and happiness," Johanna says. Adding some DIY elements, Garrett created the centerpieces which were a mix of sunflowers and daisies with rustic mason jars and bottles on wooden slabs. Johanna and Garrett made sure their entire wedding day was consistent with their original themes of Christian and rustic elements.

Sheath Lace Wedding Dress with Long Train
After choosing the perfect yellow color, Johanna allowed her bridesmaids to choose their knee-length dresses.
Sunflower Boutonniere with Twine
Johanna always loved sunflowers and knew she wanted to incorporate them into her wedding. "I absolutely love sunflowers because they remind me of joy and happiness," she says.
Garrett wore a charcoal gray suit with a white tie and vest while his groomsmen wore the same tuxedos with yellow ties and vests.
Johanna and Garrett wanted to have an outdoor wedding but also wanted to stay true to their Christian faith by having a wedding in a chapel. Camp Concordia blended both settings by having an outdoor chapel.
Wooden Bible Verse Ceremony Accesory
Floating Sunflower and Daisy Ceremony Accesory
Johanna and Garret had their wedding at Camp Concordia where the beautiful outdoor setting provided the perfect backdrop. "The chapel overlooks the lake and was just such a gorgeous setting," Johanna says.
Instead of a unity candle or sand ceremony, Johanna and Garrett opted for a traditional foot washing ceremony. "Jesus washed his disciples feet as a sign of true love and servanthood," Johanna explains. "Marriage is very much the same. A self sacrificing love and serving one another in love."
Yellow and Charcoal Gray Wedding Party
Keeping with the rustic theme, place cards were held in the screen of a rustic door.
DIY Handwritten Honey Place Cards
Garrett created the rustic centerpieces with sunflowers and daisies in mason jars over wooden slabs.
Instead of traditional table numbers, Johanna and Garrett named tables after towns in Michigan and carved them into wooden slabs.
Sunflower Centerpiece in Mason Jar
Instead of simple advice cards, Johanna and Garrett's guests wrote on wooden blocks.
Daisy Centerpieces in Mismatched Bottles
Johanna and Garret gave guests packages of ingredients for making s'mores. At the end of the night, they had a bonfire where guests could enjoy their s'mores.
Wedding Cake with Burlap and Wooden Cake Topper