An Outdoor Animal Inspired Wedding at Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens in Santa Barbara, California

Ashley Porter (27 and an attorney) and Cameron Boulton (27 and an engineer) met while they were undergrads at the University of California, Santa Barb

Ashley Porter (27 and an attorney) and Cameron Boulton (27 and an engineer) met while they were undergrads at the University of California, Santa Barbara. They went on their first date at Cold Spring Tavern up in the foothills and instantly realized a connection between them. The couple moved to Sacramento and took a trip to Antigua in the Caribbean. On the second night of their trip, Ashley and Cameron went hiking on a hill that revealed an amazing view of the beach. When they got to the top during the sunset, Cameron got down on one knee and proposed to Ashley with a diamond ring in a recycled platinum setting. The couple had their wedding at the Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens to reflect their love for animals in the city where they fell in love. They had their ceremony and reception on a hilltop at the venue, overlooking the panoramic views of the Santa Barbara Riviera. The color palette of orange and purple decorated the wedding details, from the flower centerpieces at the reception to the flower girl’s dresses. Tables were marked with zoo animal sketches for seating assignments, and guests enjoyed feeding the giraffes and watching the flamingos while exploring the grounds at the zoo.

Ashley wore a ivory strapless wedding dress Pronovias Pelicano on her wedding day.
Ivory Wedding Dress, Detailed Back
Walking Down Outdoor Aisle at Zoo
The ceremony wedding arch was decorated with purple orchid arrangement.
“The ceremony and reception were entirely outdoors on the hilltop overlooking the surrounding Santa Barbara Riviera and ocean,” says Ashley.
First Kiss Under Draped Wedding Arch
The couple stood with their three flower girls, who were dressed in purple and orange dresses.
Intimate Shot of Ashley and Cameron
“The outdoor setting coupled with the zoo reflected us perfectly,” says Ashley. “Guests loved exploring the zoo, feeding the giraffes and mingling with the flamingos.”
Walking in Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Ashley and Cameron Walking in Zoo
Tropical Reception Venue at Zoological Gardens
“The flowers we chose were tropical with orchids, lilies, kangaroo paw, bird of paradise, heliconia, ginger, protea, accents of succulents, eucalyptus and snapdragons,” says Ashley.
The simple white guest book was placed on a white dressed table near the table marker that was identified by a specific animal.
“Our wedding cake was a simple three-tiered square cake with smooth white buttercream frosting and decorated with orchids. The bottom tier was chocolate marble cake, the second tier was red velvet, and the top tier was pure chocolate white cream filling.”
“Our first dance was specially choreographed just for us and something we practiced for the weeks leading up to the wedding,” says Ashley.