The Wedding Carnival

Today I am so excited to share with you photos from the Wedding Carnival! To be honest it was a very frustrating post to do because I have so many wonderful photos and I think I might blow up your computer if I tried to share them all in one post!!! So what I will be doing is sharing an overview of the entire carnival today in photos (and there is a lot of them) and over the next week I will break it down into sections (decorations, food, etc.) and post more photos and information, resources etc., in those posts. So, as you look at the photos if you have specific questions for me please leave them in the comments and I will try to answer them in the follow up posts I do.

I began working on the carnival soon after I knew about the engagement last March. I spent the next four and a half months having so much fun and pouring my heart and soul into the wedding carnival. It was so much fun and I loved every minute of it.   It was a total DIY wedding thanks to all the creative efforts of my husband  and friends.  Jim spent the last four months working  building booths, hanging lights, and tending the garden in every free moment.  I have some amazingly creative friends who spent uncountable number of hours helping me too!  I am also grateful for my great group of friends who showed up at my door on Friday to help set up and those who worked behind the scenes that evening making sure everything ran perfectly so I could enjoy the evening.

It was truly a group effort of amazing people who love and care about Clark and Jessica (and me).

I owe  my friends big time.

I am a firm believer that life is in the details and I so agree with this quote by John Wooden:

It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.

I love focusing on and spending time on the details and I hope that will come through in the pictures I am sharing.

All the wonderful photos were taken by talented friend and photographer Megan Elle Photography.

So welcome to our Wedding Carnival!

Wedding Carnival
The beautiful bride and groom.
Wedding Carnival

The new and improved Wilkes Family!

Wedding Carnival
Wedding Carnival
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Wedding Carnival There was lots to eat!
Wedding Carnival
Wedding Carnival

Wedding Carnival
Wedding Carnival
Wedding CarnivalI scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!

Wedding Carnival

Carnival Food is fun!  Hot Dogs, BBQ Pork Sliders, Mac & Cheese and Curly Fries!
Wedding Carnival

We didn’t do the traditional wedding cake.  Instead we did a doughnut cake!  The cake topper made by my friend Meg was one of my favorite parts of the carnival!!
Wedding Carnival

Wedding Carnival

You couldn’t have a carnival without games so we had plenty of those!
Wedding Carnival
Wedding CarnivalAnd what would a carnival be without a balloon man!
Wedding Carnival
And there was a Photo Booth too!
Wedding Carnival
Wedding Carnival

Some of the best money we spent was on a live band!  They were amazing and added so much to the atmosphere of the carnival.  If you are in the Portland/Vancouver area I highly recommend the band 24/7.
Wilkes Carnival
We danced and danced until we had to stop because of the noise ordinance!!
Wedding Carnival
Wedding Carnival

The only thing that Jim gave me a hard time on in regards to the carnival was a dance floor.  He didn’t think we needed one and I did.  After months of searching I was able to find one to rent for a reasonable price.  The week before the carnival it fell through.  Not one to be defeated easily I talked Cali and her friend Hannah into building me one!  It turned out wonderful and it was perfect.  Jim even admitted after the carnival was over that I was right – the dance floor was great!! (If you are in the Portland area and want to rent a dance floor – call me!!)

It is hard to pick a highlight of the evening as it was just one magical moment after another but I have to admit that the Flash Mob we did was pretty amazing! Cali, Tessa and Hannah choreographed it and then enlisted the participation of our neighbors and friends! We did it when the band took a break and used the song “Call Me Maybe.”  Cali introduced what she told the crowd was a lipsync of this song as it is what Jessica said to Clark the first time she met him.  They began their lip sync and then groups of neighbors who were scattered through the crowd began to join in – it was great!!
Wedding CarnivalThe crowd loved it!
Wedding Carnival

And so did the bride and groom.  We even got them to join in at the end.

Wedding Carnival

I think a flashmob may have just become a new tradition at all Wilkes’ weddings in the future!! It was a blast!!!  I can now cross that one off the Bucket List but I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

Then the sun began to set and our backyard turned into a magical fairyland thanks to the hundreds and hundreds of feet of lights that Jim had strung through the yard.  It was truly magical. Wedding CarnivalThe best part of the evening was of course celebrating the new bride and groom.
Wedding Carnival

It was so amazing to be able to share it with so many of our dear family and friends.
As I looked out over the yard and saw everyone laughing, eating, dancing and enjoying themselves my heart was so full.  Wedding CarnivalIt was a perfect moment in time.  Just what I had hoped for.

Wedding Carnival

For more details check out:

The Wedding Carnival}The Food Part One

The Wedding Carnival}The Food Part Two

The Wedding Carnival}Decorations

The Wedding Carnival}Carnival Games

The Wedding Carnival}Music, Dancing and a Flash Mob
The Wedding Carnival}The Bride and Groom

Post shared at:*Lil Luna*Southern Lovely*Trendy Thirty Handmade Days * Tidy Mom*Six Sisters Stuff *Whipperberry*504 Main*We Are that Family* Creations by Kara*Sugar and Dots*The 36th Avenue* Family Ever After*Be Different, Act Normal*Tatertots & Jello*Six Sisters Stuff*Lolly Jane*Positively Splendid*Tip Junkie


Leigh Anne
Hi – I’m Leigh Anne! I have been a homebased mom for 30 years since my first baby boy was born! I love working with women and helping to inspire them to achieve their goals and dreams while still maintaining motherhood and family as their number one priority. I blog about everything I enjoy – creating treats and meals in my kitchen, spending time in my garden, entertaining and party planning, reading, self improvement and tips and ideas on style and fashion.
Leigh Anne
Leigh Anne

Latest posts by Leigh Anne (see all)


  1. says

    Holy cow Leigh Anne, I’m so inspired by your amazing creativity! This is just so fun. I’m only sorry I did not get to see it in person. Wow!

    Warmly, Michelle
    PS – Do you free hand all those beautiful chalk board signs??? If you have any tips about how you make them look so fabulous, please share!

  2. says

    WOW, this is absolutely magical! Just discovered it from the post at Kara’s Party Ideas, and I’m completely in love. This is the very best kind of backyard wedding, full of beauty, family, friends, and FUN. Spectacularly done! I’d love to post about it on the Tikkido/Tradewind Tiaras blog, with your permission.

  3. Lucy says

    Hi Leigh Anne, the whole thing looks amazing. Could you tell me where you got the vinyl/nylon skirting for the games tables? I’d really appreciate it. Thanks Lucy

  4. Carly says

    Hello, I’m hoping you could tell me where I could buy the image from your lemonade sign. We would love to use it for a little kid carnival that we are having and I can’t seem to find anything similar- this one would be perfect! Seriously- this event is SO CUTE and PERFECT!
    Thank you so much!

  5. tracy says

    Hi! Thank you for sharing your wonderful pictures!! Can you give me any details about your candy table sign, like what materials were used or how it was made? thank you so much!!!

    • says

      Glad you enjoyed the pictures. We made the candy sign from those brown craft letters they sell at the craft store and just cut the top off of them and then painted them and put holes in the letter for the lights to come through. They are then mounted on some heavy cardboard type material.

      • Kay says

        This wedding was AMAZING!!!!! I wish I lived in your area; I would rent EVERYTHING!!!!!! I am working on building the cotton candy stand, for my son’s first birthday!! :-) Please tell me where you found the cardboard material behind the words Cotton Candy. Thanks!!!!

  6. Caron says

    I am getting married and we are having a vintage carnival themed reception too. I just found your blog (thank you pinterest). Any advice on running games and a wedding reception at the same time? Any chance you are selling any of the wonderful decorations? Thanks!

    • says

      I had a couple of teenagers man the game area – they had a great time. I didn’t do tickets or anything like that and just had a big bowl of prizes people could take what they wanted. I do rent many of our carnival decorations if you are in the Portland area!


  1. […] And then along the woodland path in the garden. Reminds me of a secret garden. Such a beautiful bride! Our dance floor was also a great place for some photos of our new and improved family. Then the crazy siblings! And the cute new sisters. And the happy mom and dad! This is the last and final post in a series of Wedding Carnival posts.  Here is a list of previous posts: Carnival Pictorial can be found here […]

  2. […] It was a good summer.  A busy summer but a good one.  We are fortunate to have wonderful neighbors, neighbors we love and enjoy spending time with.  To celebrate the end of summer we decided to hold one last outdoor get together under the lights.  We have yet to take down the wonderful lights we put up for the Wedding Carnival.  […]

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