Welcome the newest member of Tahoe Unveiled, Meredith Richmond. A seasoned wedding officiant, Meredith creates incredibly beautiful and personalized ceremonies for an unforgettable wedding. Being a Lake Tahoe native and living in Truckee, she has a deep reverence for the wild beauty of her surroundings. We can assure you that Meredith will be the best addition to your Lake Tahoe wedding. Find out a little more about Meredith in our interview below.
Photo: Chelsea Jean Photography
Tell us a bit about yourself and your company.
It’s an absolute honor and privilege to be a part of couples’ wedding ceremonies. As a wedding officiant I lead couples through the process of developing their customized wedding ceremony that expresses who they are and tells their unique love story.
How and when did you decide to become a wedding officiant?
Years ago I was asked a few times to perform a few of my friends’ wedding ceremonies. I truly loved the experiences, though at that time I didn’t think about offering officiant services commercially. Then a couple of years later shortly after moving to Maui, I became friends with a woman who was in the wedding industry. I shared that I love performing ceremonies, and she immediately got so excited to hear this. She believed that there was a huge niche for an officiant with my style and approach. This conversation led me to begin my officiant business in Maui. Within just 3 years I had the opportunity to perform over 250 ceremonies.
Photo: Jana Dillon Photography
What’s your favorite part of the job?
That’s a tough one. Every step of the process is so thrilling. I love meeting each couple, getting to know them and share in their excitement of being engaged. I enjoy writing each unique ceremony and learning about new wedding customs. The ceremony of course is such a big finale to the whole process and such a pleasure to be a part of.
Describe the type of couple that will have the most success working with you.
I find that I fit in with all types of couples. I always listen to their requests and craft each ceremony to fit. I work with couples from across the spectrum, from those who want something short and sweet, to those who come to the table with a vision and many ideas for customs and rituals to include into their ceremony.
What is your inspiration for writing ceremonies?
Each couple inspires the type of ceremony. From getting to know them and learning about their story, I like to learn about what is important to them to include into their ceremony. There may be cultural/religious traditions or customs that they feel should be recognized. Additionally, a couple may have a wedding ritual that they know or that I offer that speaks to them. I also offer couples to partake in a questionnaire, that each partner responds to separately. I then weave their responses throughout the ceremony.
Photo: Maui Maka Photography
What is the most unique ceremony you’ve written?
Ooh, now that’s a good question. The first that comes to mind was an interfaith wedding ceremony. The bride was Jewish and the groom was Hindu. It was very important to both of them that many of the wedding traditions from each of their religions were recognized. I enjoyed learning and the challenge of researching the different wedding customs. In the end it was so interesting to learn that numerous of the wedding rituals mirrored each other, in the rituals and shared similar meanings.
I also have to mention the triple surprise vow renewal. I was asked to perform a vow renewal for a father and his two sons, who all wanted to surprise their wives with a vow renewal ceremony while on their Hawaiian vacation. The father celebrated his 50th wedding anniversary and the two sons were each celebrating their 20th anniversaries. The men had dresses and new rings for their wives. It was so fun to be in on the surprise and see the wives’ surprised reactions. I also enjoyed the challenge of intertwining three ceremonies into one.
What is the cutest or funniest thing you’ve seen happen at a wedding?
I’ll never forget when the groom’s cell phone started to ring during his vows. He quickly handed it off to his best man and looked at his new father-in-law and said, “I never take a day off!”.
Photo: Caitlin Cathey Photography
What is the most rewarding part of officiating a ceremony?
I feel so lucky that I get to be a part of couples’ most special day. It is such a sweet window that I get to see in people’s lives. I continually get to be surrounded by joy and happiness.
What are some of your favorite venues in Lake Tahoe?
There are so many beautiful venues around Tahoe. I love the simplicity and natural beauty that the outdoors provide. So really, anywhere around here is my favorite!
What is the most challenging part of being a wedding officiant?
For smaller weddings and elopements, I often serve as the wedding coordinator as well as the officiant. When the weather isn’t behaving, and there is no indoor or covered option, it can get tricky to have a backup plan.
Photo: Chris J. Evans Photography
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I love enjoying the outdoors with my family. We love hiking, biking, lounging by the lake and skiing in the winter. I also love yoga and date nights with my hubby.
Where can we find you on a Sunday morning?
On an outdoor adventure, summer hike or winter skiing
If you’re getting married in the Northern California area, reach out to Meredith. She’d love to hear from you!