Bride and groom Aoife O’Callaghan and Finbarr McCarthy returned to the scene of their first encounter — and first date — on their big day.
After their wedding ceremony, the newlyweds stopped off at the Blue Loo bar in Glengarriff to toast to their future. “We first met in the bar — where all love stories happen! — in 2011,” said Aoife. “It was the day of the Munster football final and Finbarr was returning from an agricultural show in Dunmanway when he stopped for a drink. The rest is history. To relive our first date on our wedding day we went to the Blue Loo with our guests for a glass of champagne thanks to the lovely Eileen.”
Aoife, from Inniscarra, and Finbarr, from Glengarriff, exchanged vows in the Sacred Heart Church, Glengarriff, in a ceremony led by Fr James McSweeney and Fr Michael Moynihan.
Finbarr popped the question before Christmas 2017 in the couple’s home in Glengarriff. “It was the best Christmas present I could have asked for,” said Aoife. Award-winning wedding photographer Adrian O’Neill was on standby with the camera to capture their big day for posterity and at the reception, in The Westlodge Hotel in Bantry, wedding band the Old Moderns (whose frontman Peadar O’Callaghan is the bride’s brother) ensured the dance-floor was full.
“It really was the best day of our lives — perfect from start to finish,” said the bride.
Helping ensure all went to plan also were the bride’s parents Caroline and Peter O’Callaghan and the groom’s mother and father Mary and Dan McCarthy. Also, centre stage were Aoife’s grandmothers, Anne Guerin and Candelas O’Callaghan.
“It was amazing to have both my grandmothers there. They play a vital role in my life. In addition to that my grandmother Anne Guerin made our beautiful wedding cake,” said Aoife.
Aoife’s sister Kate O’Callaghan was by her side as bridesmaid while Finbarr’s brother Denis McCarthy was the groomsman and his nieces Sophie McCarthy and Evelyn Minehane were flowergirls and his nephew Liam McCarthy was pageboy. “Finbarr’s beautiful nieces and nephews were front and centre for the day. They made it super special and even helped us with our first dance,” said the bride. “Denis’s speech will probably go down in history as one of the funniest best-man speeches and being the gentleman he is he welcomed me into the family with some very kind words.”
Aoife bought her Pronovias wedding dress in Cork’s Memories bridal boutique and Finbarr and his party sourced their suits in Tom Murphy’s of Patrick Street.
The bridal hairstyling was by Molly Dunne of the Cheveux hair salon, Glengarriff, with makeup by Stacey Egan. Scent of Tora, Castletownbere, took care of the floral arrangements.
The newlyweds chose the east coast of Australia and the Maldives’ Olhuveli Resort for their honeymoon.
Aoife, a maths and Irish teacher in Coláiste Pobail Bheanntraí and Finbarr, a plumber, live in Glengarriff.