Laura Lavery and Patrick Scanlon sent out invitations designed to look like the Irish Farmers Journal, and presented their guests with cattle tag keyrings as wedding favours.
Even the wedding cake, a three-tier confection, carried the agricultural theme.
And on the day before their nuptials, Patrick rang Laura to inform her of the arrival of an extra-special wedding present: a Belgian blue bull calf they named Rambo. “Thankfully the calf arrived before the wedding day,” said Laura.
This meant they were then able to devote their full concentration to their vows, which Laura, from Tarbert, Co Kerry, and Patrick, from Glin, Co Limerick, exchanged in St Mary’s Church, Tarbert.
Both had attended Tarbert Comprehensive School — but it was when they were working in Coolahan’s Bar in Tarbert back in 2013 that they became an item.
They got engaged in Paris in December 2019. “Tomas Coolahan, the owner of the bar, is a great friend of ours, and he takes full credit for it!” said Laura.
Tomas gave a special rendition of O Maria Concepta during the wedding Mass, when Laura and Patrick were married by their friends Fr Padraig Kennelly and Fr John O’Connor, and Limerick wedding singer, Eve Stafford, also performed.
The bride and groom’s friend, Niall Fitzgerald, organised a live-stream of the ceremony for friends who could not be there and it had more than 1,000 views.
Laura and Patrick and their wedding party were brought by tractor to Tarbert Lighthouse for a photoshoot, by acclaimed photographer Ian Cronin.
Back in Tarbert village, Tomas Coolahan hosted a champagne reception for the couple outside his bar, Coolahan’s, where the love story began.
They were then chauffeured in their wedding car by their friend Colm O’Neill to Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel in Adare for the reception, where they were joined by their immediate family only as numbers were restricted to 25 due to Covid-19.
There was a surprise for Laura and Patrick after the meal when a video was played which included well wishes from family and friends from all over the world.
The bride’s parents, Breda and James, and the groom’s mother and father, Mary and Donie Scanlon, led toasts to their future happiness. Laura’s cousins, Elaine O’Connor and Joanne Butler, were her bridesmaids and Patrick’s friends, James Flavin and Kieran Hynes, were his groomsmen while his cousin Holly Feane Banda took centre stage as flowergirl.
The bridal and bridesmaid’s hair and make were done at Laura’s family home, with hairstyling done by Sandra Shanahan of Sandra’s Hair Salon in Listowel and make-up by Marie Roche of La Bella Beauty Shanagolden.
JM Video Studio of Clonmel, Co Tipperary, provided the videography; and the flower arrangements were by Lawless Flowers, Limerick; while the wedding favour keyrings were printed by Cormac Tagging in Galway.
“We would like to thank the Sheahan and O’Connor families, neighbours and friends of Patrick’s, for the use of their tractors — which they had in pristine condition!” said the bride.
The newlyweds honeymooned in The Killarney Park Hotel and are currently building their home on Patrick’s farm in Glin, County Limerick.