Sandy Berry Photography



Central pa Wedding photographer

Karen and John | Surprise Proposal at Longwood Gardens


November 22, 2020


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Longwood Gardens is one of favorites places to go! I am a huge plant lover and geek out over the varieties. It is a phenomenal place to photograph couples because of the great natural sunlight inside and out, the clean European style architecture and it’s really fun to explore! I had the opportunity to photograph one of my friend’s proposals on Leap Day earlier this year and I was thrilled! John reached out to me when he found my blog from the same Leap Day proposal. His girlfriend loved Longwood Gardens and he knew it would be the perfect place to pop the question. Of course I said yes and was ready to make our plan!

Karen and John drove all the way from Pittsburgh for this special day! Plan A was for John to propose to Karen in the iconic “Love Temple” by the lake. It is a serene spot tucked away in the outside gardens. It has little traffic and is perfect for an intimate moment. Plan B was the “Silver Garden” room in the large greenhouse. It’s full of towering cacti, agave and beds of succulents. For a plant lover, it was a great second option!

Finally, the day arrived, but there was rain on the forecast. As we got closer and closer to the final hour John said, “Yes, let’s go for Plan A”. I love when people are willing to forego the unideal weather and press on for great photos! I brought my husband Jason in case we had a down pour and as assistant for inside photos. After we got through the ticket gate, I took out my phone to look at their photos again so I could recognize them. It felt like a special Jason Bourne mission looking at the “target”. John told me later that he arrived shortly after me and saw me with my phone out. Thankfully Karen didn’t see! So much for being covert!

We headed straight for the lake as John and Karen circled around. I stood in place across from the Love Temple surrounded by the fall foliage. The rain let up and I could stand watch without my umbrella. I closely watched through the rainy autumn leaves as each couple walked past. As I saw them approach down the path my heart was thumping rapidly. A few other people walked by as I shewed them away in my head. The moment came! They arrived! John put his umbrella down and walked Karen over to the temple opening. He knelt down on the rainy pavement and held a clear ring box up toward his love. Karen’s eyes filled with tears. She kissed him and the tears flowed freely. She was genuinely surprised and over the moon!

After congratulations and introductions these two were already ready to head to their favorite spots for pictures! After we took a series of amazing photos in the Silver Garden (some of my favorites!) Karen showed me her tattoo of cacti and it confirmed her true love of plants. Longwood Gardens was absolutely the best place for her and John to get engaged. Congratulations you two!!


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I'm Sandy and I'm so happy you're here. This blog a journal about my clients stories and some of my own. Stay a while and say hello!

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