Written by Katie Stevenson, Photography by Gavin Howarth
Colleen Watson and RJ Prossner were introduced to each other by RJ’s sister back in 2003. Although there was an immediate attraction between the two, distance had kept them apart until the summer of 2011, when Colleen moved to New York. A love-fueled RJ flew to NYC from Detroit, showed up at Colleen’s door step and had her captivated after their first date. By the end of the weekend the pair were making plans to see each other again, and a year later RJ moved to New York so they could finally be together.
For Colleen’s 30th birthday in March of 2014, RJ planned to launch a celebratory rocket, like he does for all big events, but this time he had something else up his sleeve. RJ asked Colleen to help him set up the “birthday” rocket, and as he was kneeling down to show her what to do, he popped the question. Surrounded by elated friends and family, a very surprised Colleen said yes!
The New Yorkers decided that Bermuda would be the perfect place for their dream wedding, especially since Colleen’s parents have a home here that they frequent every summer. In June of 2015, RJ and Colleen, and about 190 of the 215 guests at the wedding, flew down to Bermuda, many for the whole week of festivities. The couple said their ‘I dos’ at St. Theresa’s Cathedral, in a ceremony that celebrated Bermuda’s spirit and treasures. The men’s boutonnieres included sprigs of Bermuda cedar, and a Bermuda cedar ring box held the couples’ wedding bands. Colleen’s love for Bermuda’s waters was represented in the jewelry; Astwood Dickenson made custom seahorse earrings for Colleen and her mother, matching cufflinks for RJ and necklaces for the flower girls. After the ceremony, the wedding party stopped at Colleen’s parents’ garden, where the pair had previously buried a bottle of bourbon according to a tradition that believes burying a bottle of bourbon pointed north near the site of the wedding, will bring good weather on the big day. It ceratainly seemed to have worked! They dug up the bottle and shared it with their friends and family.
Everyone moved to Mid Ocean for the reception, and the newlyweds started off the party with their first dance, which was followed by hotdogs, cookies, cake, more dancing, a beach party with a midnight swim.
Colleen’s number one tip for future brides-to-be is to surround yourself with a hardworking support team to ensure everything goes seamlessly.