Weddings OoO Wednesday: Gainsville, FL

Editor’s Note: Welcome to the first Weddings Outside of Ohio (OoO) Wednesday!  I feel the need to point out that yes, Melissa is from Gainesville, Florida and this wedding was at University of Florida but you Buckeyes still need to be nice to her!

Please welcome Melissa DiStefano from Masterpiece Weddings in Gainesville, Florida.
Website: Masterpiece Weddings
Blog: Masterpiece Weddings Blog
Twitter: WeddingPlanner1

Why do you love doing weddings in Gainesville?

I love weddings in Gainesville, Florida!  There are so many cultures that come to Gainesville to go to school, fall in love and want to involve the University into their wedding. Gainesville is still considered a small town (albeit with attitude), and I feel so honored to be a part of our clients once in a lifetime event! Lots of our clients live out of town and come back to get married. Gainesville sort of sucks you in like that (in a good way).

I love that The University of Florida brings together so many different nationalities and walks of life. We work with clients of all Religions and Cultures. A lot of our clients aren’t native to Gainesville, but have absorbed the “Southern Way of Life”, they care a little more, are so genuinely sweet, talk a little slower and know what real sweet tea is. I really think we work with the nicest, sweetest, most amazing, coolest, most genuine, clients ever! I’d even bet money on it! (Editor’s note – I’ll take that bet!)

I’ve done weddings in New York, Los Angeles, Texas, South Carolina, Wisconsin, back and forth across the world, but there is something about a Gainesville wedding that is different… I can’t quite put my finger on it, a little sweeter, a little more something. And I can’t get enough.

What is one of your very favorite Gainesville wedding location?

Gainesville Florida has some incredible locations for weddings, The Thomas Center is full of history.  Mr. Thomas had the most elegant hotel in all of Gainesville in the early 1900s and when he died suddenly, he didn’t have a will and the State took his building and turned it into an office building, and now they rent out the old dining room for weddings. It’s beautiful, and so full of history! There are also several gardens for a beautiful outdoor ceremony.

Tell us what makes this wedding so quintessentially Gainesville:

One of our favorite clients, Kristina and Darren, both grew up in Gainesville and moved away after graduating, but couldn’t imagine not getting married in Gainesville. That’s one thing about this town, it draws you back. It’s a part of you, you just can’t help it. Gina Leigh ( did an amazing job documenting the love, the beauty and the fun! We’ve taken pictures at University of Florida Football Field (The Swamp) a bajillion times, but this time, there were members of the band there, and I asked them if they would plllleeeeeasssse take pictures with the wedding party, they were as excited to say yes as I was asking them! Plus Darren and Kristina are so full of life and love, it’s contagious! You can just tell, you can feel it!

Darren and Kristina were married at The Baughman Center and their reception was at The Thomas
Center.  Their photographer was Gina Leigh Photography and their flowers were from Pranges Plantscapes.  Celebrations provided catering and their cake was from KB Kakes.  Now, onto the pictures!

Anything else to share?

But remember no matter where you are getting married, it’s about the love you feel for each other. And about what happens the day after your wedding and the day after that. Your wedding will be amazing, I promise! But don’t forget to make sure your marriage is amazing too!


Thanks so much to Melissa for sharing!  Gorgeous wedding (even it is was a University of Florida wedding)

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