An engaged couple set to marry in the path of Hurricane Florence during the height of the storm narrowly missed disaster when they moved up their wedding.
Leah and Brandon Frick, of Pennsylvania, said they have been planning their North Carolina beachfront wedding in Outer Banks for nearly two years.
“I actually vacationed there as a kid all my life, and I just love it there,” Leah explained.
For their big day, which was supposed to be Friday, Sept. 14, they had rented a huge home on the beach, where they would host their wedding and reception, and house most of their guests for the weekend.
They arrived the Sunday before, but by the following morning, it became clear Hurricane Florence would ruin their plans. The town issued a mandatory evacuation for the following morning, and guests had begun making preparations to leave.
“Brandon reminded me the reason we were there […] was to get married, and we weren’t leaving without that happening,” Leah said.
So instead of canceling, they decided to plan the wedding for that same day.
Many of their family and friends, including two bridesmaids and two groomsmen, hadn’t arrived to the location yet. They had been planning to make the 8-hour drive the night before, and with barely hours before the wedding was supposed to begin, it became clear that they wouldn’t be able to make it to the festivities at all.
But the guests who had already arrived immediately jumped into action once they realized the wedding had to be moved up. They spent the day setting up the reception area and decorations while Leah and Brandon rushed into town to get their marriage license.
"Everybody just kind of kicked into wedding gear and asked what needed to be done and everybody just took off," Leah said.
Guests even did Leah’s hair after her hairdresser canceled.
“We made the best out of it,” Brandon said. “Made the most of what we had.”
When it came time to get married, Leah said they never had a rehearsal, but everything went exactly as planned.
“Everything was perfect," Leah said. It was a dream wedding for me. My dream has always been to get married on the beach, and I got married on the beach. The weather was perfect and everybody had a great time.”
The Fricks and their families said they had no problems evacuating the following day, and wish the best for those who were affected by the storm.