Our Zion National Park Wedding – How We Got Married in Springdale, Utah.
On May 30, 2021, we had the best wedding day at Zion National Park in Utah. Christian and I wanted to do something with stunning scenic views and lots to do for our guests. Being a traveling wedding and elopement photographer, I had seen it all. The classy upscale black tie events, the boho backyard intimate weddings, the funky and fun themes. Being in the wedding industry really just taught me that I wanted my friends and family around me to enjoy a whole EXPERIENCE. And for us, a destination wedding was the best way to do that.
We decided on a destination wedding in Zion National Park and we had about 75 guests come from all over the country to celebrate our wedding day!
We were originally considering eloping in Zion National Park, just the two of us, but we really wanted all of our friends and family near. This is why our wedding ceremony and reception actually took place right outside of Zion National Park at a Utah wedding venue, the Switchback Grille. Weddings inside the national park are logistically a bit more challenging, but the Switchback Grille had everything we needed to host an intimate wedding. We did our ceremony on their lawn, and our reception was in their banquet space, "The Gathering" which flowed from indoors to outdoors with beautiful views of the mountains.
Conveniently, this Zion wedding venue and restaurant sits in the same parking lot as the Springhill Suites, Hampton Inn, and Holiday Inn Express – the perfect place for our guests to stay. Our guests were all able to easily walk from their hotel rooms, to the ceremony, to the reception and then back to their rooms after a night of partying!
Before I walk you through all of the details of our Zion National Park Wedding day and how we got married at the Switchback Grille I wanted to list our AMAZING Utah wedding vendors for you to check out:
Zion Wedding Planner & Event Design: Forevermore Events
Rehearsal Dinner: Cable Mountain Lodge
Wedding Venue: Switchback Grille
Hair and Makeup: Wild Cactus Weddings (Sarah)
Dress: Truly Forever Bridal
Bridesmaid Dresses: Azazie
Groomsmen Suits: Men's Wearhouse
Rentals: St. George Party Rentals
Signage: Black Julep
Florals: Arlyn (Family member)
Vow Books: Etsy (exact vow books linked here)
Wedding Rings: Karadema Jewelers
REHEARSAL DINNER: at Cable Mountain Lodge, Zion
We flew into Las Vegas and spent our first night meeting up with some other guests who had flown in on Thursday. I hadn't been to Las Vegas since I was young, so going back to walk the strip with my cousins was so much fun! We loved that our guests could fly in to get a taste of Vegas, then slow down in the mountains to hike with us before the wedding.
On Friday, we settled in to Springdale and prepared for the wedding. We hosted a casual welcome dinner with pizza and just got to mingle with all of our guests! My mom and sister put together the guest gift bags that included a welcome note, itinerary, water bottles, snacks and chocolates from the Springdale Candy Company (they even made vegan ones for our guests!).
On Saturday during the morning and daytime, all of our guests hiked within the park, hung out at the pool, and then headed to the rehearsal.
Our rehearsal dinner was hosted by my Mother and Father in law at the Cable Mountain Lodge and they did such a beautiful job! It was outdoors and they had a live musician as well. I have no photos of the set up, but I wore a champagne satin cowl neck dress from Show Me Your Mumu Weddings! The wedding rehearsal dinner speace has beautiful views of Zion and it was the perfect setting for our guests, right down the road from everyone's hotels.
GETTING READY: the morning of our wedding day in Zion
Christian and I both got ready for our Zion wedding day in rooms at the Springhill Suites. My bridal suite had a direct pathway over to the ceremony space at the Meadow at Switchback Grille so it was a perfect location.
I designed my own wedding invitation suite, and now I actually sell templates for people to DIY their invites too! You can find my wedding invitations and signage templates on my Etsy shop!
My wedding hair and makeup was done by Utah HMUA, Sarah, at Wild Cactus Weddings and I'm so excited that we get to work together again for one of my bride's Zion elopements this year! Her team did an amazing job and kept the morning fun and relaxed while staying on time.
THE FIRST LOOK & CEREMONY: Our wedding day in Zion
We opted for a first look to ease our nerves and to have the opportunity to spend more time together on our wedding day. We were able to do this right outside of the hotel with stunning backdrop views of Zion National Park behind us! We also were able to get a lot of our portraits and wedding party photos done before the ceremony.
Our ceremony was hosted outdoors at the Meadow at Switchback Grille. We had about 80 guests in attendance, which was the perfect size! The people who celebrated with us were our closest friends and family, and we felt so honored that they made the trip out for our wedding.
Our ceremony mixed neutral florals with boho elements like the pampas grass. We went for a simple arch to not takeaway from the beautiful scenery. Our rentals were from St. George Party Rentals through our planner, Forevermore Events.
Our officiant was our pastor who did our premarital counseling, and we loved having a more personal ceremony to us and our relationship! We took communion, wrote personal vows, and had my cousin play live music for our processional and communion. We kept it short and sweet for our guests - about 25-30 minutes.
PORTRAITS: At the Zion National Park Overlook
We did our bride and groom wedding portraits at the Zion Overlook a few days after. I knew that we wanted to shoot in the park, but not on the wedding day. The idea of hiking and sweating in my wedding dress on the day of was not appealing, lol. So we opted for post wedding bridals, and BEST DECISION EVER! We met back up with our photographer and videographer to do those photos and we got to do one casual look, then one in our wedding attire for some variety.
The Zion Overlook hike really isn't too difficult but we did not wear our wedding attire up to the overlook. We hiked up in casual clothes and brought a changing tent to change into the wedding clothes. I would definitely recommend changing at the top of the hike!
THE RECEPTION: Zion National Park Wedding
Our cocktail hour and reception was at Switchback Grille and guests were able to easily walk from the ceremony site up to the reception space. Because we had gotten so many formal photos done before the ceremony, we just had family photos and a few portraits, then we were able to head up to cocktail hour to eat some appetizers privately before the reception began.
Our reception was an indoor outdoor space with really beautiful string lights and views! Our table decor consisted of bud vases and candlesticks. I love the more minimal look that is dressed up with florals. All of the signage was created by Black Julep!
Our wedding planner gave us the idea of a sparkler first dance, and I loved doing that! Our night concluded with a rose petal sendoff, and then we honeymooned around Utah and Arizona!
Grace and Christian Torres are a husband wife wedding and elopement photography and videography team. We specialize in luxe editorial weddings in Florida and NYC. And we specialize in adventure elopements in Utah and Arizona for non traditional couples. We would love to hear more about your wedding plans! Reach out to us for more information about our wedding and elopement photography and videography services.