Monticello Road is a community arts project in Charlottesville, Virginia. Through photography and a series of public events and conversations, we explore how an art can be an essential, integral and everyday part of a healthy community.

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Friday, May 16, 2008


These two know how to have fun. Congrats Benjameister and Emski. We couldn't be happier for you.

Ben and Emily’s wedding was the full deal. Really four days of celebration. Huge tent like a circus or country auction set up behind the garden. Friends encamped on ridge opposite. Outrageously good barbeque. Plenty of excellent local creftbrew. Old friends from really far away. New friends. Missing relations and missed. New members of the family and they feel really close.

Torrential rains with cheery-sized hail that somehow replaced itself with perfect blue skies just at the right moment. Sunlight as if designed by an experienced theatre hand. May’s full bloom. No bugs(!) Four piece bluegrass band on a haywagon complete with hay.

Kids free to roam and do as they please with minimal supervision and tons of fun. Plenty of company for them and for us too. Wonderful people constantly figuring out how to help and just doing so with being asked or told. Two cozy fires, one with free neck massages.

An Aussie, an Alaskan dogsledrunner, lake-country Minnesotans, people from the hills of Carolina. New Yorkers, a photojournalist from DC. She had to leave early to shoot another wedding—the president’s daughter. Vollyball on the east lawn. Croquet to the north. Ping pong on the south slope. I watched them play from the outdoor shower. Of course a good friend just happened to be working on the catering staff. This is Charlottesville and all people of taste were mobilized.

Grass so green and air so sweet. Tiki torches. Fond stories of the one who could not make it. Wish she were here but our thoughts about her are celebrations. Washing dishes in buckets on the porch. Mark your cup with a sharpie or a white ribbon. You’ll want to hang onto it.

It was a wonderful, affirming experience. This pair was destined to marry but they worked hard to get to the altar. Not always an easy road for them but the right one.

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