By Stephanie Gonzalez

Andrea and Nate Fanning
Sarasota Yacht Club
August 4, 2012

Sarasota is a remarkable place for destination weddings—and that’s just why Andrea and Nate Fanning chose to celebrate their nuptials here. Originally from Indiana, Andrea and Nate wanted to have a ceremony with close friends and family on the beach where they could all enjoy time together for more than one day. Andrea, whose family owns a vacation home in Sarasota, found the Sarasota Yacht Club to be the perfect venue for their romantic getaway wedding.

How did you and your husband meet?
We met through his sister, who set us up on a blind date. She worked for my dad’s company, where I was also working at the time. She thought that we would hit it off, so she asked if he could contact me. We talked on Facebook for about a week and then he asked me out. He graduated from Purdue in 2008 but he’s five years older than me; I was graduating from high school.

What attracted you to your husband the most?
Personality. He’s funny, but I’m more the outspoken one, so he calms me down. I’m extremely blunt and I’ll always be the one to be talking to people. He’s a little bit quieter. He’s kind of conservative in his values; he’s grounded.

How did Nate propose?
He proposed at the Indianapolis Art Museum in front of the famous LOVE sculpture. It was our one-year anniversary and he had my family in on it, too. We were visiting his sisters that weekend and he told us we were going out to dinner to celebrate our anniversary. His sister loves taking pictures so she took pictures at the museum and followed us. While she was taking pictures, he got down on one knee, and then my family came running out of the bushes. I was really surprised; we’d talked about the future but we’d never looked at rings or anything.

How did you choose your vendors?
I always wanted a destination wedding, so as soon as we got engaged we started talking about it. My mom and I came down [to Sarasota] two weeks after I got engaged. There happened to be a bridal expo when we got there, so my mom set up all kinds of meetings with different venues. We booked Beneva Flowers right there at the expo. Karen at the Yacht Club gave us a preferred vendors list, so we followed up with them, too.

What was the planning process like?
You don’t know where to start planning, but as soon as you book the place, the staff there will give you people they work with, so it’s pretty easy. I got lucky because August [in Florida] is a down month for weddings, but for Indiana it’s the busiest month. It wasn’t even really hectic, but I’m also not a stressed-out person.

What was your favorite part to plan?
The whole reason we wanted to do a destination wedding was because we wanted it to be longer than a seven-hour day. We wanted a week-long celebration. It wasn’t just a short “wedding day;” it was really fun. Our actual guest list was only 40 people, and those people were with us the whole week.

Venue: Sarasota Yacht Club
Venue Coordinator: Karen Roman
Make Up: Eri Vincent Makeup at Ana Molinari Salon & Spa
Flowers: Beneva Flowers
Cake: Cakes by Ron
DJ: Rob Satori Entertainment
Photography: Naomi Chokr Photography