Dominican Republic Destination Wedding/Wedcation – Part 1 With Leah + DJ

When winter starts in the late fall, January is still far from spring. For the 40+ people flying down to the Dominican Republic from Minnesota to celebrate Leah + DJ’s destination wedding/wedcation, it was a welcome reprieve from winter. Especially with another snowstorm that wrecked havoc on some of the flights leaving Minneapolis for the DR. This was a lovely change from temps well below freezing to comfortably wearing swim suits and swimming in the Caribbean Sea by day and having bare arms and legs in the evenings at the Dreams La Romana resort in Bayahibe.

This wasn’t your normal destination wedding. But then Leah and DJ aren’t your normal couple. They are great outdoorsman who enjoy fishing and hunting together. In fact, the only meat they eat is what they have caught themselves. When I returned their wedding day to them earlier this month, they made a delicious dinner that included pheasant they had shot. A first for me and I thought it tasted just like chicken.

These two value people and it showed clearly with the people who surrounded them in the Dominican Republic to celebrate with them during this wedcation. So when normal is thrown to the wind, you do things your own way. You skip the rehearsal groom’s dinner and have a day on the catamaran, thanks to DJ’s parents Dale + Char. A day of soaking in sunshine, gorgeous seas, a fun Scuba Caribe crew, music, dancing, and plenty of tasty beverages. We met on the beach early Wednesday morning and boarded the catamaran after many had been fitted for flippers and grabbed snorkels with masks. I highly recommend if you go to the Dominican Republic, you bring your own sunblock. It’s totally necessary with the tropical sunshine and reflection on the water and sand. And if you wait to buy it there, like I did, you’ll pay thirty bucks for a 6oz bottle.

After plenty of swimming, dancing, and celebrating, the catamaran returned us to the resort mid-afternoon. Completely exhausted with many ready for naps and wanting aloe for sunburns.

Dreams La Romana Resort beach with palm trees, tiki huts, and lounge chairs
People waiting on beach to board catamaran in the Dominican Republic
Scuba Caribe crew standing on top of catamaran in Dominican Republic
People snorkeling around catamaran in the Dominican Republic
Woman jumping off catamaran ladder into Caribbean Sea
Man making a funny face while putting on snorkel and mask in Caribbean Sea
Looking down through catamaran netting to see man hanging onto rope in the water

This guy was my constant photobomber throughout the day. He was fun. 🙂

Scuba Caribe crew pouring drinks for catamaran guests and photobombing the camera

The wind did wonderful things with Erin’s hair while we were on the catamaran. Little did I know at this point that she would be my most awesome lighting assistant the next evening after Leah + DJ’s wedding ceremony.

Wind is making a woman's hair fly crazy on a catamaran

Leah’s mom Sherry was a dance machine on the catamaran trip. DJ was twirling her good here.

Woman dancing on catamaran with drink in hand

I love seeing fathers and daughters who are so close and enjoy each other.

Father and daughter standing close while looking out on a catamaran.
People line dancing with drinks in hand on a catamaran

This Scuba Caribe crew member had her hair in a crocheted hat for most of the trip. When she let it down, the wind whipped it around fabulously while she danced and got more folks on the dance floor.

Wind whipping a woman's long hair around dancers on a catamaran
People dancing and laughing on a catamaran
People getting down low while dancing on a catamaran
Catamaran crew pouring beers for folks in the Caribbean Sea

These grandparents brought along two Flat Stanley drawings to photograph and send back to their grandkids on the mainland.

A woman photographing Flat Stanley in the Caribbean Sea from the top of a catamaran
Crew dancing on a catamaran and wedding guests dancing in the Caribbean Sea
People dancing the YMCA in the Caribbean Sea off of a catamaran in the Dominican Republic

At the last stop off shore, the crew brought out a limbo bar for people to duck under. Some kept their drinks securely in their teeth as they went under the bar and water while others adeptly transferred it by hand over the bar while their heads were under water.

People doing the limbo under water in the Dominican Republic
Man with a beer in hand and water pouring off his face in the Caribbean Sea

I found a trouble maker lurking under the catamaran who was splashing the people above.

Man flicking water up on people sitting on top of catamaran
People dancing in the Caribbean Sea with hands over their heads
Woman laughing as her best friend whispers in her ear
Woman dancing with hands up while shouting and happy onlookers on the catamaran
Women hugging and laughing on a catamaran while a drink spills
Catamaran sail over a deck filled with people dancing on the Caribbean Sea
Happy people smiling on a catamaran
Woman dancing in between two men on a catamaran

Come back next Monday to see photographs of Leah + DJ’s destination wedding in the Dominican Republic!