Real Columbus Wedding: Megan and Brett Sparks
Serendipitous timing prevented pandemic pivots for this Columbus couple.
June 26, 2021 | Megan (Erwine) and Brett Sparks’ love story is a modern classic: In 2016, at the start of their junior year at Canton’s Walsh University, Megan’s roommate Bridget introduced her to her boyfriend, JP, and his roommate—Brett, of course. The four were a natural friend group—“We pretty much talked almost every day, hung out all the time,” Megan recalls—and by the start of their senior year, Brett and Megan were official.
“I think we were always a little bit ‘something more’ [than just friends],” she adds, turning to Brett, who nods with a grin. The group went separate ways the summer after their junior year—Brett to Italy and Megan to New York City. “When we came back, we just realized … this could work,” Megan says.
Brett proposed atop a peak in the Great Smoky Mountains in August 2019, and the pair set about planning.
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After touring several venues, the couple visited Swan Lake Event Center in Powell and immediately knew they’d found “the one.”
“I was like, OK, this one just feels like ‘us,’ ” Megan says. “I’d always wanted an outdoor ceremony, and we loved that spot between the two trees.” Swan Lake ticked all their other boxes, too: an on-site body of water, a semi-remote location with little traffic, an open floor plan with a modern aesthetic.
They set their date for summer 2021 and had a surprisingly easy time preparing, given the chaos of planning a wedding during the COVID-19 pandemic. In the final days of their wedding countdown, Gov. Mike DeWine announced an end to Ohio’s state of emergency; it was lifted just eight days before the Sparks’ wedding.
Family played a major role in the couple’s big day; together with a florist from Megan’s hometown of Zanesville and the venue coordinator, Megan and her mother styled “the outdoor ceremony of my dreams,” Megan says. “It looked even better than I was hoping; it was just beautiful.”
Megan also honored her late great-grandmother by incorporating a brooch that had belonged to her in her bouquet as the “something old.” And Brett included his grandmother in his mother-son dance to Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Simple Man.”
“She’s my only grandparent who could make it out [for the wedding],” says Brett, who grew up in Washington. His mother’s mother “loves dancing, so she was excited.”
And the former roommates, Bridget and JP? They’re still together, too, and had a front-row seat to the union they helped facilitate: They served as the couple’s bridesmaid and best man.
Ceremony and reception: Swan Lake Event Center
Cake:Cakes by Cecile
Florist:Florafino’s Flower Market (Zanesville)
Rentals:Got Ya Covered Linens
Ceiling drapery: Serendipity Designs
Music and photo booth:Josh Staley Productions
Photographer: Michelle Joy Photography
Stationery: Invitation design from Etsy, printed via PrintsOfLove.com
Transportation: Xtreme Limo
Accommodations and rehearsal dinner: Hilton Garden Inn Columbus/Polaris
Bride’s attire: Allure Bridals gown, a veil and a hair accessory from Henri’s Bridal, shoes from David’s Bridal; gown preservation by Dublin Cleaners
Bride’s hair and makeup:The Color Pallet Salon & Spa (Zanesville), Mary Kay consultants Brittani Jenks and Hayley Small
Groom’s attire: Joseph Abboud tuxedo from Men’s Wearhouse
Bridesmaids’ attire: Gowns from David’s Bridal
Groomsmen’s attire: Tuxedos from Men’s Wearhouse
This story first appeared in the spring/summer 2022 issue of Columbus Weddings, published in December 2021. Correction: The print version of this story misspelled Brittani Jenks’ first name.