Talk about a total eclipse of the heart.
As any visitor to the Palmetto State knows, it's a gorgeous place to stargaze. South Carolina couple, Kelly Turek and Chris Dutton are about to take their love for astronomy to a new level with their impending nuptials on August 21st, the date of the much-hyped Total Solar Eclipse.
Dutton, who grew up in Cape Canaveral and witnessed the Challenger disaster as a kid, has always been a space and astronomy enthusiast. Fast forward to decades later, and the couple now regularly enjoy stargazing on Pawleys Island, frequently relishing in the majestic beauty of the stars as they spend the entire night on the beach.
Dutton popped the question only a few months ago—not quite in zero-gravity conditions but in a helicopter above Murrells Inlet. But the couple sped up their plans to wed when they realized there would soon be an eclipse visible in the U.S. and the potential it brought for their wedding-day fun.
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When we say they're going all out, boy do we mean it. Even before wedding planning, the couple was organizing a massive eclipse party at a Georgetown, South Carolina vacation rental. Luckily, the boxes and boxes of eclipse glasses they ordered for the celebration will come in handy for their ceremony at Georgetown's Kaminski Museum (they'll still put the rented home to good use with family and friends pre- and post-wedding). Now, they will say their vows during the complete darkness of the eclipse in front of 40 or so of their loved ones at the museum, which is also hosting a sold-out Moon Dance on their lawn with guests hailing from as far away as Vermont.
As if their pitch black "I dos" aren't enough, the entire wedding will have a moon-theme. The obsession will even permeate their food and beverage spread: There will be Elysian Brewing Company's Space Dust IPA, Blue Moon, and moon pies for snacks. With plenty of other thoughtful details and flourishes rounding out the fête, it's gearing up to be the stuff sci-fi buffs' dreams are made of.
If you didn't make the guest list, the area is playing host to a variety of other neat solar eclipse events. In addition to viewing stations and free glasses throughout Georgetown, Hopsewee Plantation is throwing a Moon Shadow celebration, with a live feed from NASA. Nearby, Black River Outdoors in Murrells Inlet will be running a Total Solar Eclipse Kayak Tour along the picturesque Santee River. There will also be a Solar Eclipse Festival at Brookgreen Gardens, also in Murells Inlet. Enticing as these events may sound, we're still hoping a last-minute invite to the Dutton-Turek festivities will come through.