Real Weddings- Door County DIY

September 4, 2014

Basten Wedding Celebrate we will 133 x 889

Story by Shawn Dobbins

Cali Basten never imagined that catching up with an old friend at a local Green Bay pub would eventually lead to her getting married inside of a hippie-themed barn but that’s exactly what happened after a chance encounter with her future husband, Blair. What followed were several admittedly awkward exchanges via social media that resulted in the pair falling head-over-heels in love with one another, what Cali likes to describe as, “Love at second sight.” Both knew they wanted to have their wedding in upper Door County, where Cali is originally from, but finding the perfect location would prove to be difficult. After encountering numerous roadblocks in finding a venue and faced with a rapidly approaching deadline the father of the bride suggested something unique: an old barn in Fish Creek called “Fishstock” that hosts summer concerts. Shortly after the first of the year the couple was set to meet the owner and tour the grounds but fate once again intervened when Cali was too ill to travel. Blair made the trip with a groomsman and loved what he saw, booking the venue that day. The act proved to be an impressive show of trust in that Cali had not set foot inside of the building and wouldn’t until many months later when it opened in the Spring, “I went with my gut and trusted Blair, it turned out perfect.”
Basten Wedding Whole front of entrance 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding Fish Stock 1333 x 889

A strong sense of personal identity was important to the couple as they set out to create their own wedding, full of inspiration and pieces from their lives. Cali describes the preparation as very hands-on, “We ended up doing a lot of the work ourselves. I wanted to make the wedding feel as much like us as possible.” Menu boards were done on hand-painted pallets by the bridesmaids, the dance floor installed by the groomsmen, and following a recommendation from a co-worker the flowers were purchased from Sam’s Club and hand-arranged by the wedding party. The setting of Fishstock was taken a step further with flower crowns for the bridal party and Cali walking down the aisle to “Wildflowers” by Tom Petty. A hands-on arrangement is fantastic for brides who are looking to keep their costs low but all of the behind the scene work needs to be taken into consideration; what may seem like cost-savings up front can reap untold headaches in the weeks and days before the event. While the couple found working on their own wedding to be a very rewarding experience Cali says it may not be the best situation for all brides, “I love decorating, I love seeing things come together, I love finding those one of a kind pieces that maybe someone else passed up. We took a lot of pride in all of the things we did but it’s definitely not for everyone.”
Basten wedding Munu board 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding Flowers 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding Bouquet close up on chair 1333x889

Basten Wedding Bride Looking down at gown while dressing 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding- boutinere 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding bride with Mother 1333 x 889

Basten wedding bride coming down the asile 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding Dog 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding Couple b and w kissing 1333 x 889

Basten wedding Door County Trolley 1333 x 889
Door County Trolley

Many other home-spun features made the day that much more memorable, including all the desserts made by the mother of the bride. Cali’s favorite, her mom’s fruit crisp, was the featured dessert item. In addition to all of the desserts Cali’s mom also made the wedding favors: caramel corn and her own home-made vintage of olive oil. “She’s my best friend and I don’t know what I’d do without her. Even if she has her plate full she’ll still make time to help me with whatever I need,” is how Cali describes her relationship with her mother. Another family member that did not go unnoticed was the bride and groom’s beloved golden retriever, Ted. An honored guest, Ted even helped himself to some of the Door County fish boil and apple crisp.

Basten Wedding Reception 1333 x 889


Basten wedding desserts 1333 x 889
Basten Wedding Bride Feeding groom dessert 1333 x 889


At the end of the day the bride and groom couldn’t have been happier with how things came together, with all of their hard-work paying off in the creation of a unique and beautiful event. By eliminating any preconceived notions of what they “needed” to include in their wedding they were able to be themselves and let their personalities, both individually and as a couple, shine through. Cali sums up their wedding day saying, “Don’t stress the small stuff. Things like your bridesmaids’ hair or jewelry or dirt on your dress don’t matter at the end of the day, it just adds character. I certainly never dreamed as a little girl that I’d have my wedding in a painted barn with a flying fish on the front but we made our wedding our own I couldn’t imagine it any other way.”


Basten Wedding Bride and her maids 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding Groomsmen having fun 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding Bride and Groom on pier with imbrella and flowers 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding Bride and groom under umbrella kissing 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding thank you gifts 1333 x 889

Basten Wedding couple walking away 1333 x 899

Wedding Date- October 5th, 2013

Bride- Cali Basten

Groom- Blair Basten

Ceremony- Alpine Resort in Egg Harbor, Door County

Reception- Fishstock (a.k.a Camp David) , Fish Creek Wisconsin

Transportation-Door County Trolley


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