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Aneesha and Hunter’s Mehndi and Duke Chapel Ceremonies

Multicultural Winter Wedding at Duke Chapel, Prestonwood Country Club and Washington Duke Hotel & Golf Club

Aneesha and Hunter planned the second event of their elegant multicultural wedding at Duke Chapel, the place where their love story began. The couple met in 2016 while they both were students at Duke University. With the help of Raleigh-based wedding planner Sally Oakley of Sally Oakley Weddings & Events, Aneesha and Hunter hosted the wedding they always dreamed of across four Durham and Cary wedding venues, despite dealing with three postponements from their original date.

A Monumental Proposal

Aneesha and Hunter both grew up in North Carolina and attended Duke University. The pair met while Aneesha was completing her undergraduate degree and Hunter was attending Duke University School of Law. After a few years of dating, Hunter knew he wanted to surprise Aneesha with an extra-special proposal. 

Hunter popped the question on the front steps of The Supreme Court Building in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 19, 2019. As soon as Aneesha said yes, 30 of their closest friends and family jumped out of nearby hiding places to celebrate the engagement. Friends traveled from all over the country to attend the surprise proposal. Aneesha says the day felt especially memorable because they were able to celebrate surrounded by so many of their closest loved ones.

While the couple first planned to tie the knot in 2020, the pandemic forced them to postpone their original August wedding date. Aneesha and Hunter wanted to be able to safely celebrate with all of their loved ones, but while they waited for a larger celebration to be possible, the couple were married in September 2020 at the SCOTUS building where they got engaged. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito officiated their marriage with the parents of the couple in attendance.

In winter of 2021, Aneesha and Hunter finally gathered their loved ones for the wedding they’d had to postpone three times. Before their Duke Chapel ceremony, guests gathered for a rehearsal dinner at The Pit Durham. “The Pit lived up to the reputation of one of our favorite North Carolina legendary barbecue joints,” Aneesha adds.

Mehndi Ceremony at Prestonwood Country Club

Duke held a special place in Aneesha and Hunter’s hearts, as the university was the setting of their first meeting, and, as many Duke alumni do, the couple chose to hold their winter ceremony at Duke University Chapel. The ceremony was followed by a reception at The Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club on Dec. 18, 2021. 

The Thursday before their Duke Chapel ceremony, the couple hosted a traditional mehndi ceremony at Prestonwood Country Club in Cary, where Aneesha had celebrated her 16th birthday party. She also played golf there frequently throughout her youth while she was a member of her high school’s golf team, so the country club had added sentimental meaning for her.

Prestonwood country club mendi ceremony pamela jhanke photography hand painting
Venue: Prestonwood Country Club | Photographer: Pamela Jahnke

During the celebration, Aneesha and guests had their hands and wrists painted with designs by mehndi artists. The evening included music, dancing and food inside Prestonwood’s grand ballroom. Pamela Jahnke of Pamela Jahnke Photography captured the ceremony.

Multicultural Duke Chapel Ceremony Planned by Sally Oakley Weddings & Events

Sally Oakley supplied the couple with a list of photographers, videographers, florists and other vendors to help make the planning process as seamless as possible.

“Our wedding planner Sally Oakley was patient in managing through all [of] the wedding date delays,” Aneesha says. “With calm and steady assurance, all the work and emotion that went into our wedding planning paid off.” Aneesha chose her wedding jewelry from Diamonds Direct. The elegant embellished ballgown she wore during the Duke Chapel ceremony came from Maryland-based Love Couture Bridal. Table settings and chairs for the event were rented from Curated Events Raleigh (formerly CE Rental). 

After enduring the stress of having to postpone their wedding date multiple times, Aneesha says, “We loved our Duke Chapel ceremony as we had waited so long for our wedding to take place and we felt so blessed, and it was so special to be surrounded by our family and friends.” Washington, D.C.-based photographer Jennifer Bosak of Jennifer Bosak Photography, who had taken photos of the couple’s engagement, traveled to Durham to capture the couple’s Duke Chapel ceremony and the following celebration at Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club.

“At the WaDuke Inn every member of the staff was professional, courteous, friendly and helpful. The hotel is beautiful and elegant. Room are luxuriuos and golf is amazing. The Banquet Hall was exquisite for our wedding,” Aneesha says. Guests danced while DJ Rang entertained.

Advice From The Bride

“Take time to enjoy your time together as an engaged couple and enjoy the wedding process,” the Aneesha says. The couple now live in Washington, D.C., where they both work as attorneys.

In love with this Duke Chapel wedding? Click here to view another Durham wedding that took place there.

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