Camp Kiawah

Camp Kiawah | From a Champagne-carrying burro to a silent disco, this black-tie bash at Kiawah’s Mingo Point was full of fun surprises
Ruth Carey & Paul Kendall
May 7, 2023 • Mingo Point, Kiawah Island
Summer jobs as counselors at Camp High Rocks in Brevard, North Carolina, introduced native Charlestonian Ruth “Ruthie” Carey to Paul Kendall, who grew up in Charlotte, in 2015. They quickly bonded over their love of the outdoors. By summer’s end, the pair had hiked miles of trails off the Blue Ridge Parkway, splashed in watering holes, camped under the stars, and built the foundation of a relationship that would thrive over the next six years. In time, Paul thought about where he might ask Ruthie to embark on their next adventure together: marriage. Where more fitting than the mountains where it all began? He popped the question atop the peak of Craggy Pinnacle, with pup Derby in tow.
Though Ruthie and Paul grew up hours apart, they shared a love for Kiawah Island, where Paul’s family visited every summer and ultimately built a home. For their big day, the couple zeroed in on Mingo Point, a part of the island where they loved to catch sunsets. Though it hosts far more oyster roasts than weddings, they decided it was the perfect venue for them. With its rustic charms and riverfront setting, it felt like a summer camp set on the marsh—and a sentimental setting to gather their 
nearest and dearest. 
Thanks to the discerning eye and planning expertise of Sarah Lillie Designs, Ruthie and Paul’s springtime nuptials dressed up the space for a black-tie bash while still respecting its natural beauty, bridging the gap with an elegant coastal charm that took the form of pastel florals, whimsical blue pattern play, and natural wood elements.
The couple tied the knot in a marshfront ceremony along the regal Kiawah River. Throughout the evening, Ruthie and Paul’s story shone bright through thoughtful details. There was frosé by the Co-Op—the couple’s summer drink of choice—and a classic camp snack of (mini) hot dogs, this time branded with their initials. Even the night’s getaway car, a Ford Bronco, was a reference to the model the bride learned to drive in. After the pair cut their cake, they shared sips from a special chalice—a tradition in Ruthie’s family for nearly a century. 
Planning & Design: Sarah Lillie Designs
Venue: Mingo Point, Kiawah Island 
Photography: Rebecca Sigety
Florals: Festoon Charleston
Caterer: Kiawah Island Golf Resort
Cake: Ashley Brown Cake Design
Rentals: Curated Events, Emerson James, Cheers
Linens: The Social Spool
Entertainment: Seth G (ceremony), Big City Rhythm reception), and DJ Lotis (silent disco)
Stationery: Tiny Shindigs 
Calligrapher: Tiny Shindigs
Beauty:  Wild Ivory (makeup and hair)
Bridal Attire: Anne Barge (dress), Manolo Blahnik (shoes)
Bridesmaid Attire: Amsale