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Sarah Schaffer and Eric Hutchins got married at the Gibson Island Club on Gibson Island
Sarah Schaffer and Eric Hutchins got married at the Gibson Island Club on Gibson Island (Courtesy of Dennis Drenner Photographs, Handout photo)

Date: Sept. 6

Her story: Sarah Schaffer, 32, grew up in Severna Park. She is a cybersecurity business development capture manager at Lockheed Martin. Her parents, Kathy and Roger Schaffer, live in Severna Park.

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His story: Eric Hutchins, 34, grew up in Groton, Conn. He moved to Maryland for work in 2002 after graduating from the University of Virginia. He is the chief cyberintelligence analyst at Lockheed Martin. His parents, Ellen and Lloyd Hutchins , live in Connecticut.

Their story: Sarah and Eric met in the summer of 2012 while working on a proposal team at Lockheed Martin. That September, after a day of review sessions for their team, Eric asked Sarah out.

Their first date was drinks at Eventide Restaurant in Clarendon, Va., where Sarah lived at the time, and dinner nearby at the Liberty Tavern. While waiting for dinner to arrive, Eric invited Sarah to a Pups and Pilsners beer festival happening two days later in Virginia. Sarah had recently gotten a black Labrador puppy and says she was constantly talking to Eric about the dog.

"He knew that the way to my heart was through the puppy, or to make sure that the puppy loved him as much as I did," Sarah says.

They live in Rockville.

The proposal: On New Year's Eve 2013, the couple were hiking along Skyline Drive near Luray, Va. At the end of the day, Eric told Sarah he wanted to get a picture of them standing together at the top of a valley.

After setting the self-timer on his camera, Eric walked up to Sarah, knelt down and proposed.

"He somehow caught the perfect shot," Sarah says.

Venue: The wedding and reception were held at Gibson Island Club on Gibson Island and were attended by 115 guests.

The Rev. Bret Hays of St. John's Episcopal Church in Gloucester, Mass., a friend of Sarah's, presided.

Flowers and decor: One of Sarah's family friends, Dolly Wagner of Severna Park, provided flowers and decorations for the event.

She used lanterns with votive candles to decorate the outdoor ceremony site, and hung illuminated wreaths in the windows of the reception hall.

Bouquets and centerpieces were made using purple, peach and white flowers accented by greenery.

In lieu of escort cards, Dolly wrote guests' names and table numbers on wooden crab mallets engraved with Sarah and Eric's wedding date.

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Her dress: The bride wore a strapless ballgown with a sweetheart neckline, floral lace bodice and ruffled organza skirt by Paloma Blanca from RK Bridal in New York City.

Men's attire: The groom wore a charcoal-gray tuxedo and purple striped tie from Jos. A. Bank.

Sarah's brother, Andrew Schaffer, and Eric's brothers, Edward and Allan, stood with the couple during the ceremony and wore charcoal-gray tuxedos with lavender ties.

The men all wore purple polka-dot socks.

Music: The couple's recessional song was "Happy" by Pharrell Williams.

Ellicott City-based band Mutual Fun played classic rock and contemporary songs during the reception. Sarah and Eric's first dance was to a rendition of "Whatever It Is" by the Zac Brown Band.

Food and dessert: Gibson Island Club made filet mignon and crab cakes for dinner.

Graul's Market in Annapolis made a cake with almond-raspberry and amoretto-chocolate layers. The cake topper, a hollow goose egg with a miniature bride and groom inside, was made by Eric's grandmother's friend and was used at Eric's parents' wedding in 1973.

A self-serve candy station was available for guests. Sarah loves cotton candy, but favoring an option that was less messy, the couple chose instead to offer cotton candy-flavored grapes from Wegmans.

Special touches: On the eve of the wedding, Eric's parents hosted a rehearsal dinner at Mountain Bar Point at the Gibson Island Club with the help of two neighborhood friends who traveled from Connecticut.

At the end of the reception, Sarah and Eric invited the Gibson Island Club staff onto the dance floor.

Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly referred to Eric Hutchins' siblings. The Sun regrets the error.

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