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St. John’s newlyweds incorporate love of rock climbing in their wedding photos

Newlyweds Mandy and Steve O’Keefe garnered plenty of attention when their photos of the bride and groom repelling down a cliff in Flatrock were recently posted on social media.
Newlyweds Mandy and Steve O’Keefe garnered plenty of attention when their photos of the bride and groom rappelling down a cliff in Flatrock were recently posted on social media. - Contributed

A month after Mandy and Steve O’Keefe took the plunge, their love story turned out to be a cliffhanger.

The St. John’s couple, who were married Sept. 22, are avid rock climbers, and as part of their wedding theme they decided to have their wedding photos taken doing just that.

“The wedding was all climbing,” Mandy told The Telegram. “It was something we really wanted to do. We wanted to be different.”

The first photo shoot, taken by local photographer Aamie Gillam after their wedding ceremony, was at Wallnuts Climbing Centre on Old Pennywell Road, where the newlyweds spent many hours over the years.

The photos from the second photo shoot last week have gone viral.

As “a bonus” post-wedding shoot, the couple were photographed in Flatrock as Mandy — donning her wedding dress and climbing shoes — and Stephen — donning his tux and climbing shoes — rappelled down a cliff in an area known as Blood Bath.

The couple chose photographer Greg Locke to take those photos, since Locke is also an avid rock climber.

“Greg suggested the spot and it took about 15 minutes to walk in there,” Mandy said. “I carried my dress in there, put it on and then got all set up.

“It was a lot of fun and they turned out great. Everybody thinks it was so cool and that we were so brave to do it, but we’re just so used to it.”

She said climbing the wall in a dress actually wasn’t so tough, but she did rip a small section of it, “but it was no big deal.”

Mandy said she’s glad she did something different for her wedding and would recommend incorporating their favourite hobby to other brides- and grooms-to-be.

“I tell them that if there’s something you like, do it,” said O’Keefe, who had her bouquet tied with a rock-climbing cord, while her husband’s boutonniere was a cord in a figure eight. “The vendors out there will work with it. Don’t have your typical cookie-cutter wedding. Don’t be afraid. Just go for it. Be unique.”

rosie.mullaley@thetelegram.com

Twitter: TelyRosie

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