Elizabeth Lee (E. Lee) Jahncke’s sister and brother-in-law thought it would be fun to set her up with their friend Jason Anthony Mead. Little did E. Lee know she’d be meeting her future husband. The foursome met at Lafayette Square downtown to listen to music at “Wednesdays on the Square” and then went to Tommy’s Cuisine for dinner. At this time, E. Lee was finishing school in Asheville, N.C., but she and Jason really hit it off and began dating long distance until E. Lee moved home to New Orleans a few months later.
After dating for a year in New Orleans, Jason decided to pop the question. He asked E. Lee to marry him on the dance floor at the Twelfth Night Revelers Ball. He hid the ring in his pocket and asked her to marry him in the middle of a dance.
The couple planned a traditional New Orleans wedding to be held on September 6, 2008 at Trinity Episcopal Church, with a reception to follow at the Orleans Club on St. Charles Avenue. However, just a week before the wedding, the couple, along with the rest of New Orleans, was forced to evacuate due to Hurricane Gustav. During their week-long evacuation to Grayton Beach, Fla., with family and friends, Jason and E. Lee decided they still wanted to get married, even if it wasn’t going to be in New Orleans.
Saturday, just days before the actual wedding date, the couple began getting things together for a beachside wedding. Some family friends of the Jahnckes offered the couple their beach house right on the water to hold the reception. The simple ceremony took place in the sand at the end of a long wooden pier leading to the beach. Because her wedding gown was left back in New Orleans, E. Lee walked down the aisle in a simple short white cocktail dress and carried a bouquet made by Jason’s mother.
The reception at the beach house was the perfect spot for their 100 guests. A bluegrass band performed, and family and friends dined on delicious seafood. Their wedding cake was from Publix grocery store and decorated with seashells by E. Lee’s sister. Her mother managed to bring two silver goblets with her that have been passed down in their family since the 1800s. The newlyweds drank from the goblets for their toast, just as many of E. Lee’s family members have done before her. Though it might have been thrown together in just a couple of days, it was the perfect small wedding E. Lee and Jason wanted.
When Hurricane Gustav passed through and the newlyweds and their families returned to New Orleans, the couple decided to renew their vows in a ceremony at Trinity Episcopal Church with a reception to follow at the Orleans Club, just like they had originally planned.
E. Lee finally got the chance to wear her wedding gown, sheath lace by Priscilla of Boston gown that both her mother and sister each wore in their weddings. Her bridesmaids also wore their original dresses, raspberry colored Jenny Yoo gowns from Wedding Belles.
Following the ceremony, guests gathered inside the Orleans Club to listen to the sounds of the Dixieland Jazz Band on one side of the building and ELS on the other. E. Lee’s dad insisted on hanging hurricane flags in front of the Orleans Club, in honor of their first ceremony.
Guests enjoyed a gourmet menu of seafood and a wedding cake, created by Swiss Confectionary. The groom’s cake was created in the likeness of a giant dog bowl, poking fun at Jason’s love for the couple’s black lab, Lamont.
After the first ceremony on the beach, the couple honeymooned in Belize and stayed at the gorgeous Victoria House Resort in Ambergris Caye. They now
reside in New Orleans, where E. Lee owns her own decorative painting business,
E. Lee Jahncke Fine Finishes, LLC and Jason is a financial wholesaler for Capital Investment Management.
4th Row: Rob Palermo, Jerry Batson, Pauline Batson, Jason Andrews, Jonathan Thompson, Chris Schultz, Gerard Cox; 3rd Row: Johanna Spradley, Dan Crothers, Chuck Carroll, Sean Kemper, Claiborne Perrilliat, Troy Toups, Jim Twigg, Chris Galloway 2nd Row: Carter Perrilliat, Elizabeth Smith, Sarah Grossman, Sarah Pizzo, Ken Flower, Richard Arcement; 1st Row: Patti Jahncke, Tommy Jahncke, Jason Mead, E.Lee Jahncke Mead, Sarah Offner, Meredith Carroll, Mary Ann Arcement; Children: Hudson Carroll, Landry Carroll, Addyson Carroll, Mary Catherine Flower
E. Lee and Jason exchanging vows on the beach with Reverend Frank Cooper officiating.