Nathan Bates and Esther Keyes are officially married.
Bates, 28, and Keyes, 24, tied the knot in front of their family and friends on Friday. 350 people were expected to be in attendance at the lavish ceremony which was officiated by Pastor Dean Miller.
“We have been so anxiously awaiting the day that we would become ‘Mr. and Mrs.’ for the rest of our lives, and it is finally a reality!” the couple said in a joint statement to Fox News. “Today was a dream come true! We know that the love and commitment involved in the vows we have spoken, the emotions and excitement we’ve already experienced together, and our faith in the Lord will be the most important foundation of our relationship, and we know we will remember our promises to each other forever.”
“We are so grateful for the support and encouragement we have been shown by so many of our family and friends! Thank you for investing in our lives.”
The “Bringing Up Bates” star made a grand entrance to the wedding by skydiving in along with a few groomsmen. Keyes stunned during her own entrance in a horse-drawn carriage.
Keyes didn’t have a particular style in mind when she went dress shopping for the wedding but fell in love with a custom-designed wedding gown created by the Kentucky-area shop Renee’s Bridals. The dress features a silk bodice with long sleeves, an a-line ruffled skirt along with a cathedral train that had silk buttons down the back of the dress. Her look was completed with a custom-designed pearl cathedral veil.
‘BRINGING UP BATES’ STAR NATHAN BATES ENGAGED TO GIRLFRIEND ESTHER KEYES FOLLOWING LAVISH THREE-DAY PROPOSAL
“I went dress shopping at Renee’s Bridal in Mt. Sterling, KY, without having a particular style in mind, but I immediately fell in love with the sleek, classy look of a custom-made gown that was hanging on display,” Keyes told Fox News. “After trying it on, I knew I had found the perfect dress.”
Keyes chose champagne-colored shimmery gowns for her bridesmaids, while the groomsmen wore black suits with cinnamon-rose ties.
For her bouquets, Esther opted for a romantic, hand-tied bouquet featuring white garden roses, toffee roses, white orchids, and bleached ferns. They were made by Olive and Orange Florist.
The event was a family affair with the flower girls and ring bearers consisting of nieces and nephews. They walked down the aisle carrying parasols and glass boxes with flower petals. Meanwhile, several of the bride and groom’s relatives participated in providing music for the special day.
The groom’s sisters played piano and violin duets for the prelude and bridal entry as the groom’s brother sang a song during the sand ceremony. The bride’s brother also played the keyboard during the recessional.
Guests were served a dinner consisting of Smoke On The Mountain signature roasted chicken; red skin, garlic mashed potatoes; southern-style green beans; and fresh-baked yeast rolls by Chris Creech’s catering company, Smoke on the Mountain Catering.
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Following dinner, guests were served the wedding cake. The couple chose a 3-tiered square cake decorated with wedding flowers along with gold and white edible pearls. Guests enjoyed the flavor of French vanilla and chocolate-fudge marble cake with whipped white chocolate ganache filling.
Bates and Keyes ended the event by taking off in a helicopter.
Bates’ proposal to Keyes was just as grand as the wedding. The reality TV star asked Keyes to marry him with days of events.
“I planned three days of events to celebrate our relationship that would begin in PA (where Esther is from), move to TN (where I am from), and finally end in Orlando with the proposal. Each day was a surprise and centered around a different lake, and each one built in splendor,” Bates said in a statement to Fox News at the time. “The proposal decorations, the backdrop against Conway Lake, and Esther’s excitement and smile all made this day the best memory that we’ve both ever experienced!”
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Keyes told Fox News that she couldn’t “believe” all of the preparation that Bates put into the engagement.
Bates courted Keyes for a year before popping the question.
Catch up with the Bates anytime on UP Faith and Family.