Beach Bash

A Gaithersburg couple's wedding in the Dominican Republic gave guests an excuse to take a vacation



The couple: Teryn Hann, 27, grew up in Potomac and graduated from Winston Churchill High School and the University of Maryland. She’s an instructor at Zengo Cycle in Bethesda and Gaithersburg. Ray Megill, 31, grew up in Clark, New Jersey, graduated from the University of Maryland, and owns Performance Sport Systems, a company that trains lacrosse, baseball and softball players at its Gaithersburg facility. They live in the Kentlands in Gaithersburg.

How they met: In 2009, while a sophomore in college, Teryn was dropping her younger brother off at lacrosse practice at Herbert Hoover Middle School. A coach Teryn knew introduced her to Ray, who was also coaching. After practice, Teryn asked her brother about his “cute lacrosse coach” and told him to pass her number along to Ray. At his next practice, her brother asked to borrow Ray’s phone, planning to enter Teryn’s number. “Only if you put in your sister’s number,” Ray told him.

The first date: They had dinner at Benihana in Bethesda and went bowling. “I had to obviously let her win bowling,” Ray says. Teryn was smitten. “Older, handsome lacrosse player—I fell hard pretty quickly,” she says.

The next step:In 2014, Ray wanted to ask Teryn’s father for his blessing to propose. “Every time I would ask her dad to grab a beer, five minutes later Teryn would call me up: ‘Hey, my dad just said we’re going to happy hour at Caddies,’ ” Ray says. “I’m like, how am I ever supposed to ask this guy the question if every time I invite him somewhere he invites Teryn?” One weekend when Teryn was out of town, Ray showed up at her parents’ house. While Teryn’s father was lighting a fire, Ray finally had a chance to ask. “The next thing you know, the fire alarms are going off,” Ray says. “He forgot to open the damper on the fireplace because he was so distracted.”

The proposal: The following weekend, the pair was driving home from the grand opening of Ray’s sports facility when he said he needed to stop at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School in Potomac to pick up a ball bag one of his coaches had left there. (Ray had decided to propose at Hoover Middle School, where they first met, but didn’t want Teryn to catch on.) At the last minute, he told her the bag was actually at the Hoover field, and asked her to help him look. “She’s like, ‘No, it’s cold out—I’m not getting out of the car,’ ” Ray says. “We were literally arguing for two or three minutes.” He finally convinced her to come with him. “She’s walking around, feet just stomping into the earth. Finally she turns to me and is like, ‘There’s no bag here,’ and I was right there when she turned, on a knee, and proposed to her. She said yes and started crying a little bit. A couple seconds later, she’s like, ‘Why are we here at Hoover?’ I’m like, you got to be kidding me—this is where we first met. Finally it all started clicking.”

The wedding: Ray and Teryn were married on Feb. 13, 2016, in the Dominican Republic at Dreams Punta Cana Resort & Spa, which they found through DestinationWeddings.com. They had 84 guests. “A ballroom is just not us. It’s not our personalities,” Teryn says. “We’re very chill and we love the beach.”

A mini-vacation: The Thursday before the wedding, guests went on a catamaran cruise. On Friday, they golfed in the morning and went to a welcome party at night. The wedding was Saturday afternoon. “It was four or five days of straight fun with our closest family and friends,” Teryn says.

The look: Teryn wore a Wtoo by Watters fit-and-flare dress with a geometric lace pattern, which she purchased at Love Couture Bridal in Potomac, and the resort’s hair-and-makeup artist did her styling.

Making plans: Teryn chose a rustic theme, picked out the flowers and let the wedding coordinator at Dreams handle the rest. The wedding packages are designed for smaller groups, but the resort was able to accommodate the couple’s guest list.

Biggest challenge:Communicating with the resort was difficult at times. “In the Washington, D.C., area there’s such a hustle and bustle and your email is cleaned out at the end of the day, and we get back to people in a very timely manner,” Teryn says. “They’re not like that. They’re very much on island time.”

Saying their vows:A couple of months before their destination wedding, Ray and Teryn were legally married in a small ceremony attended by family at a church in New Jersey. In the Dominican Republic, the couple had a laid-back 20-minute ceremony on the beach, officiated by a friend. “We found love quotes and passages that described our love story, so our friend was able to incorporate those,” Teryn says. “He had everyone laughing, too.”

Party on: “For our first dance, the resort surprised us with having firework sparklers next to the light-up dance floor,” Ray says. The couple extended the reception by an hour since everyone was having such a good time. “Most of Ray’s friends were macho CrossFit-ers or lacrosse players and all had their shirts off by the end of the night,” Teryn says.

The photos: Though the resort package included a photographer, the couple flew in Bethesda photographer Michael Bennett Kress to document three days of wedding events. “I am very big on good-quality pictures,” Teryn says.

The honeymoon:The couple waited until their one-year anniversary in February and went on a two-week honeymoon to Napa and Hawaii. They hit wineries in Napa, and visited volcanoes and took surfing lessons in Hawaii. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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