Rising from the ashes: Beautiful bushfire relief wedding finally held

After a whirlwind 20 months, Lily and Ryan finally got married this year using the ceremony auctioned at the SA4SA Bushfire Appeal Gala in 2019. 

Image credit: Richelle Casson

With all the crazy going on in the world right now, it is always magical when you come across a special story that makes you smile. The wedding tale of Ryan and Lily Humphris is a real feel-good news story that is sure to brighten your day. 

After a whirlwind 20 months at the hands of the pandemic, the two finally were married this year. While that is special in itself – the couple initially purchased their bespoke wedding to help families impacted by devastating bushfires at the SA4SA Bushfire Appeal Gala in 2019. 

The stunning gala raised almost $400k through ticket sales and an auction for those impacted by the horrific fires that tore through Cudlee Creek and Kangaroo Island. 

Hoping to help in whatever way she could, and with an upcoming wedding to plan, Lily decided to bid on a Bespoke Wedding Ceremony by celebrant Shelley Roylance at the SA4SA auction. 

“It was such a crazy time, and people just wanted to help out however they could,” says Lily. 

“I heard of [SA4SA] and I hadn’t organized anything yet and I just thought it was a perfect way to help support the cause. 

“We don’t usually win things like that so it was very exciting.” 

The couple initially planned on holding their wedding in September of 2020. Yet as the COVID-19 pandemic continued to surge last year, their ceremony was devastatingly cancelled due to restrictions.

“Lily and Ryan were the epitome of every couple planning a wedding in a pandemic, patient, afraid, in love and determined to tie the knot,” says Shelley Roylance.

Finally, 20 months after the ceremony was purchased at the SA4SA Bushfire auction, the couple were married in a beautiful, intimate ceremony a year on from their initial date.

“Everyone was really helpful, I’ve heard some horror stories about people postponing,” says Lily. “We are so happy and thankful it turned out the way it did.”

Lily and Ryan were wed in September this year at the stunning Marybank Farm. The idyllic location is nestled amongst overhanging, lush green trees in Rostrevor, with the quaint barn radiating rustic charm.

“Ryan and I used to go for hikes and we saw it one day. After our walk, we went to have a look, but we got in trouble! You’re not meant to visit without a booking,” says Lily.

“But we just said ‘This is it, this is the place we are going to married’, we fell in love with it instantly.”

The restrictions in place, unfortunately, meant that family from Sydney, Melbourne and New York were not able to fly into Adelaide for the ceremony. However, the intimate wedding was everything the couple had dreamt of.

“We were very nervous, it was supposed to rain on the day as well – but was beautiful and sunny. It hailed the next day,” says Lily. 

“We were really nervous, but Shelley eased our nerves going in, even though we had a lot of time going into it,” says Ryan. 

“The day was great and Lily was beautiful – I balled my eyes out when I saw her.”  

Just like their fairytale wedding, the couple’s story is just as magical. The two met through mutual friends, and after noticing Ryan was out of his comfort zone, Lily took him to the metal rock bars hidden in Adelaide’s busy nightlife scene. The two instantly clicked – and as the saying goes – the rest is history. 

“I fell head over heels for her the first time I met her – it was love at first sight in a way,” says Ryan. 

“I was too shy at first but she read the room and I wasn’t really in my comfort zone and she said hey do you want to go somewhere else…and we just bonded.” 

The pair would then sit on the phone for hours at a time before Ryan made the move to Adelaide a few months after they initially met. 

While the journey to the wedding was eventful, the beautiful day was made possible by the SA4SA Bushfire Appeal Gala and auction.

The outstanding fundraising efforts of the SA4SA Bushfire Appeal Gala raised over $380k for victims and families affected by the devastating Cudlee Creek and Kangaroo bushfires that struck SA in 2019. Every dollar donated to the appeal directly went to those impacted by the fires. 

Presented and hosted by Glam Adelaide and Showcase South Australia, on behalf of the Glam Adelaide Foundation, more than 1,400 people attended the hugely successful black-tie Bushfire Appeal Gala on January 31 2019. 

The event evolved from a bushfire social media group to help keep communication channels open for all those impacted or wanting to help. Glam Adelaide went on to publish over 120 articles focused on bushfire resources, guides to help impacted businesses, and information on fundraising events.

The exceptional fundraising efforts, spearheaded by the respective CEO’s of Showcase South Australia and Glam Adelaide, Steve Testar and Kelly Noble, saw the gala receive the 2021 Community Event of the Year award at the City of Adelaide Citizen of the Year awards. 

“Being able to give back to the community at its greatest time of need was an unforgettable experience,” said Kelly Noble when previously discussing the award. 

“The recognition we received for this through the Citizen of the Year Awards was something we never thought possible, but it’s a true honour to know that we’ve made a difference in the community.” 

You can book a ceremony with Shelley here.

Read more about the outstanding SA4SA Bushfire Appeal Gala here and here.

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