Elijah Campbell (nfl player) and his beautiful bride Anisse walking hand in hand, in the grass, under light rainfall, during their backyard wedding in Minnesota.

One thing that a pandemic will teach us is how to adapt. And through that adaptation, I’ve found that having a backyard wedding can be even better than at a fancy, established, traditional wedding venue. Especially if you do it like these two did. Anisse & Elijah’s backyard wedding celebration really took this idea to the next level. The background details on the couple, their location, and all the awesome vendors that contributed to such an epic party are below.

Sure, Elijah Campbell is a professional football player for the Miami Dolphins (hometown Central High School talent) but if we’re being honest this was really Zakai and Anisse’s show. Zakai is their super cool 3-year-old son, and as you’ll see in the photos below he was looking mighty sharp and having an absolute blast all day long. Well, except when the Lebanese dance first kicked off with an absolutely banging live drum. 😉

This awesome backyard wedding took place in Ham Lake, Minnesota at Anisse’s childhood home. Anisse & Elijah’s original plan was to have their wedding festivities at the Lumber Exchange in Minneapolis before Covid postponed them the first time. Then, when the pandemic lingered on further into the next year, they decided that instead of postponing again that they’d just pivot to a backyard celebration. Now, this was right in June of 2021 when case rates were plummeting, people were getting vaccinated by the millions, restrictions were lifted, and the Delta variant hadn’t yet wreaked its havoc. This was the first wedding that truly felt free in that regard, and also one of the last of the year that felt this way too.

One nice thing about having a backyard wedding is that you can plan to take your photos anywhere you like. In this instance, we made stops for photos around the University of Minnesota since their story began outside of Blarney’s in Dinkytown. I love shooting at the U of M as they have such amazing architecture (like the Weisman Art Museum) along with rich and vibrant landscaping all around. And although we fought against rain the whole day, we made the most of it, and the party bus stayed rocking.

When we returned to the backyard wedding setup, the party kicked off with a traditional Lebanese wedding dance and set the perfect high-energy tone for the rest of the evening. There was amazing food, touching speeches, and one heck of a dance party. What an absolute blast this one was!

Here’s a highlight reel of images from the day, followed by the complete vendor list to help you throw your own backyard wedding in Minnesota. I’ll also include an extended image gallery for those that want to see even more. Cheers!


Elijah Campbell (nfl player for the Miami Dolphins) dips his bride Anisse back and then leans in for a kiss at the bottom of a long and winding staircase at the University of Minnesota.

Elijah Campbell & Anisse's Wedding Party photo in front of social justice art display at the Weisman Art Museum

Bride & Groom reach their hands out to each other in front of a lush ivy covered wall.

Image of the bride and groom's young son in his tuxedo reflecting the surface of a black grand piano.

Bride and Groom's shoes reflecting in a rain puddle on the day of their rainy backyard wedding in Minnesota

Bridesmaids pose together and laugh together during a beautiful backyard wedding in MN.

Groomsmen pose together and laugh during a photo stop before returning to their backyard wedding reception.

Backyard wedding table decor and floral arrangements

Bride and Groom share their first dance under a beautifully decorated tent at their backyard wedding in Minnesota.

The dance floor is packed inside a florally decorated white tent at a Minnesota backyard wedding.

3-year-old throwing up a peace sign with his fingers, while smiling, and wearing an amazing suit, and in his dad arms, who just got married.

Complete List of Anisse-Recommended Wedding Vendors:

Wedding Planner
Rosetree Weddings & Events
Lead Planner: Paige Anderson

Studio C

Apres Event Decor & Tent Rentals

Private Chef
Richard Colliss & Sean Fortune

Service & Valet

Miss Sara’s Cakery

Anisse’s Attire
Dress: Galia Lahav from Annika Bridal
Shoes: Badgley Mischka
Nails: France Nails & Spa
Hair: Sohelia
Makeup: Brooke Fleetwood

Elijah’s Attire
Suit: Indochino
Shoes: Christian Louboutin
Custom Bow Tie & Pocket Square: D. Leak Designs
Braids: Shonni Styless

Zakai’s Attire
Suit: J Crew Kids
Shoes: Ferucci

Heimie’s Haberdashery

Harvest Wedding Films

Lebanese Singer/Band
Danny Achkar

DJ Young Star
Jordan Townsend

Limo Bus
Renne’s Limos


Extended Gallery of Wedding Photos:


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