Barbara Bush says 'I do' for 2nd time in surprise Central Texas ceremony

By  | 

CRAWFORD, Texas (KWTX) It's "I do" number two for Barbara Pierce Bush.

Former President George W. Bush poses with the Taylor Pace Orchestra during his daughter Barbara's wedding at the family's ranch in Crawford on April 14. (Photo courtesy of Taylor Pace)

The former first-daughter had her second wedding celebration in Central Texas this month, sources confirm.

After she tied the knot with screenwriter Craig Coyne in a small ceremony in Maine in October so her grandfather, the late President George H.W. Bush, could attend, Bush, 37, got married again with a big party in Crawford April 13-15.

About 200 guests attended the Texas-themed nuptials which, sources said, was "hush hush" with some involved in the planning asked to sign confidentiality agreements so the wedding, and photos of it, wouldn't be leaked.

Despite efforts, photos of the country-chic festivities surfaced on social media.

Celebrities including fashion designers and actors from New York to Los Angeles shared pictures from the wedding weekend in Crawford and jaunts around Waco.

The first night was a rehearsal dinner 'hoedown' at The Amsler: a historic, two-story brick building which switched ownership in February.

The current owners, Yvette and Phillip Helberg, said they knew a 'high profile' wedding had been planned under the previous owner, but they didn't know who it was for.

They were thrilled when they found out it was the Bush family.

"Thank you for choosing The Amsler and we hope you enjoyed your time in Crawford." said Yvette Helberg. "It was a joy to be a part of your special weekend!"

Guests listened to a country and Western cover band while eating Austin's Lamberts Downtown Barbecue, buffet-style, on red-and-white checkered table cloths.

There were "a couple" of speeches, too, sources said.

Former President George W. Bush, his wife Laura, and daughter Jenna Bush Hager were all present, according to a source.

As for security, McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara said he had extra patrols in the area throughout the weekend, and residents told KWTX they noticed Secret Services vehicles outside of The Amsler.

Crawford's Police Chief and his sergeant worked security at the venue.

"It was our honor tonight to work the on-site security at The Amsler Building for the post-wedding party for Barbara Bush Coyne along with '43' and all the immediate and new family and friends," Chief Clay Bruton said in a Facebook post that Friday night.

Bruton said everyone had left by about 10:30pm.

"It was your typical wedding event, everyone had a good time, no one caused any trouble," said Bruton.

Night two, the main event, was at the Bush Ranch Saturday.

Sources said, after a rainy morning, guests at Prairie Chapel Ranch danced the night away to the Taylor Pace Orchestra.

"One of THE best parties we've played to date!!!" Pace said on Instagram. "The energy in the room was off the charts from the first song! I love it when the family is ready to party."

Shuttles took guests to Hotel Indigo Waco and Gathering Oaks Retreat where Barbara booked the entire property for her "closest" friends and family.

Owners Lacy and Brandon Hodges said they were contacted nine months ago about the space, which has 19 bedrooms and can sleep up to 50 people, and it was booked sight unseen.

Barbara and Laura Bush came to tour the property in March.

The Hodges' said they gave guests "the true Texas experience" providing breakfast tacos in the morning, fresh flowers, and s'mores by the fire in the evening.

"We were super honored that the Bush family, who has traveled all over the world, would choose for their nearest and dearest to stay at Gathering Oaks," said Lacy Hodges. "She (Barbara) put her best friends at our place, we tried to provide an amazing, true to Texas experience for them."

She said they were all very gracious.

"I think they were all really pleased," said Hodges. "We hope they come back!"

Representatives for the Bush family told KWTX they aren't commenting on the occasion.