Smiling Horse Steals Spotlight at Bride’s Wedding

By Bowen Xiao
Bowen Xiao
Bowen Xiao
Bowen Xiao is a New York-based reporter at The Epoch Times. He covers national security, human trafficking and U.S. politics.
November 5, 2017 Updated: November 5, 2017

An unlikely guest stole all the attention at a Pennsylvania wedding, as the bride posed for photos on her special day.

Patty Womer was taking photos with two of her beloved horses, Dutch, a sorrel gelding breed and Cricket, a paint mare, Yahoo Lifestyle reported.

But the camera captured a rare moment from Cricket when he started smiling.

The photo of Cricket’s tilted head and huge grin has since garnered much attention on social media, after the photographer, Tony Bendele posted the photos on his Facebook page.

As of writing, the photo, first posted on Oct. 31 had garnered over 4.6 thousand reactions.

Womer told Yahoo that she welcomes all the attention her horses are getting.

“I honestly don’t mind having attention on her instead of me. Dutch and Cricket are such a big part of me, and I will always have a special place in my heart for them,” Womer told Yahoo.

Both horses were given to Womer as a present from her father back when she was 8 years old. And now the close bond she has with the two animals and their connection to her father who passed away in 2016, propelled her to include the pair in her wedding.

The two even escorted Womer up to the ceremony. As Womer rode Cricket, her father’s horse Dutch, walked alongside wearing an empty saddle.

“This just showed that my father was there with me through the whole thing,” Womer told Yahoo.

The newlywed wife is an agriculture science major at Penn State University.

Photographer Bendele who has photographed wildlife in the past told Yahoo that he’s “never seen a horse doing the smile like that.”

“It actually caught my eye initially when we first started doing the photographs. As the bride was smiling the horse would look up and put its teeth just like that,” he said.

But Womer confesses that Cricket is not entirely smiling for the cameras.

“Honestly, the horse is just shaking her head trying to get a fly off or something but with her showing her teeth, it looks like she is smiling,” she told Yahoo.

People on Facebook, however, have been praising and admiring the smile captured on camera.

Bendele advises others that if they want to use animals in their own ceremonies, to be aware of the surroundings, as they will react to large groups and loud sounds.

“We had an experience back in 2016 where we had a bride come down in a carriage and they were going to walk it down the aisle,” Bendele told Yahoo. “As soon as one of the horses got close to the people, somebody had their back turned to it and then turned around and scared it, so it took off and actually flipped the carriage.”

Luckily the bride was not hurt in that incident.

Bowen Xiao
Bowen Xiao is a New York-based reporter at The Epoch Times. He covers national security, human trafficking and U.S. politics.