The Bachelor’s Ben Higgins Marries Jessica Clarke: ‘I Am So Thankful I Found Her’ – PEOPLE

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"We have so much to look forward to," says Ben Higgins, who wed fiancée Jessica Clarke on Saturday in Tennessee

The former Bachelor tied the knot with fiancée Jessica Clarke in a romantic ceremony on Saturday at The Estate in Cherokee Dock near Nashville, Tennessee, PEOPLE exclusively confirms.

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"I am so excited," Higgins, 32, tells PEOPLE. "We have so much to look forward to. And I know we will have a beautiful marriage."

Ben Higgins, Jess Clarke

Credit: Ben Higgins/Instagram

During the "simple and beautiful" ceremony, planned by Sara Fried of Fete Nashville and photographed by Jordan Voth, Clarke, 25, who got engaged to Higgins in March 2020, walked down the aisle in a gown by Anne Barge, while the groom wore a tuxedo. Clarke and Higgins exchanged personalized vows and the ceremony also featured a scripture reading and quotes from Winnie-the-Pooh that were specially selected by the couple.

Following the ceremony, guests headed to a lakeside reception for cocktails and individually packed dinners featuring the couple's favorite foods — including pizza and sliders — while The Taylor Pace Orchestra played.

Higgins and Clarke, who met via social media in 2018, gushed to PEOPLE about each other days before the wedding.

"Ben doesn't just make me want to be a better person, but he actually makes me a better person," said Clarke. "He assures me in all of my dreams and all of my goals. I never thought I'd have a partner that accepted every part of me."

Said Higgins: "Jessica is so incredibly empathetic and caring. She encourages me and she supports me and I know she cares about who I am and where I'm going. I'm so excited that I get to love her — and be loved by her — every single day. And I am so thankful that I found her."

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