Was This the Perfect Wedding & Reception?
We took the trip up the Sagtikos/Sunken Meadow parkway on a late May Sunday afternoon to witness the wedding of David, my graphic designer and Store Manager at our Valley Stream store, to his lovely fiancée Christine. We arrived exactly on time at 3:00 pm and quickly found the Pavilion at Sunken Meadow Park, which is a building at the end of the boardwalk facing beautiful Long Island Sound. We were seated in a large white tent directly facing the water as the ceremony started promptly at 3:05. The groom stood in front of the room and watched his bride walk up the aisle. It was a beautiful touching and sometimes humorous ceremony officiated by Guard Licensed Captain. It was instantly obvious to me that much thought and effort went into the Captain Arnold who is an active U.S. Coast preparation of this event. The room was bathed in the colors of aqua and white. The bridesmaid’s dresses, the groomsmen’s ties, the napkin colors and the ocean were all coordinated. Handmade driftwood signs with hand lettering adorned the tables, which I later found out were made by Christine and David.
Of course, I knew what the color scheme was going to be because we worked with the Bride and Groom at Plandome Paperie just a few months earlier to help select the perfect custom designed and printed pocket invitation colors for their event. We used a metallic charcoal pocket, a patterned aqua and white border layer and an aqua layer for the text. What I didn’t know was how well they were going to carry out their theme at the wedding and reception. It occurred to me during the ceremony that no matter how much one spends to rent the most magnificent hall for a wedding, you can never beat using Mother Nature as a theme and a backdrop.
After the ceremony, the oceanfront tent was quickly and efficiently converted into the cocktail hour area. An open bar was setup as well as tables with fruits, cheeses and light hors d’oeuvres. There was also a table with cheeseburgers and hot dogs that helped connect to the beachy theme. The 3:00 pm afternoon start time made it perfect for light snacking so that when the dinner was served, people were not overstuffed and still had plenty of room to enjoy a magnificent buffet dinner.
This event also had many fun elements involved. A beanbag toss was available for people to pass the time. A photo booth with costumes was setup, where guests could don silly props and take their own pictures that were distributed instantly and also placed into a photo album for the bride and groom. Flip flops were available for men and women who wanted to walk out onto the beach. Paper moustaches, eyeglasses and ties glued to sticks were on every table so guests could take fun pictures of each other and upload to a facebook site.
The catering wait staff worked efficiently throughout the affair and the DJ made sure that a great time was had by all who attended. The menu, seating chart, drink menu and most everything else was designed and custom made by the bride and groom, but the most magnificent items were the hand‐ made paper flower centerpieces on each table that took 2 years to make. The evening ended as the bride and groom had pictures taken against the backdrop of the sun setting over Long Island Sound, the guest finished their desserts and filled small aqua colored pails with an assortment of candies to enjoy on the ride home. As we left, the sun had set and we could see the lights across the Sound on the Connecticut shoreline.
A perfect end to a beautiful affair. So what are the lessons learned from this event.
- Use a nature theme whenever possible.
- Find a color scheme and carry it throughout your event from the save‐the‐date to the invitation to the bridesmaid’s dresses, the groomsmen’s ties, menus, place cards, table cards and napkins.
- Don’t overcomplicate things… simplicity is best.
- Add your personal touch that will differentiate your event from others.
- Make sure your guests have some fun things to do at your big event.
- Have fun, enjoy yourself and make it an affair to remember.
So, was this the perfect wedding and reception? Perhaps not, but it was one of the best I have ever attended. The new couple will honeymoon in Hawaii where I am sure they will see much more aqua and white.
–Les Forrai & Family