As mentioned in yesterday’s post, we were in Long Island for a wedding yesterday. I had written that post before the ceremony and reception took place, knowing that I would probably write a separate post about the event itself.
It was a wonderful event, one of the nicest weddings we have ever been to. It was an outdoor ceremony, and you could not have asked for a more beautiful day. What added to the atmosphere was the music being played while the bridal party processed down the aisle:
But I thought that what really made the day so special was that the ceremony and the reception was a combination Jewish/Catholic celebration.
The couple recited their vows in both English and Hebrew (with the cantor noting that the groom did quite well despite never have gone through a bar mitzvah). At the end of the ceremony there was even the traditional breaking of the glass. I didn’t get the visual, but if you listen carefully you can hear the moment the groom stomped on the glass:
After the ceremony there was an indoor/outdoor cocktail reception, featuring an amazing variety of foods at multiple food stations throughout the venue.
Following cocktails we went into the dining room for the main course. Prior to dinner, there was the announcement/entrance of the bridal party, accompanied by an incredible live band. Within five minutes, you could tell that it was going to be a great reception because of the energy that was in the room.
One of the highlights of the reception was the Chair Dance, the first time I had a chance to witness such a wonderful (and wild) tradition. There were a few people that had their moment being hoisted in the air while sitting on a chair; here’s a short video of the bride and groom:
After a while it was time to sit down and have our dinner, with everyone remarking how good the food was (including the vegan option they were kind enough to make for me!)
After dinner the music and dancing resumed, including several polkas to honor the groom’s side of the family. Personally, the musical highlights for me were “Glory Days”, “You Can Call Me Al”, and “Firework”. Many of the songs featured full sax and trombone accompaniment, with the band frequently stepping off the stage and right into the middle of the dance floor.
It was such a wonderful feeling to be surrounded by so many happy, smiling people.
As I reflected on the ceremony on the drive home, it seemed like I had just witnessed what it takes to bring people together. Good food, good music, celebrating and embracing our differences, and perhaps most of all, love for each other. Seems like a wedding is the perfect recipe for “living life in peace” (to quote John Lennon).
Thank you Jackie and Zach for showing us what is possible, I hope all your days are as happy and wonderful as yesterday.