Brett’s Bar Mitzvah – Congregation B’nai Shalom, Westborough + The Verve, Natick

Brett became a Bar Mitzvah at Congregation B’nai Shalom in Westborough this past June. Immediately following the service was a Kiddush where friends and family could celebrate Brett’s accomplishment.  But, the party really got rolling that evening at The Verve in Natick.

Brett didn’t want a “theme” so we went with more a of “look and vibe” for his party decor. Royal blue, black and silver were the foundation to his party…because you have to start somewhere!  When it came to the “look and vibe” we went for an urban feel.  The graffiti logo was used on the brick wall, video screens and cupcakes.  For the other decor, we brought in metals with a diamond plate DJ booth and table numbers, metallic lit centerpieces and metal stools at the kids triangular high top  tables.  Adults were served dinner tableside, while Brett and his friends had a fun kids buffet with open seating.

The party started with Brett’s super high energy entrance, through an arm-tunnel of friends and family to the song “A Little Party Never Killed Nobody”.  This perfectly describes his fun-loving and silly nature! A few party games were followed by a blessing by Brett’s three grandfathers and a traditional candle-lighting ceremony. Then the dance floor opened up for a set with the DJ and all of Brett’s friends and family joined him to boogey, shake and congratulate the man of the hour.

Nearing the end of the night, everyone quickly joined in the hora as Brett, his siblings, and parents got lifted in the chair.  Then came the late-night treats; cupcakes and an ice cream sundae bar so everyone could pick out which sweet suited them best. With dessert in hand, we took the opportunity to slow things down a bit for a beautiful, heartfelt speech from Brett’s mom and a sweet introduction into an adorable video montage with photos and video clips.  More dancing and celebrating followed.  One thing is for sure, Brett’s energy and fun-loving nature was contagious and it was clear that everyone enjoyed celebrating with him!   It was an honor to be part of another Harmon Family event.  Mazel Tov, Brett!

A few words from Melanie:

This was our second time using Michelle for a Bar Mitzvah, and we wouldn’t use anyone else! Michelle is so attentive to detail, she really did so much work all along the way…resulting in a calm hostess and a smooth event. Michelle does her research and finds what is right for the client’s taste and budget. She makes planning a big event “easy!”  Can’t wait to work with her on #3 in a few years!

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Event Coordination: The Day Of

Rentals: Rentals Unlimited

Photographer: Nikki Cole

Videographer: Playback Video

Decor: Art of the Event

Photo Booth: The Snapboxx

Kiddush Caterer: Franklin Caterers

Cupcakes: The Icing on the Cake

Reception Music / Lighting: Northern Lights Entertainment

Hillary + Jonathan – The Fairmont Copley Plaza, Boston, MA

Hillary and Jonathan were married at the historic Fairmont Copley Plaza in Boston in June. Their mix of fun and traditional touches made this couple and their celebration both modern and timeless. Take Hillary’s killer blue shoes and nail polish, for example! No one ever said “something blue” had to be something boring. Hillary was absolutely stunning with her fabulous glam squad, her custom made Mark Zunino gown, and the loving support of her sweet family, as she got ready for the big day!

Surrounded by 21 of their closest family and friends, was the traditional signing of the Ketubah.  Immediately following was their ceremony.  As Jewish tradition has it, their parents joined them beneath the chuppah.  The jaw dropping, grand ballroom was transformed, for the romantic ceremony, with beautiful ambient lighting,  and enormously impactful florals of mother of pearl blush roses, white Tibet roses, Sahara champagne roses, Vendella cream roses, white hydrangeas and towering blush and white cherry blossoms mixed with green leaf accents.

Following the exciting breaking of the glass, guests enjoyed a cocktail hour which preceded the reception, back in the breathtaking ballroom.   With a subtle change in lighting, towering white blooms and accents of gold coordinated with the glamorous ballroom, it was nothing less that spectacular.  Guests danced and celebrated to the incredible Night Shift Entertainment.  Later in the evening, guests were treated to a delicious candy bar and the always anticipated  hora!  The dance floor filled up quickly and stayed full all evening long. Wedding painter Vesna Longton painted the festivities as they occurred, making for a lifelike and life-filled portrait of the day. Cheers to this beautiful couple! Their love for one another, and those around them, emanated throughout and it was such an honor to be a part of such a special day!

A few words from Hillary:

I’m still in denial that my wedding is over. Working with Michelle was absolutely the best experience. She helped keep all timelines in order and confirmed with meticulous attention all of the details of our vendors. The ceremony was a dream. Sleek flowers and elegant lighting made my vision come to life. The band made sure everyone stayed on the dance floor until the wee hours of the night. It’s hard to believe that 16 months of planning was over in the blink of an eye. I still look at wedding photos daily to remind myself how fortunate I am to have such an incredibly supportive and generous family, wonderful friends and a wedding team that turned my dreams into a reality. Thank you for being a part of my special day.

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Event Coordination: The Day Of

Venue: The Fairmont – Copley Plaza

Rentals: Rentals Unlimited

Hair: Patrice Vinci Salon

Make Up: Hilary Warner Makeup

Wedding Dress: Mark Zunino 

Cake: Cakes to Remember

Candy Buffet: Sweet Details

Florist: Flou(-e)r

Lighting: Design Light Co

Photographer: Metzger Studios

Ceremony/Cocktail Music: Blissful Sounds

Reception Music: Night Shift Entertainment

Wedding Painter: Wedding Painting by Vesna Longton

Stationary: Allure Invitations

Jonah’s Bar Mitzvah – Congregation B’nai Shalom, Westborough + Pinz, Milford

Jonah became a Bar Mitzvah at Congregation B’nai Shalom.  Following the service, was a delicious Kiddush luncheon where family and friends had the chance to gather, celebrate and congratulate! It was also the place where Jonah’s personal project was shown, as he collected and donated children’s books to Boston Medical Center’s Child Life Program, an incredible program that always appreciates donations!

The celebration continued in the evening when Jonah’s family and friends met up with him at Pinz in Milford.  Dance parties are NOT for everyone and I can’t stress enough how impressed I was by his parents recognizing this.  Celebrating in a way that was more up his alley, made it all that more enjoyable for him…and at the end of the day that’s really important.  So instead, Pinz was the perfect solution with glow bowling, video games, laser tag and more. I mean seriously, is there a kid out there who doesn’t love all of that?  They enjoyed great kids food like a taco bar and mini hot dogs, had fun at a photo booth and got to watch a video montage and sports bloopers on the big screens over the bowling alley.  Before the party ended, Lizzie’s Ice Cream came by so everyone could  make ice cream sundae’s!  It was truly a good time had by all (including many of the adult who were seen playing laser tag and video games).

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Event Planner: The Day Of

Photographer: Eda Stefani

Kiddush Caterer: Franklin Caterers

Linens: Rentals Unlimited

Celebration: Pinz Bowl

Balloons: Big Balloon Bash

Linen: Table Toppers

Ice Cream: Lizzie’s Ice Cream

Photo Booth: Creative Event Services

 

Emily’s Bat Mitzvah – Congregation B’nai Shalom, Westborough, MA

Emily became a Bat Mitzvah, at Congregation B’nai Shalom in Westborough, last August. They decided to use the Temple’s social hall making an easy and seamless transition, for family and friends, from ceremony to reception!   The adult cocktail hour was in the lobby and in the outdoor garden but the kids got right into it, with Northern Lights Entertainment and a photo booth, in the social hall.  Adults in particular were immediately engaged with the fun “Em-mojito” signature drink (a blue mojito of course!) and “fun fact” cocktail napkins about Emily!

When it came to decor, Emily and her family love the beach so, there was never a doubt about her choice theme for her Bat Mitzvah.  When we started talking about decor, the first bit of feedback I received was “no beach balls!”, so I knew immediately the direction we were headed. I have to say, we had so much fun planning our own take on this beach themed celebration!

Being an afternoon event, it was important to the family that we black out the room so nobody remembered that it was daytime.  Yet even though it was darkened, the social hall, was immediately brightened up with the clean, crisp shades of white and turquoise throughout the room; the all white dance floor, the white “petal” table linen, white chivari chairs with turquoise cushions and blue uplighting throughout the room.  The kids centerpieces were balloons to represent bubbles and the adults were a combination of various colored beach glass and flowers.  The napkins set at each placesetting were white, tied with different shades of blue raffia, while the adults enjoyed a beautiful turquoise water goblet.  The seating assignments were all the beaches Emily has been to with photos of her at that beach.  At the end of the party, each of Emily’s friends took home a custom embroidered beach towel!

 

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Event Planner: The Day Of

DJ: Northern Lights Entertainment

Photo Booth: Creative Event Services

Florist: Jeri Solomon Floral Design

Balloons: Big Balloon Bash

Photographer: Jill Thompson

Videography: Playback Video

Caterer: Tastings Caterers

Rentals: Rentals Unlimited

Invitations/Printed Materials: Allure Invitations

Katie + John – Wellesley Country Club, Wellesley, MA

Katie and John were married, at Ignatius of Loyola in Chestnut Hill, on the most beautiful day in July. Before heading off to their first look, Katie and John got ready with the girls and guys at Lowes Hotel in Boston. The girls wore light, summery, flowing gowns in navy and white while their flowers added a pop of color with a delicious shade of orange. Katie wore a gorgeous, multi-layered strapless gown, with a soft pink belt which as delicately coordinated with the ribbon on her bouquet. Katie and John took separate limos while the entire bridal party took an Old Town Trolley to the first look, group photos and ceremony!

Following their beautiful, ceremony everyone made the quick trip over to Wellesley Country Club. While there were 2 locations for cocktail hour, most retreated to the deck, overlooking the spectacular golf course. Guests were greeted with white wine, sparkling water with lemon and their drink of choice, John Daley’s plus delicious appetizers.

Once cocktail hour was over, guests entered the reception to the incredible sounds of Beantown! Once the bridal party was introduced, Mr. and Mrs. Pollock had their first dance where they decided to mix things up a bit, which I always love! They started with “Crazy Love” and then the music quickly changed to “Domino” for some fun, faster dancing! I admit that I wasn’t sure at first, but once they explained how much more comfortable they were dancing to faster music, I got it. And seeing how much fun they were having sealed the deal. Such an important reminde that everyone needs to do what feels right! Katie’s sister Caroline, her Maid of Honor, and John’s best man, Rob, each gave warm, heartfelt toasts before their cake cutting and parent dances. As always, Beantown kept the dancefloor packed all night long!

A few words from Katie:

“Thank you to our wonderful family and friends, especially our parents and siblings, for such an unforgettable wedding day!  Thank you, as well, to our wonderful vendors including Michelle and her team.  We had a blast, and the memories made will last a lifetime.”

 

Event Coordination: The Day Of

Band: Wilson Steven’s Beantown

Photographer: Nancy Gould

Videographer: Brighter Lights Media

Florist: Flou(-e)r Specialty Floral

Cake: Sweet Tooth

Rentals: Peterson’s Party Center

Make Up: Donna McKinnon Personal Stylist

Hair: Jamie Ciampa of Phillip Ciampa

Trolley: Black Tie Limo

Limo: ATR Limousine & Transportation

Bus: Local Motion of Boston

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Morgan + Alex, Hyatt Regency Boston Harbor

Silly, cute, adorable, sweet, fun…I mean I could go on about Morgan and Alex…I really, really could.   The crazy thing is that I only met them the day before their wedding. Yep. They hired me a year before but because they live in California, we didn’t have the opportunity to meet until a few hours before their rehearsal. But honestly, that didn’t matter.  I feel like I’d known them a lifetime.

These two are pure joy and wanted nothing more than to make the most of every moment of their wedding day exactly that.  Thankfully, they were blessed with a spectacular day, as they said their “I do’s” on the beautiful lawn of the Hyatt Regency Boston Harbor, overlooking the Boston Harbor with incredible views of the Boston skyline. Following the ceremony, which was full of countless joyous and happy moments,  guests remained on the lawn and enjoyed cocktail hour and lawn games, lending to the couples playful vibe.

Their vibrant color scheme of lime green and navy blue were carried throughout the wedding. From the program signage to the flowers to the custom made game of corn hole. Guests enjoyed dinner, in the tent on the lawn, where they also enjoyed traditional toasts, a cake cutting and dancing the night away. And, to top off their super fun night, were hot dogs for a late night snack! Congratulations again to this fun loving couple as they near their one year anniversary!

A few words from Morgan:

Michelle is right! It WAS as if we’d known each forever. After some remote planning, she stepped in the day before our wedding to run our rehearsal and intuitively understood exactly what I was going for. On our wedding day, Michelle kept the vibe positive and fun, yet was down to business – exactly what you need on the day of so you can relax and enjoy everything as it comes!
We had a perfect wedding day! Full of family, friends, love, laughter, and late-night hot dogs.

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Event Coordination: The Day Of

Venue: Hyatt Regency Boston Harbor

Florist: Almquist Flowerland

Photographer: Jill of Person + Killian

Videographer: BKB & Co. 

Hair and Makeup:  Donna McKinnon

Cake: Konditor Meister

Officiant: Elly Jackson

Reception Music: Benny Goodman of Entertainment Specialists

 

Chrissy + Jon – St. John the Baptist Hellenic Orthodox Church + Langham Hotel, Boston, MA

Chrissy and Jon were married at St. John the Baptist Hellenic Orthodox Church in the South End. Before the wedding Chrissy got ready at the home she shares with Jon, right down the road in South Boston. Alongside were her mom, her 6 bridesmaids and her favorite furry friend, all so excited for the big day!  You could feel all the love the girls had for Chrissy, especially her sisters who loved having fun with her, as you can see in one of the photos.  Chrissy wore a gorgeous traditional lace gown by Eve of Milady and a stone headpiece. The girls wore fun and elegant champagne sequin gowns and the flowers were beautiful in simple shades of ivory and pale pink.

Following their traditional Greek Orthodox Ceremony, the couple was picked up in the Langham Hotel’s pink London-style taxi.  Since they didn’t have a first look, they met their bridal party at the hotel where they took some photos.  Following the bridal party introductions and traditional first dance, Chrissy’s father welcomed guests and her two sisters and Jon’s best man toasted the new couple!  Following dinner guests gathered around the dance floor for parent dances and a fun dance set with their Greek band! The ending sweet touch was honey, jarred by Chrissy’s father who is a beekeeper, which was a favor for every guest…such a special and personal touch.  Happy one year anniversary to this most lovely couple!

A few words from Chrissy:

Planning is not my forté, so when Jon and I got engaged, it wasn’t long before I thought (with some considerable dread), “Oh no, now we have to plan a wedding.” We knew we wanted a city wedding, something close to home, and we lucked out when we fell in love with the Langham. It had just the right balance of city-cool with a dose of history and Post Office Square right outside the door. On the day of the wedding, I felt (mostly) calm knowing Michelle and I had planned the day down to the minute. Sure, not everything went to plan (a runaway bridesmaid and best-man speech gone rogue come to mind) but we rolled through the day surrounded by so much love from our family and friends and that’s what we remember most. We look back at the entire day so fondly – and have photos plastered all over our new home to prove it.

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Event Coordination: The Day Of

Church: St. John the Baptist Hellenic Orthodox Church

Reception: The Langham Hotel

Hair: Shag

Makeup: Danielle Austin

Transportation: Rockstar Limo

Cake: Konditor Meister

Ceremony Music: Mozart Academy

DJ: Hellenic Sound Productions

Band: A band assembled by a family friend

Photographer: Suzanna March Photography

Florist: Fiori Florals

 

Rebecca + Joey, Brewster Academy, Wolfeboro, NH

Rebecca and Joey were married on Lake Winnipesaukee.  Joey’s family has a home on the lake in Wolfeboro, NH,  and it was a very special place to them.  They couldn’t think of a better, more appropriate destination to get married.  But, living in NY, they quickly realized it would be beneficial to having a local hand in their planning.  That’s where we came in and began the fun and exciting process of planning their wedding on the lake, at Brewster Academy.

Rebecca and I quickly became partners in crime, as we planned their dream wedding.   Being a NYC girl, and working for Town and Country, Rebecca not only has great taste and style but she knew exactly what she wanted her wedding to look and feel like.  Her vision was romantic and elegant, modern, yet rustic.   A lot to balance but I think the execution, and coming up with just the right balance, made the details look effortless.

We brought in some of the best talent in Boston including Capers Catering, Wilson Steven’s Beantown and Stacey Frasca.  We also had so much fun finding the best local vendors as well!  Exeter Tent was literally the foundation to this amazing wedding, F as in Flowers provided gorgeous floral arrangements and the delicious wedding cake was from Oh La La.

Rebecca and her bridesmaids got ready in a house on the lake just 10 minutes from the venue.  Joey arrived by boat for their emotional first look and then they had some fun taking photos at some of the best spots in Wolfeboro, such as the old train station.

From the ceremony on the lawn and cocktail hour in the boat house, to the reception in the tent, the views were spectacular and the breeze was comforting.   What I love most are all the special, unique touches.  Just to name a few, the gorgeous arbor decorated with flowers and organza, the fun signature drink, the Moscow Mule, and the oversized R&J marking the lantern lined pathway to the tent.  Of course there was the first dance to warm your heart, the heartfelt toasts and the parent dances to make you sob but this crowd knew how to party.  They kept the dance floor packed all night long, but it didn’t end there.  The majority of their guests came from out of town, so they wanted to be sure to spend as much time with everyone as possible so their after party continued at the local crawl, The Wolfeboro Inn.

Rebecca and Joey were a dream to work with.  I am so thankful to this amazing couple who let me into their lives and allowed me to be part of planning such a special weekend!  Congratulations to them on their first anniversary and their first baby boy!

A few works from Rebecca:

“Our wedding day was magical! Everything turned out exactly how I wanted – from the romantic, rustic decor to our first dance as husband and wife. Working with Michelle was a dream – she truly brought our detailed vision to life and gave us the best day ever!”

Event Planner:  The Day Of

Venue: Brewster Academy

Tent and Rentals: Exeter Events and Tents

Caterer: Capers Catering

Florist: F as in Flowers

Lighting: DesignLight

Band: Beantown

Photographer: Armor & Martel

Videographer: Armor & Martel

Cake: Ohh La La

Transportation: Feliciano Limo

Hair and Makeup: Stacey Frasca Studio 28

Wedding Gown: Monique Lhuillier

 

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Summer Weddings in New England

We New Englanders MUST love the change of seasons or we wouldn’t put up with some of the crazy weather we encounter!  The first time leaves begin to change. The first snowfall. The first budding flowers. But SUMMER, oh sweet summer. It’s the season most of us await with wide, open arms!  Many summer weddings in New England are outdoors and with an outdoor weddings comes some inevitable factors to consider.  Here are my top ten recommendations for the all around comfort of you and your guests.

1. Ceremony Location – Consider the location that the ceremony is taking place.  If it’s not on the ocean, offering a comfortable breeze, consider a shady spot. The early evening is also preferable since it is not as hot. Nobody wants to be a sweaty mess for the evening!

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2. Indoor Ceremony Option – Let’s face it, half the reason people choose to get married in the summer is for the outdoor ceremony. But, bottom line, you have to be the kind of person willing to go with the flow if things go the other way and the dreaded R.A.I.N comes your way.  Having a very well thought out, realistic, plan B will offer you peace of mind.

3. Sound System – This is a must have for all outdoor ceremonies. You can’t hear a THINK without it. Be sure to test it out before the ceremony for volume and feedback and always have a sound person onsite incase of unforeseen glitches!

4. Welcome Table – I am always in favor of a welcome table at a ceremony. Include some cool and refreshing (alcohol free) beverages such as cucumber water or lemonade. Some other things to consider are fans, or even programs that double as fans, and maybe even parasols to offer additional shade or to protect against a possible sprinkle (not downpour).

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5. Bug Repellant – You want your guests to enjoy themselves (which they can’t be if they are getting eaten alive). They will be eternally grateful to find bug spray, wipes or lotion.

6. Umbrellas – Nobody wants them, but in a rainstorm  you and your guests will be completely frustrated without them…so just get them! Plus, they make for some super cut photos!

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7.  Food – Keep it light, seasonal, fresh and interesting!

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8. Placecards – If they are going to be outside, you are going to need to be a little creative…or else they might blow away!  They could be rocks in sand or cards pinned to a board…whatever they are, always consider the possibility of a windy day in the back of your mind!

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9. Centerpieces – To continue the stream of thought with regards to wind…I would suggest steering clear of anything tall or lightweight. No crashing over centerpieces, please!

10. Air – Be it fans or air conditioning…if it’s a hot summer night, it’s something to consider! Be sure to reserve ahead of time with your tent company.

 

 

Liz + Mike – Battery Wharf Hotel, Boston, MA

In 2011, Liz and Mike went on a blind date which was set up by Mike’s sister. How cute is that?   Little did they know their first date, for which they lost track of time during the 12 hours they spent together, would result in an engagement and marriage!  Neither of them grew up in this area but established themselves from college onward.  Boston became a special place to both of them, as they got to know each other, and during their dating days.

Since they aren’t from Boston,  that meant 90% of their friends and family were coming from out of town.  The city they love and were laying their foundation in meant so much to them that they wanted to be sure that their friends and family not only enjoyed the wedding weekend but enjoyed Boston. And yes, we made a special stop to Mike’s Pastry so all the out of owners could experience Mike’s!

They were married at their church in Charlestown and were fortunate enough to have been married by their Pastor, Father Ronan, in a very warm and personal ceremony.  Following the ceremony, the bridal party took photos including one of their favorite parts of the city, the North End.  Then they joined their guests for an outdoor cocktail hour overlooking the water and taking in the beautiful views.

The Battery Wharf Hotel is perfect for a more intimate wedding, filling the room at around 130 guests.  It’s extremely private and unique because it’s on the basement level of the hotel and the dinner and dance spaces are separate…in a very good way.  Here, all formalities and dinner happen at once and then guests move across the way for dancing and dessert in a room with ceilings so  high the skylight above the dance floor  is actually on the street level of the hotel.   Everyone was beaming and nobody can say it better than Liz herself…so read on and be sure to view the gorgeous photos below!

A few words from Liz:

Mike and I feel overjoyed and incredibly blessed as we reminisce about our wedding. It was so special to have friends and family come from near and far to celebrate the beginning of our life together. During those many months of planning all the tiny details from lighting to seat assignments and music, it was hard to see how it would truly all come together. On our wedding day, to my surprise, we were both at ease knowing that “our day” was here and all that mattered were the “I do’s!”  We had the attitude that what would happen, would happen and if any mistake was made, it would make a funny story. Lo and behold… we didn’t have a funny story–all of our amazing vendors pulled through to make our day incredibly special. The day was flawless in our eyes and if anything went wrong, we didn’t notice!  The ceremony was so personalized by our church priest  and the music was beautiful. Our flowers were gorgeous and the lighting was warm and romantic. Our venue was intimate and incredibly supportive. It was a stunning location on the Harbor; the staff and service was top notch. The food was outstanding. Our band was out of this world (so much that our guests still talk about it!)–we were out on the dance floor all night. And our photographer  captured it all perfectly. Michelle and her team at “The Day Of” were pivotal in making sure everything was orchestrated as planned and that all the vendors had the support they needed to get their job done and well. It was so nice knowing that we could be participants in our wedding and not have to worry about the “What ifs”; we were even able to eat our dinner with our guests! We want to relive our wedding day all over again. As we approach our one year anniversary, we cannot help but be filled with gratitude for where we have come and excitement for what lies ahead. Our first year of marriage has been eventful with new jobs, a new home, a new puppy and Mike’s MBA graduation from BC. We look forward to celebrating our 1 year anniversary on our belated honeymoon in Mexico!

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Ceremony: St. Mary –  St. Catherine of Siena Parish

Reception: Battery Wharf Hotel

Ceremony Music: Blissful Sounds

Cocktail Hour Music: Matt Browne

Reception Music: Boss – Wilson Stevens

Photographer: Melissa Robotti Photography

Florist: Madison Floral

Cake: Cakes for All Occasions

Desserts: Mike’s Pastry

Hair and Make Up: Kerri Marie Hair & Make Up Artistry

Bride and Groom Transportation: Rockstar Limo