It's been a while since I blogged and 3 weeks since I officiated a wedding. That is because this is the "slow" wedding season and the "high" booking of weddings season! I have been enjoying meeting with many couples for the past month and booking weddings even into 2010. It is not too early to start hiring your wedding vendors for 2010 so that you get your first choice!
Jeremy and Nicole contacted me back in September at the referral of Rabbi Andrew Ettin in Winston-Salem. Jeremy is of Jewish heritage and Nicole of Christian and they wanted both a rabbi and a minister to co-officiate their wedding on January 24, 2009 at Bay 7 of the American Tobacco Warehouse complex in Durham. Rabbi Ettin and I have worked together many times for interfaith couples like Jeremy and Nicole in the past 11 years. Jeremy and Nicole put together a lovely ceremony representing both faiths. It is always a pleasure to co-officiate these wonderful wedding ceremonies that are so rich with tradition and symbolism. They included a reading of First Corinthians and the Unity Candle representing the Christian faith. The Wine and 7 Blessings and the Breaking of the Glass represented the Jewish faith.
In the spacious venue of Bay 7, they married under a Chuppah placed on the landing of the stairs to the loft and both sets of parents stood with them and their 14 attendants, plus the sweet little flower girl, Megan, niece of Nicole. At 2 1/2 years of age, she did a better job than many I have seen who were older than she. She started down the aisle but stopped and threw the petals on the runner all in one place. When nudged forward by our capable wedding director, Michelle Aldred of Triangle Catering, Megan made it all the way down the aisle to her mother, Michelle, our Matron of Honor, and exclaimed "There are still some more flowers in the basket!" Then all our guests stood for the entrance of our beautiful bride and her father. Her mother joined them from the first row and Dad transferred Nicole's hand into Jeremy's. Then the couple ascended the steps to stand under the chuppah flanked by their parents. Rabbi Ettin and I stayed at floor level and faced the couple as the guests enjoyed their unique ceremony with a great view of the couple.
All went wonderfully well, but I must tell you that we narrowly escaped potential disaster! After the breaking of the glass, the kiss, and amidst cheers of Mazel Tov and applause, the couple swept down the aisle as the wedding party watched with bated breath and horror as Nicole's train skimmed over the two rows of votive candles lining the aisle. Had they stopped for a nanosecond, that fabric would have instantaneously gone up in flames and I need say no more as to what could have been tragic. (Please let this be a lesson to you brides planning your wedding--the aisle with a runner and rows of votives and flower petals was gorgeous, as you can see in the photos, but please make the aisle wide enough to avoid the bride's train and veil from coming close to the flames!)
After breathing sighs of relief, the wedding party recessed and I invited the guests to go up into the loft for cocktails while the ground floor was being "turned over" for the reception and photos were taken of the wedding party. Diane McKinney and her 2 or 3 assistants was our photographer. Ron K. Smith did the DJ honors for both the ceremony and the reception and provided our videographer, Mark Holland. Nicole and Jeremy were beaming and very pleased with how the ceremony went and looking forward to dancing the night away. They are both avid dancers. Their logo which was projected onto the brick wall (see photo) was made up of their first name initials and the music symbol for the treble clef. Very clever! They also used this logo on their beautiful wedding programs. Great job planning a spectacular wedding, Jeremy and Nicole. I wish you all the best!
By the way, Bay 7 is an awesome wedding venue! See their web site for great photos. Plenty of space, beautifully refinished hardwood floors perfect for dancing, a stunning screen to separate spaces, the loft and two sets of stairs and an elevator, outdoor terraces at both the entrance and the exit and a grand piano. This was my first time doing a wedding there and I can highly recommend it!