Big fancy weddings are so 2019. With COVID-19 canceling or cutting events down to size, engaged couples were forced to get creative with impromptu elopements and “micro-weddings” on sailboats, in backyards, around pools, on farms and more, with ceremonies Zoomed to faraway family and friends.
“The pandemic has caused people to reflect on what, and who, is really important in their lives, and to celebrate that joy,” says wedding vendor Jenny Marchese of Wildflower Events.
In our ongoing series, Northforker is spotlighting some of the sweetest micro-weddings on the East End.
The backyard wedding the rain couldn’t stop
“We had no idea how awesome the smoke bombs would be!”
Rose Horton, 30, a principal/director at St. David’s Preschool, and Melissa Edwards, 37, a physical education teacher at Wantagh Elementary school, live on the South Fork — but they say the North Fork has their heart. Their big backyard wedding got downsized to a small backyard wedding, but they didn’t mind. Part two will be held exactly one year later, on what is now their anniversary.
“We had originally planned a 130-person wedding at my parent’s house in Manorville for July 4th,” said Rose. “However, we ended up having a 25-person wedding at our home in Hampton Bays. Alongside our immediate families and a few of our closest friends (not to mention our Goldendoodle Baylee). We even had one of our best friends marry us.”
So maybe the micro-wedding wasn’t filled with loud music and dancing, but it was filled with overwhelming amounts of love. And rain! “It began pouring an hour before the ceremony began, but we popped up some tents and walked down the ‘aisle’ carrying rainbow umbrellas,” says Rose.
Food was 10 different gourmet pizzas from Francesca’s in Hampton Bays, while Rose’s mom—who professionally baked cakes for many years on Long Island—made the wedding cake.
Décor was minimalist and quaint, complete with candles, greenery, string lights and photos of the two from their years together. The pièce de résistance, however, was the colored smoke. “We initially planned to have our nieces and nephews each hold a different color, but because we changed around the whole day, we just lined the smoke bombs on a piece of wood,” she says. “We had NO idea how awesome it would be!”
Until next year’s wedding bash, “which may or may not include a renewal of vows but will definitely be creative,” Rose and Melissa will continue to enjoy the North Fork. “We may live in Hampton Bays, but NoFo is the home of our first date, our most favorite restaurant, Brix and Rye, and endless adventures that always end with a nightcap and game of darts at Sophie’s Rest. And of course, Kontokosta winery, where our engagement photos were taken.”