Monday, May 03, 2010

State College Road Trip #19: The Wedding

One more wedding is in the books. Congratulations, Kerrie and Dan!

For the other pictures I took during the wedding and reception (6 total), go here. These are the same pictures I posted on Twitter/Facebook during the wedding and reception in real time, so many of you have already seen them. Isn't real time picture posting neat? Especially for those of you who wanted to come to the wedding but couldn't (or weren't invited)? Also, yes, we forgot to bring Mo the Cow Puppet this time. No big deal, though, just as long as we remember to being Mo to Alaska.

This was the second wedding we attended in State College in a six-week period, so I think it's appropriate to do a "compare and contrast" between the Vic/Lindsay March 20th wedding and the Kerrie/Dan May 1st wedding.

The time of day: I've gone on record as saying that a 4:30 PM wedding start (as with Vic/Lindsay) is later than I'd like a wedding to start. Is 10:30 AM too early? Well...depends. If you're interested in a "party into the night" kind of wedding, 10:30 AM is much too early. Kerrie and Dan had no interest in creating a party wedding (more on that in the "reception" section), so for them, 10:30 AM was just fine. The early time also allowed people such as ourselves to drive back the same day, which was nice. Everything was completely over by 3:00 PM.

What I'm not sure about, however, is how Kerrie and Dan spent the rest of their day. When you have a mid or late afternoon start, it's simple: the bride and groom check into the hotel, [censored], and go to bed. When you leave the reception at 3:00 PM, what do you do the rest of the day? Did they leave for their honeymoon that same day? Did they go home and pack? I guess it's different when you have the wedding in your hometown.

The guest list: Despite the fact that both weddings involved at least one Penn State meteorology graduate, there was very little overlap in the guest list between the two weddings: only me, Amber, Jared, and Caren. That was it. So, it was nice to see a slightly different group of people. Also of note was that the meteorology contingent at this wedding was much, much smaller (one full table) than at the Vic/Lindsay wedding (three full tables?), which I can attribute to their desire to invite mostly family, and the fact that only one meteorology graduate was getting married instead of two.

The wedding ceremony: The Kerrie/Dan wedding was 5 to 10 minutes shorter than the Vic/Lindsay wedding. I think the main difference was that the Vic/Lindsay wedding had candle lighting; the Kerrie/Dan wedding did not. I still think the Kerrie/Dan wedding was longer than ours, though. Amber and I may have set the record for shortest Christian wedding ever.

I honestly don't remember Vic and Lindsay's wedding vows (sorry, guys), but the Kerrie/Dan wedding vows were particularly memorable, because they were personalized, and because they had a hard time keeping it together as they read them. Aww. Amber and I didn't mess around with personalized vows; we kept it traditional and boring.

The reception venue: I had never been to the State College Days Inn before. This is from inside the hotel:

Pretty neat, I thought. However, this was outside the reception hall; the reception itself was in a plain, uninspiring conference room. Oh well. I like where Amber and I had our reception: a lodge in the middle of the woods.

The reception itself: I have to mention this off the top. Just like at our wedding, they had macaroni and cheese in the buffet. Yay!

As for the rest of the reception...the rumor is that Kerrie did not want the reception to turn into a "big dance party". And, mission accomplished. How did they do it?

1) Aside from the champagne in the toast glasses, there was no alcohol at the reception. That's obviously a big help to keeping the amount of dancing to a minimum. (By the way, this isn't a complaint; given that we were driving back to North Carolina that day, I was not planning on drinking at the reception anyway. But for some people, no beer = no fun.) However, we had beer and liquor at our wedding, and it didn't turn into a big dance party, either, which brings me to #2:
2) Music choice. Kerrie and Dan had a live jazz band, which I thought was great. Amber and I did not have a live band, but we did request mostly "oldies"-style music. No Macarena, no electric slide, no Lady Gaga, none of that nonsense. (Note that the Vic/Lindsay reception had both alcohol and Lady Gaga, and hence, it did turn into a "big dance party".)
3) Leave early. This wedding was the first one I think I've ever been to where the bride and groom were among the first people to leave. Around 3:00 PM, the live band announced "final song!", Kerrie and Dan did their final dance, and they left post-haste. In a hurry, are we?

So, in summary, this was a much more laid back reception. There wasn't even a bouquet toss. Kerrie and Dan met at a Christian social group (is that the right term for it?), after all, so I guess that's appropriate. Again, that's not a complaint, simply a matter of fact. We had a good time, and it was great to see everyone again.

Finally, here's something I wish I thought of before our wedding. Usually, seating at the reception is assigned. You find your name on a card, and it tells you what table to sit at - for example, Table 11. As much as I like numbers, there's nothing exciting about "Table 11". Vic and Lindsay took it up a notch and instead of numbering the tables, they named the tables after places they've lived or visited. For example, our table was the "Grand Forks, North Dakota" table. In addition, each table had a story and picture associated with each place. I thought that was neat. What Amber and I should have done was number the tables just as we did, but instead of numbering 1, 2, 3, and so on, we should have used the numbers of various roads, and posted a road sign for that road at each table. For example, "Table ", "Table ", and "Table ". We could have even printed out cards that look like actual highway signs. For example, this card would mean that Amber and I are sitting at Table 99:

(sign courtesy SignMaker)

Definitely a missed opportunity on our part. Oh well. Any other road enthusiasts who are planning on getting married in the near future are free to steal this idea. (You know who you are.)

1 comment:

James Allen said...

Reception: Aquarium > All