Steph and Shannon came from their home in Melbourne, Australia in December to get married in Central Park.
They had met in the Spring of 2004 but did not get together until October of that year. So, by the time they got married they had been together for a little over ten years. Shannon proposed on Steph’s birthday in July 2014. Steph had thought that it was never going to happen! They have a son, Carlisle who will be two years old in May of this year. As a couple, they had never considered marriage as such an important thing for them to do. They felt that they had already made the biggest commitment that a person can make to another person, in their son. But they said that over the past few years they had started to feel like marriage was the next step in their relationship.
They had discussed getting married near their home in Melbourne but they could not find any options that really interested them, “nothing that really seemed to fit us,” as Steph put it. They had taken a trip to New York a few years previously and loved the city. So, they decided that it would be the perfect city for them to get married, “because we both loved it so much and wanted to go back so desperately,” it was not a difficult decision.
They had been privately planning to get married in New York for a few months before they decided to let their immediate family know their plans so that if they wanted to come along, they had time to save up and come. They had considered City Hall for a ceremony locations, but the thought of having their families coming all that way, and possibly have them wait for hours in City Hall for their turn to come up ruled that out for Steph and Shannon. They started to look at the ceremony locations in Central Park and they saw pictures of Bethesda Terrace and they decided that would be their wedding location.
Steph and Shannon’s trip was a mammoth two months long. It was a combined vacation, wedding and honeymoon all rolled in to one. They visited Dubai, Zurich, Rome, Naples, Florence, Venice, Amsterdam, Paris and London before touching down in New York City. They had their wedding in Central Park on the 10th December then, flew out on the 12th to Dallas for a road trip through Texas and Lousiana then flew back to New York in time for Christmas, they spent a few days in LA and then came home! Phew! All with their toddler in tow! Their parents and Steph’s brother joined them for their wedding.
I asked them if they had any concerns about getting married in Central Park. Steph and Shannon did not get married through Wed in Central Park so they did not have any support in finding out what paperwork they needed to legally be married as Australian citizens. They need to go along in person to City Hall with their passports. Then, as with British citizens, City Hall will see to it that once they are married they will be sent the Apostille to go along with the extended marriage certificate in order to be legally registered as married. For more information on the marriage license application process, please check my blog about it.
Their other concern was the most common one that I hear from couples; the weather. This is an unavoidable one when getting married outdoors, although there are a few spots in Central Park that can provide some shelter from the rain for a ceremony. “The day before the wedding it was raining, and not just any rain, it was pouring,” said Steph. They got completely soaked through at their ceremony run-through at Bethesda Terrace, “we just stood there and thought, what have we done, this is all ruined. But the day was perfect! The rain stopped.” They were lucky that they had chosen the 10th and not the 9th for their wedding day.
Since Steph and Shannon were staying in New York with their toddler son, they booked an apartment through Airbnb. They found a place that met all their needs in Brooklyn that was close to the subway, supermarkets, restaurants, good coffee and friendly people, so they were completely happy with it.
They love their pictures, taken by Jasmine Photo, taken at Bethesda Terrace, they also went on to the Rockerfeller Centre, St Patrick’s Cathedral and Times Square for other photographs. After the photos they all went to the Bull and Bear Steakhouse at The Waldorf Astoria. “Best steak I have ever had in my life! And the staff are amazing, and they even organized a wedding cake for us,” said Steph.
Steph loves vintage styles, so she felt sure that her dress had to be something a bit vintage looking. She went to bridal boutiques and could not justify the $3,000-$10,000 price tag for a dress she would only be wearing for a few hours. So she found a few styles that she liked and looked online and found a dress that was perfect for her; brand new and a combination of her two favorite dress styles and the bonus was that it cost $140. She had a vintage fur stole from the 20s in her closet which she had been dying to use for something and it worked perfectly with her dress once the dress had been adjusted to fit her. She found a pair of shoes that looked just like the Christian Louboutin Cinderella shoes that she had loved and that finished off the outfit. Steph carried a bouquet of pink peonies with red chillies in them for good luck. She had seen that all over Venice when they had visited the city earlier in their trip and she thought that was a nice touch to have some floral inspiration from their trip involved in their wedding.
Steph had her hair done by Appease, she was very happy with their work, despite having been a little nervous because she had not had a trial done before the wedding. Like me, she was quite horrified by the prices that many hair and makeup artists charge in New York but she felt that they were reasonably priced.
Finally, I asked them if they had any thoughts that they would like to share with anyone who might be considering having a destination wedding in Central Park. “Just do it, if you think you want to do it, just do it, it’s your day!” Good advice from Steph. Thanks for sharing your story with us, Steph and Shannon, and I hope you enjoy being back home and having a rest after such a long trip. I wish you lots of luck for your future together with each other and your family.