Edel and William’s Bow Bridge Elopement

EW Bow Bridge Central Park Elopement Wedding

Irish couple Edel and William were the first couple to take us up on our new elopement wedding package. Edel first contacting me in March, they booked their flights towards the end of April and they got married at the end of May, so the whole process took a little over two months.

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Edel and William met almost eleven years ago on New Year’s Day in local pub. They got engaged at Christmas in 2016. Their wedding took place on Bow Bridge with just the two of them. Our elopement package comes with one hour of photography so their photographer was their witness.

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They had been thinking of getting married close to their home in Ireland in December but in the end they decided that eloping suited them better. They had considered Spain and Italy but chose New York because they hadn’t been before and it was a city that had always wanted to visit. “We emailed yourself at Wed in Central Park and straight away you were so helpful,” said Edel. The ease of planning a wedding in New York compared to Spain or Italy helped them make the decision!

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On the morning of the wedding, heavy rain was forecast for the afternoon, so we decided to have a change of plan and move the location of the ceremony to be underneath Bethesda Terrace. Our photographer met them at the entrance to the park and walked in with them, and in the end, the rain held off and they were able to get married on Bow Bridge and enjoy the lovely view from there as planned.

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We kept the ceremony short and sweet for the couple. “We chose Bow Bridge for our ceremony location as it just looked so beautiful overlooking the Lake,” said Edel. And it didn’t disappoint in the day.

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They kept the elopement a secret, “we told our families when we came back to Ireland,” Edel told me. “They couldn’t have been happier for us,” she said. I asked Edel how we did and she said that we all made their low-key relaxed elopement extra special. “The lovely lady who performed the ceremony made us so relaxed, and the photographer who was also our witness was fantastic, a very big thank you to you all,” she said.

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If you would like me to help you with planning your own Central Park wedding, large or small, visit our website, or follow us on Pinterest, “like” us on Facebook, and follow us on Instagram for photos of happy newlywed couples.

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Bateaux New York River Cruises

A very popular option for many of our clients following their wedding in Central Park is an evening river cruise with their party. It’s a great way to combine drinks, food, music and celebrating with some sightseeing. A cruise around the end of Manhattan at sunset is a wonderful way to see the city.

Bateaux New York River Cruise after a Wedding in Central Park
I was lucky enough to be gifted a sunset cruise from Bateaux New York River Cruises with a friend in May. The moment we walked on to the vessel we were warmly welcomed by our wonderful host. The tables are within the glass-enclosed deck, so a party can enjoy the beautiful views whatever the weather. We were seated beside the window; there are tables alongside the window as well as inside the deck, and it’s possible to reserve a table beside the window for uninterrupted views. The ships are very flexible when it comes to seating. Tables for two, four and larger groups can be arranged to suit almost every party and occasion.

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Bateaux New York have several vessels, they have a 360 degree tour on their website to give you a good idea of the space you and your party can expect to be in. Some of them have better accessibility than others, so contact them if you have any members of your party who may require assistance when on board. There will of course be other guests aboard the yacht, so you would be sharing the space for your wedding reception, but smart attire is encouraged for these cruises, so the other guests won’t be bring down your aesthetic!

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Our waiter was friendly, helpful and attentive. The courses were an amuse-bouche, appetiser, main and dessert. We selected the courses all in one go from a menu and they came with long pauses in between. They do this so that guests can eat a course and then go outside to enjoy the views as they pause in the middle of their meal. They permit smoking on these outdoor decks. If you have any dietary restrictions in your party, be sure to inform them when you make your booking.

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As we made our meal selections a professional photographer made her rounds of the tables. When our couples get married in Central Park, sometimes they go to a location in Midtown on the way to Chelsea Piers to take photos along the way. Then their photographer might come with them to capture some photos as they board the vessel. Keep in mind that there will also be a photographer on board to capture your party once you have set sail.

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First, the yacht travels down the Hudson and around the tip of Manhattan, quite close to the Statue of Liberty as the sun begins to set, and then up the East River. We sailed up to the Brooklyn Bridge and were able to take lots of photos there as the sun began to set. Then we went back down the East River and over to Liberty Island just as the sun set right behind the Statue of Liberty, so she looked naturally lit up. Then we ate our main course as it went dark all around us and the lights of Manhattan lit up. Check out some of their example menus.

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I quite often get motion sickness. It was terrible as a child and not much better as an adult! I was a bit unsure about drinking quite a lot of champagne and eating a meal on a boat on a river, but it was fine! Bateaux New York operates only inside New York Harbor, on the Hudson River and the East River, which are both very calm bodies of water. What’s more, the ship is very stable, so I could hardly tell that we were moving.

We were entertained during our trip by a quartet and singer – belting out all the classics you’d expect while enjoying the views of New York City from the river. Towards the end of the evening, some guests got up and danced, so I’d expect them to be happy to accommodate any requests when it comes to a newlywed couple’s first dance.

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Myself and my friend are both moms to small kids and we enjoyed our rare night off! We each have two kids under six so they would not have been allowed on the dinner cruise. If you have young kids in your party, consider a Spirit cruise or a lunchtime cruise. Children under 3 are complimentary on the lunch and brunch cruises, and a discount is offered for children between the ages of 3 and 12.

When booking a cruise for a party, you can choose to include alcoholic drinks or to have a cash bar, water and tea and coffee are included in the price of the meal. We were lucky enough to have drinks included in our cruise, so we enjoyed champagne all night. Or glasses were topped up frequently by our lovely waiter. Before we ate our dessert we were invited up to the top deck to meet the Captain’s first officer and enjoy the views from a higher vantage point, with another glass of champagne! I expect this treatment would also be offered to newlywed couples!

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Bateaux New York river cruise prices vary depending on day of the week and time of day. Prices are higher on weekends, so if you’re visiting New York from another country as many of my clients are, then it’s worth considering marrying on a weekday to make big savings. The evening cruises are most popular with my couples, and they board from 6:15pm and cruise from 7pm until 10pm.

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Call 866-817-3463 or use their online booking system to book your cruise, either on the evening of your wedding, or as a nice activity to share with your party in advance of the wedding day. Please note that the photos in this post are far from professional standard.  They are taken by myself or my friend with a camera phone, after a long day in the sunshine attending a client’s beautiful wedding in Central Park, and also after drinking an increasing quantity of champagne as the sky gets darker!

If you would like me to help you with planning your own Central Park wedding, no matter what you decide to do to celebrate in the evening, visit our website, or follow us on Pinterest, “like” us on Facebook, and follow us on Instagram for lots photos of newlywed couples in New York.

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Carolanne and Christopher’s May Wedding in the Ladies’ Pavilion

Real Central Park Wedding C&C

Carolanne and Christopher brought twenty-two guests over to New York from their home in Glasgow, Scotland to get married in Central Park this May. Carolanne is 30, Christopher is 33. They met at a family party but didn’t actually start dating until a couple of years later when they happened to meet again, “everything just clicked into place for us,” said Carolanne. So they had been together for eleven years before they got married.

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The couple got engaged in December 2017 in Central Park. They were visiting New York on vacation (or a holiday as the Brits call is) and they were walking around beautiful Central Park. They were on Bow Bridge, which was a place that Carolanne had always wanted to visit. “I noticed Christopher going into his pocket and knew what he was up to – I suspected on the journey over because he was acting all nervous,” said Carolanne. “I panicked as soon as I saw the ring because there were so many people around and I didn’t want everyone looking at us,” she laughed. “After my momentary freak out Christopher popped the question,” she continued. And of course that lead to them deciding to marry in this incredible city.

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“We always wanted to get married but knew there was never a rush,” Carolanne told me. “We’ve enjoyed our years together and felt like after ten years it was the natural next step to take in our lives together,” she said. They discussed having a traditional big Scottish wedding at home, but not for long. They knew very early on that it was not for them. They also considered the popular European destinations that people visit to get married, but they didn’t feel quite right either. They started to consider returning to New York for their wedding. They consider Central Park a beautiful location to make these promises to each other, “and New York is a city we both love,” Carolanne told me. “Our wedding trip was actually our fourth visit to New York together. We loved the idea that our guests that came with us could experience this city we love so much,” she said. I love the idea of sharing this city that has such special significance to them with their nearest and dearest as a way to celebrate their love.

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I asked them if they had had any concerns about the wedding, and Carolanne did worry a little about things running smoothly on the day. In the end she arrived forty minutes late to her wedding, and we know it’s not uncommon for a bride to be late to her wedding! “Everything still went perfectly,” she said. We do try to build in a little extra time to allow for this possibility but our photographers are so experienced they can have a quick re-think and skip some photo locations if necessary.

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Carolanne and Christopher stayed in the Broadway Plaza Hotel in Midtown, they picked this hotel purposely for its big rooms (a rare thing in Midtown hotels!). “I got ready in a massive room with two double beds which was perfect for getting hair and make-up done with four other people, and of course getting my wedding dress on,” Carolanne explained. She actually stayed in New York for eight days; she came early and had a bachelorette party with her friends, while Christopher went to Boston with his friends for his bachelor party before they headed down to New York to join the ladies. So, Christopher was in New York for five days.

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The wedding ceremony took place in the Ladies’ Pavilion. I asked them where their favorite photos were taken, “we loved all of our pictures and it’s so hard to pick, but we would have to go for the pictures taken in Brooklyn Bridge Park,” Carolanne told me. It’s such a popular location to take photos, but takes 45-60 minutes to get there from Central Park. We’re also getting lots of enquiries recently about having the wedding ceremony in Brooklyn Bridge Park. “Having that Manhattan skyline as a backdrop is not something we see every day,” said Carolanne. That’s certainly true, unless you’re lucky enough to live close to Brooklyn Bridge Park!

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We kept the ceremony fairly short and sweet – that was what the couple wanted. “We decided to go with the traditional vows as it suited us better,” said Carolanne. The officiant spoke about the couple’s relationship up to that point in the introduction, and mentioned many of the couple’s family members by name to thank them or remember loved ones no longer with us. They also added a personal touch by having their friend Nadine read a poem which she had written herself, “that made the ceremony even more special to us,” said Carolanne.

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Carolanne wore an ivory wedding dress from Morilee, and she carried pink and white roses. Carolanne’s dress had been bought from Pamela Jayne’s Bridal in Glasgow. Her maid of honor’s dress was bought from Wed2B in Glasgow. They were both packed up for traveling on the plane.

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The couple had decided to have only immediate family and close friends at the wedding, so we had twenty-two guests in total. “Some people had been a little sceptical about it and how it was all going to work out,” Carolanne told me, “but after the wedding, they all told us that they had had such an amazing day,” she said. “Everyone said they had the best day ever and me and Christopher were so grateful that they all made the effort to come witness us becoming Mr and Mrs,” she said.

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After the ceremony, they went around Central Park for more photos, and then all got on a vintage trolley bus at the Dakota. It took them over to Brooklyn Bridge Park, then to Times Square for some more photos. Their reception dinner was held at Blue Smoke, “it was just fantastic,” said Carolanne, “the family style dining on the mezzanine was perfect, I would highly recommend this place for a wedding, it was a great atmosphere and all the diners cheered and clapped for us when we got there which was so nice,” she said. After dinner they had reserved an area of the Monarch Rooftop Bar, “it was just the icing on the cake of a perfect day,” Carolanne told me, “the view of the Empire State Building was amazing from there,” she added.

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I asked her how we did, and Carolanne said “Claire, you were great, you guided us on everything we needed and we couldn’t have done it without you. We would highly recommend you to anyone thinking of getting married in New York.” Thanks so much for your kind words, Carolanne, and thank you for sharing your story with us. Finally, I asked Carolanne if they had any regrets about choosing not to have a traditional wedding close to home as they had originally considered, “no regrets at all” she said, “best decision we ever made.”

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I asked Carolanne what she thinks in general about destination weddings, “I think destination weddings are amazing,” she said. “It was the best choice we could have made. It was such a great experience for us and our guests and we would 100% recommend it to our friends and family,” she added. I asked if she had any advice for anyone else considering a wedding in Central Park and she said “we are just so happy we made the choice to get married in Central Park, and if anyone is thinking about it and not 100% sure we say DO IT!” I’d say that is excellent advice.

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If you would like me to help you with planning your own Central Park wedding, large or small, visit our website, or follow us on Pinterest where we pin all things New York or wedding-related, “like” us on Facebook, and follow us on Instagram for beautiful photos of newlywed couples.

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The Ring Exchange in your Wedding Ceremony – Ideas on What to Say

My favorite part of the wedding ceremony is the ring exchange.  It’s the big finale.  It’s the part where the couple symbolizes the promises they have just made to each other with a physical token of their commitment.  In my experience, the most common thing that couples say to each other as they exchange rings is:

“With this ring I thee wed, as a symbol of my love and commitment to you.”  They repeat it after the officiant as they place the ring on their spouse’s finger.  It is in keeping with tradition, and I think that it is a concise summary of what it is.  I like to keep things short and sweet.  Personally, I didn’t want to say very much during my own wedding ceremony, it was all too overwhelming.  Some people want to say something more unique when they exchange rings, and something that reflects them as a couple.  Here are some idea of what to say as you exchange rings with your loved one.

wedding ceremony ring exchange

I give you this ring to wear
As a symbol of my abiding love,
My eternal faith, and my undying devotion.
It is an outward reminder of our inner unity.

As I place this ring on your finger, its perfect symmetry is a symbol of our perfect love. It has no beginning and no ending, a symbol of the eternal commitment we have made to each other today.

[Name], I give you this ring
As a symbol of my love for you,
And of my promise to honor you,
Comfort you,
And be faithful to you and to our marriage
Through God’s grace, (Alternatively: Line may be omitted)
For as long as we both shall live.

With this ring, I marry you and bind my life to yours.
It is a symbol of my eternal love,
My everlasting friendship,
And the promise of all my tomorrows.

This ring is the visible evidence of our invisible love; it symbolizes the joining of our spirits in sacred holy matrimony.
This ring I give you
Is a symbol of my love.
I pledge to share with you my heart,
My home, and all of my worldly goods.

As a sign of my love
And my knowledge that in marrying you,
I am becoming much more than I am,
I give you this ring
With the promise that I will love you
And keep my heart open to you
All the days of my life.

With this ring, I marry you:
With my loving heart.
With my willing body.
And with my eternal soul.

I give you this ring
As a sign that I choose you
To be my lover, my partner,
And my best friend
Today, tomorrow, and always.

I offer my vow to you in the form of this ring,
so that my word and my love,
will always be with you,
close to your heart

This ring I give to you as a token of my love and devotion to you. I pledge to you all that I am and all that I will ever be as your (husband/wife). With this ring, I gladly marry you and join my life to yours.

With the ring, I give you my promise
That from this day forward
You shall not walk alone.
May my heart be your shelter
And my arms be your home.

As a sign of my love for you,
of choosing to share my whole life’s journey with you,
and of my knowing that in marrying you
I shall become much more than I am,
I give you this ring, with the pledge
That with you, I shall become my highest expression of God,
Sharing the gifts that I have and I am with you and the world.

I give you this ring as a symbol of my love for you. Let it be a reminder that I am always by your side and that I will always be a faithful partner to you.

I give you this ring
as a reminder
that I will love, honor, and cherish you,
In all times,
In all places,
And in all ways, forever.

[Name], this ring is a symbol
Of the strength and beauty of our love.
May it belong to your hand
As my heart belongs to you,
Separate yet close,
Simple yet miraculous.

I give you this ring to wear with love and joy. As a ring has no end, neither shall my love for you.  I choose you to be my wife/husband this day and forevermore.

With this ring
I marry you
and join my life with yours.
Accept this ring
as a sign of my love and faithfulness
for all the years to come.

wedding ring exchange

If I am helping you to plan your wedding in Central Park then I will work with you to write your ceremony for you and your partner.  Part of this is advising what the officiant and what the couple should say, and what suits you as a couple.  Sometimes couples might want to read something out to each other that they have prepared.  I wouldn’t suggest doing this for the ring exchange – your hands will be on their hand as you place the ring on their finger, so you can’t hold anything to read out!

Here are my thoughts on writing your own marriage vows.  I don’t suggest trying to memorize anything for your wedding day, because you never know if nerves will take you.  So, this part you would very likely need to repeat after the officiant.  So, keep that in mind when you think about saying it to each other.  Some couples may also want to add in some unique alternative vows to the traditional love, honor and cherish.  Here are my top twenty wedding readings and poems.

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Marc and David’s Autumn Conservatory Gardens Wedding

Central Park Wedding M&D

Marc and David brought six of their friends over from their home in the UK to get married in Central Park in November. They had been together for eleven years before they got married, they met on a night out in Cardiff. David was out with his brother Andy, Marc out with his friend Geraint. They met at a bus stop and clicked with one another. A few days later they went out on a proper first date and within a week they had moved in together and have been together ever since. Since then they added their two dogs, Bella and Cane to the family.

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They flew in on Halloween so they got to experience the fun of the parade and the streets of New York with everyone dressed up. They got their license the following day and got married on the 2nd. After their stay in New York they went on to Las Vegas to continue their adventure.

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Their original choice for their ceremony location was Wagner Cove but it wasn’t available due to the area being closed off for around a week. It was because they needed to set up for the New York Marathon which was coming through that part of the park. They were not issuing permits for any part of the park below 86th Street, which is most of the park, so we had to look at the north end.

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Marc and David decided on the Burnett Fountain in the Conservatory Gardens. The Central Park Conservancy charge a far higher fee for this area, and it’s right up at 105th Street, so it’s quite a walk from there to the more well-known areas of Central Park. On the other hand, it’s a beautiful and quiet area with lovely gardens. Few tourists make it up this far, although of course you’ll see more locals at this end of the park.

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After the ceremony they walked through the park with our photographer and officiant, taking photos as they went. A lovely spot on the route from the Conservatory Gardens to the center area of the park is the Reservoir, so they took advantage of the opportunity to take some pictures there.

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The all-male wedding party made an incredibly dapper group. They all wore matching suits, with Marc and David with tails on their jackets. If you look closely, you’ll see that the couple had slightly different vests (or waistcoats for British readers) with pinks ties and pocket squares, with white boutonnieres, and their party had grey ties and pink boutonnieres.

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Later on, they all took photos at Bethesda Terrace and Bow Bridge. So many couples worry about the weather when getting married at this time of year, but as Autumn turns to Winter New York often sees some beautiful sunny (but fairly cold!) days. They also just about caught some of the Fall colors on the trees. After all that, they went on to the Tavern on the Green to have a rest and to celebrate, and our photographer popped in to take a few pictures inside before she left.

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If you would like me to help you with planning your own Central Park wedding, whatever the time of year, visit our website, for more information. Everyone in our team welcomes same-sex couples, and if you prefer a gay officiant and/or photographer then please let me know and I can arrange that for you.

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You can also “like” us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and follow us on Pinterest where we pin all things New York or wedding-related.

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Alternative Wedding Ceremony Promises

When I write ceremonies for couples as part of helping them to plan their wedding in Central Park, there is usually a part where the officiant says something along the lines of; “Do you take him/her and promise to do these things under all circumstances, forever?” and each of the couple says “I do”.  More specifically, it tends to be something similar to this:

[Name], do you take [Name] to be your husband/wife; to live together in the covenant of marriage?  Do you promise to love him, comfort him, honor and keep him, for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, to share his thoughts, hopes and dreams; forsaking all others and to be faithful only to him, so long as you both shall live?

Then the bride or groom simply says “I do”.  It’s the classic part of a wedding ceremony, and it does the job.  Sometimes couples don’t want to say that, or they do want to say that, or something similar, but also make other affirmations, where they want to make promises more specific to them as a couple.  Here are a few of my suggestions.

alternative wedding ceremony promises

I, [Name], take you, [Name], to be my (lawfully wedded) husband/wife, secure in the knowledge that you will be my constant friend, my faithful partner in life, and my one true love.

On this special day, I (affirm/give) to you in the presence of God and all those in attendance my (pledge/sacred promise) to stay by your side as your (faithful) husband/wife in sickness and in health, in joy and in sorrow, as well as through the good times and the bad.

I promise to love you without reservation, comfort you in times of distress, encourage you to achieve all of your goals, laugh with you and cry with you, grow with you in mind and spirit, always be open and honest with you, and cherish you for as long as we both shall live.

I, [Name], take you, [Name], to be my (lawfully wedded) husband/wife, knowing in my heart that you will be my constant friend, my faithful partner in life, and my one true love. On this special and holy day, I (affirm/give) to you in the presence of God and all those in attendance my (pledge/sacred promise) to stay by your side as your faithful husband/wife in sickness and in health, in joy and in sorrow, as well as through the good times and the bad.

“I, [Name], take you, [Name], to be my wedded husband/wife, and in doing so, I commit my life to you, encompassing all sorrows and joys, all hardships and triumphs, all the experiences of life. A commitment made in love, kept in faith, lived in hope, and eternally made new.”

I promise to love you without reservation, honor and respect you, provide for your needs as best I can, protect you from harm, comfort you in times of distress, grow with you in mind and spirit, always be open and honest with you, and cherish you for as long as we both shall live.

[Name], I promise to love and care for you and I will try in every way to be worthy of your love.
I will always be honest with you, kind, patient, and forgiving. But most of all, I promise to be a true and loyal friend to you. I love you.

I [Name], take you [Name], to be my husband/wife, to share the good times and hard times side by side. I humbly give you my hand and my heart as I pledge my faith and love to you. Just as this ring I give you today is a circle without end, my love for you is eternal. Just as it is made of incorruptible substance, my commitment to you will never fail. With this ring, I thee wed.”

I [Name], take you [Name], to be my husband/wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish; from this day forward until death do us part.

I, [Name], take you, [Name], to be my husband/wife, my constant friend, my faithful partner and my love from this day forward. In the presence of God, our family and friends, I offer you my solemn vow to be your faithful partner in sickness and in health, in good times and in bad, and in joy as well as in sorrow. I promise to love you unconditionally, to support you in your goals, to honor and respect you, to laugh with you and cry with you, and to cherish you for as long as we both shall live.

I [Name], take you [Name] to be my husband/wife, my partner in life and my one true love. I will cherish our union and love you more each day than I did the day before. I will trust you and respect you, laugh with you and cry with you, loving you faithfully through good times and bad, regardless of the obstacles we may face together. I give you my hand, my heart, and my love, from this day forward for as long as we both shall live.

I, [Name], take you, [Name], to be my husband/wife, loving what I know of you, and trusting what I do not yet know. I eagerly anticipate the chance to grow together, getting to know the (man/woman) you will become, and falling in love a little more every day. I promise to love and cherish you through whatever life may bring us.

[Name], I take you as you are, loving who you are now and who you are yet to become, I promise from this day forward. To be grateful for our love and our life. To be generous with my time, my energy and my affection. To be patient with you and with myself. To fill our life with adventure and our home with laughter. To encourage you to grow as an individual, and inspire you to do so. To love you completely. These things I pledge before you, our friends and our family.

“I, [Name], take you, [Name], to be my husband/wife. I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love you and honor you all the days of my life.”

“I, [Name], take you to be my lawfully wedded husband/wife. Before these witnesses I vow to love you and care for you as long as both shall live. I take you with all your faults and your strengths as I offer myself to you with my faults and strengths. I will help you when you need help, and I will turn to you when I need help. I choose you as the person with whom I will spend my life.”

[Name], I promise to love you, to be your best friend, to respect and support you, to be patient with you, to work together with you to achieve our goals, to accept you unconditionally, and to share life with you throughout the years.

[Name], I take you to be my wife/husband from this time onward, to join with you and to share all that is to come, to be your faithful husband/wife, to give and to receive, to speak and to listen, to inspire and to respond; a commitment made in love, kept in faith, and eternally made new.

“I, [Name], take you, [Name], to be my wedded husband/wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, according to God’s holy ordinance; and thereto I give thee my troth.”

“I take you, [Name], to be my husband/wife from this day forward, to join with you and share all that is to come, and I promise to be faithful to you until death parts us.”

“Let us take the fourth step, to acquire knowledge, happiness, and harmony by mutual love and trust. Finally, let us take the seventh step and become true companions and remain lifelong partners by this wedlock.”

[Name], do you pledge to love [Name] and throughout your years together to be honest, faithful, and kind to her/him? Do you pledge to give to her/him the same happiness she/he gives to you, and to respect her for who she is, not who you want her to be? (each responds, “I do.”)

[Name], with all my love, I take you to be my wife/husband. I will love you through good and the bad, through joy and the sorrow. I will try to be understanding, and to trust in you completely. Together we will face all of life’s experiences and share one another’s dreams and goals. I promise I will be your equal partner in an loving, honest relationship, for as long as we both shall live.

 


 

If I am helping you to plan your wedding in Central Park then I will work with you to write your ceremony for you and your partner.  Part of this process is to advise what the officiant and what the couple should say, and what suits you as a couple.  We would work out what order everything should go in to flow properly.  A few weeks ago I posted my thoughts on writing your own wedding vows, so have a look at that if you think that’s something you might want to do.  In a little while I’ll post some alternatives on what to say when you exchange wedding rings.  And some time ago I posted twenty wedding readings and poems that I like or that my couples have used previously.

Follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and pin along with us on Pinterest to keep updated with what we’re up to on your social media platform of choice!

 

 

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Claire and Brett’s Wedding under the Angel of the Waters at Bethesda Fountain

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Claire and Brett met in 2010 through their shared hobby of playing squash.  They got together a year later and got married in May by Bethesda Fountain.  They brought thirty-three guests from their home in Kent, England to the wedding; quite a large group by our standards.

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The Fountain is set in the center of a large paved area.  It has the famous arches and the steps that lead up to the terrace at one end and the Lake begins at the other, with a view over to the Boathouse.  On either side are two lawn areas, one larger than the other, both on a slight hill.  Our original plan was for the wedding to take place on the larger lawn area, but we discovered that the Central Park Conservancy were reseeding the lawn at the time of their wedding so we were unable to use it.  So the ceremony took place right next to the Fountain.

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Rather than walk down the stone steps from the terrace to the Fountain to make her entrance, Claire chose a more leisurely pathway that snakes around at a slight decline to bring a pedestrian to the lower level without taking any steps down.  This made for a dramatic entrance as they appeared between the tall trees.

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Claire’s bouquet was a stunning “brooch bouquet” made from dark red silk, silk flowers, brooches, fine jewellery, and lace.  These are a wonderful alternative to a traditional floral bouquet, not least because the bride gets to keep it!

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The bride, groom and officiant stood next to the Fountain with their guests standing around them.  The Fountain is a busy spot in Central Park, but having thirty-three of their nearest and dearest encircling them must have made the ceremony feel more private.  Our officiant read the poem “A Miracle” by Debbie Pottinger during the ceremony, which I’ve posted below.

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After the photos in Central Park, they all got on the vintage New York Trolley Bus for a two-hour scenic route around Manhattan.  The trolley bus allows riders to bring drinks on board so this served as their mobile reception.

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After the bus, they took the Staten Island ferry over to Staten Island for their reception meal at the River Dock Café, which has an outdoor terrace with stunning views of downtown Manhattan.

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If you think you might like some help with planning your own Central Park wedding, visit our website. “Like” us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and follow us on Pinterest.

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“A Miracle” by Debbie Pottinger

At first I thought we would just be friends.
A little did we know, our friendship would bend
To a love that’s so big for the world to see
that you and me are meant to be.

Sun or snow, rain or shine
forever, forever you will be mine
Mine for me, mine to be
Mine for all eternity.

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