When Heather met Rick on her first day of work in 2009, she was impressed by his welcoming personality as well as his crystal blue eyes. “Rick greeted me at the door since I didn’t have a security badge to let myself into the building. During my first few days of employment, he went out of his way to befriend me,” Heather shared.
The two began dating and about a year later, Heather was given the surprise of her life. Following a trip to visit relatives in Pennsylvania, Rick suggested they stop at Watchung Reservation (one of their favorite parks). After reaching Lake Surprise on May 29, Rick got down on one knee and proposed with a classic princess-cut engagement ring.
Guests were given a preview of Heather and Rick’s October 1, 2011 celebration with gold-edged ivory invitations. “I wanted guests to feel the elegance of the event they were going to be attending,” noted Heather. After months of planning, the wedding day finally arrived. Heather walked down the aisle at Saint Teresa of Avila wearing a mermaid-style Casablanca gown embellished in intricate detailing of embroidery, lace, and beading. A hair comb along with a cathedral-length blusher veil and peep-toe Benjamin Adams shoes completed her look. Rick sported a classic black tuxedo with an off-white shirt, black vest, and bow tie.
Dan and Ellie of Bird & Branch Photography captured the day’s events in a photojournalistic approach. Rick noted, “Our photographers managed to get pictures of even the most trivial moments that we now look back on and are thrilled that we have them.” Heather and Rick are not only very pleased with their photographs, but enjoyed working with Bird & Branch Photography, claiming Dan and Ellie were two of the most amazing people they worked with.
Chosen for its timeless décor and large ballroom with dance floor, the reception was held at The Berkeley Plaza. Heather and Rick were also impressed with the accommodating staff. “The team at The Berkeley Plaza was fabulous. They came up with solutions that incorporated everything we wanted and tailored their services to fit our needs,” noted Rick. Guests enjoyed a variety of selections during cocktail hour, including specialty stations serving pierogis, fajitas, and stir fry, as well as passed hors d’oeuvres. For dinner guests had a choice of chicken francaise, Chateaubriand, or sole oreganata served with duchess potatoes and fresh vegetables. Italian cookies and pastries were served for dessert, in addition to their red velvet wedding cake.
Guests danced the night away from the moment they entered the reception with the help of Fantasy Productions DJ Entertainment. Jim Bello, their emcee for the evening, not only listened to Heather and Rick’s requests, but used his knowledge and played the best mix of songs by reading the crowd. Heather and Rick held the spotlight to “Never Let Go” by Hansen and also participated in the traditional parent dances. “When our guests chanted they wanted to hear one more song at the end of the night, we knew our wedding was a success,” shared the bride.
Heather secretly wished for a light dusting of snow as guests left The Berkeley Plaza. Although snowflakes didn’t fall from the sky, Heather’s maid of honor surprised the newlyweds by sprinkling glittering faux snowflakes over their hotel bed. “I’ll never forget that small gesture that truly touched my heart. It was one of my favorite memories from our wedding day,” commented Heather. Following their special day, the newlyweds escaped to Excellence Playa Mujeres for their honeymoon.
Heather & Rick
October 1, 2011
The Berkeley Plaza • Berkeley Heights, NJ
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony Location: Saint Teresa of Avila Parish
Celebrant: Father Peter Koziolkiewicz
Reception Location: The Berkeley Plaza
Photographer: Bird & Branch Photography
Entertainment: Fantasy Productions DJ Entertainment
Florist: Botanical Blooms LLC
Limousine Service: D&G Limousine
Cake Designer: Bovella’s Pastry Shoppe
Bridal Salon & Veil: I Do, I Do
Headpiece: Model Bride • Shoes: Benjamin Adams
Formal Attire: Sarno & Son Tuxedos
Invitations: The Papery • Favors: Howe House
Hair Stylist: Tami Bischoff • Makeup Artist: Model Bride
Jewelers: Zales and Helzberg Diamonds
Honeymoon Location: Excellence Playa Mujeres― Cancun, Mexico