While Nick and I were taking photos, our guests headed to the reception tent for the cocktail hour. They were supposed to gather around the rectangular pool — amidst round high top tables and mason jars of candles tied with red and orange ribbon — but the wet weather prevented that from happening. However, I heard they still had a pretty excellent time.

red and orange chinese lanterns

The space was decorated with red and orange Chinese lanterns, strings of white lights, baskets of greens, and fichus trees (all expertly arranged by our day of coordinator, Betsy, I must add).

Susan Savia provided the entertainment, and drinks were served alongside a European cheese spread with fresh bread, fruits, dips, and mustards (provided by The Festive Board of York).

reception tent decor

We offered two signature drinks: Arnold Palmers from the groom and Peach Sangria from the bride. The Arnold Palmer is a blend of iced tea, lemonade, and vodka. And we mixed the Sangria the morning before the wedding. (Get the recipe.)

We also had on hand lots of red and white wine and three kegs of microbrews from Otto’s. The beer list was displayed on chalkboard signs:

  • Wedding Wheat (a light American wheat ale with the delicate aroma and flavor of apricot)
  • Bride’s Ale (an American red ale, very malty and crisp)
  • Groom’s Lager (a light refreshing American lager with a malty smooth character and low hop bitterness)

Iced tea, lemonade, water, and a selection of sodas were offered, as well.

Guests found their escort cards clipped by clothespins between two wooden posts. There were also photos of the two of us through the years. (Unfortunately, I have no picture of the masterpiece we finished the day before the wedding!)

Each table was named after a place Nick and I visited together, with a photo of us at that place. A red square napkin (purchased on sale at Target) was placed in the center of each table and held a quart-size mason jar with an arrangement of daisies and dahlias and smaller mason jars filled with river pebbles and candles.

wedding reception table names

wedding reception table names

The tables were pre-set with spinach salad with strawberries, blueberries, and sesame seeds in a light honey vinaigrette.


We gave our family and friends about an hour to mingle before we joined them to REALLY get the party started. Our DJ, “Wild Bill”, served as the MC for the evening, and he was fabulous. He’s articulate and eloquent, yet imaginative and humorous. First he recognized our grandparents who were already seated at their tables, and then he announced our parents to the tune of “We Are Family.”



Next came the wedding party, and they showed off some funky moves to “Play That Funky Music.”

wedding party entrance

wedding party entrance

wedding party entrance

And then onto the main event: the new Mr. and Mrs.! Nick and I were announced to “The Way You Make Me Feel,” by none other than Michael Jackson. And, of course, Nick did the moonwalk!

bride and groom entrance

We headed straight onto the dance floor, I handed off my bouquet to my sister, and Wild Bill queued our song: “You Are The Best Thing,” by Ray LaMontagne.

Nick and I hit every step of our East Coast Swing, and I love that we sang the words to each other.

wedding first dance




You’ll notice that the sides of tent were down due to the weather, and it only got worse. I’m not kidding when I tell you that there was major flooding in central Pennsylvania that night. But nobody complained when the rain started to seep under the tent. We were dry and cozy and surrounded by absolute love.

Next: We eat, we drink, we dance!

{photos credit to Robert Winton}