The Wedding of ...
Jacquelene Garguilo & AJ Bonistall
Ceremony: Saints Philip and James Church
Reception: OHEKA CASTLE, 631.659.1400, oheka.com
Gown: Lusan Mandongus and Pronovias
Bridesmaids: Halston Heritage
Tux: My Suit
Photographer: Cirillo Photography
Cinematographer: EXO Videography
Makeup: Adelyn’s Canvas
Hair: Ahern Beauty
Florist: Bella Flowers
Cake: OHEKA CASTLE
Quartet: Luminous Sounds
DJ: LI Sound DJ
Event Planner: Above All Events, 631.255.7196, www.abovealleventsny.com
Fairy Tale Day
AJ and I were friends for all four years of college, but it wasn’t until our last semester of senior year that we started to date. After graduation, I moved back home to Long Island and AJ got a job as an electrical contractor in Harrison, NY. Eventually, I got a job at a tech company in Stamford, CT to live closer to him.
After five years of dating, AJ planned a special proposal at my sister’s house in Northport, NY. We went on a long walk on the beach, eventually leading to a fishing rod set up in the Long Island Sound. I reeled it in to find a bottle with a message in it that said, “I have a question for you.” The next thing I know, AJ gets down on one knee and asks the big question! After I said yes, my entire family and closest friends came out from hiding and behind cheering! We celebrated with a party (plus an awesome firework display) at my sister’s house.
We chose OHEKA CASTLE because it's a venue that is truly out of a fairy tale. My sister had gotten married there, so I knew the food, service, and ambiance would be amazing. I worked with Rick Bellando, sales manager, and Kathy Thompson, banquet manager, who both made sure that everything was perfect! I felt like I was working with my family. In my opinion, you can't find a venue better than OHEKA.
Cocktail hour had all the works, including a chef’s carving station offering roasted turkey breast and garlic filet and also a pasta station with penne, farfalle, and rigatoni served with several sauces, cheeses, and toppings. My personal favorite was the seafood station with jumbo Gulf shrimp, Wellfleet oysters, and Littleneck clams. The food was incredible.
My dream of an all-white spring wedding came to life in our ballroom with our décor and the amber uplighting. The tables were adorned with champagne lace linens and completed with all-white peony centerpieces to match my bridesmaids’ dresses.
Our DJ created a hilarious entrance video for us, which included clips from our favorite movies that told our story. Everyone was hysterically laughing and people are still talking about the video over a year later. We kicked off dinner with my sister’s amazing wedding toast, which was actually a rap. The appetizer was a baked goat cheese salad in balsamic vinaigrette.
For the main course, guests chose between filet mignon in port wine demi-glace, French cut chicken breast with wild mushroom ragout, or miso-marinated Chilean sea bass. It was one of the best meals I’ve ever had. OHEKA’s executive pastry chef, Daniel Andreotti, designed our amazing five-tier wedding cake with alternating layers of chocolate fudge and hazelnut filling. We also had an elaborate dessert café with a flame station, a sorbet and gelato station, a waffle station, and more.
Even though it was a big wedding, the dance floor still felt intimate and everyone danced the entire night. As a surprise to AJ and our guests, I arranged for a few dancers to do a surprise flash mob. And of course, at every Italian wedding, you cap off the night with the "Tarantella.”
I wish every bride could work with the amazing vendors we had. They all feel like family. Rick and Kathy and all the staff at OHEKA have such an eye for detail and went above and beyond to make sure that we had the day of our dreams. And lastly, thank you to our friends and family for sharing in this incredible day with us.