The Wedding of ...
Samantha Abruzzo & Jonathan Vanderhoof
Ceremony & Reception: SkyView Golf Club, 973.726.4653, www.skyviewgolf.com
Gown: Sophia Tolli, at Tesi Bridal & Formal, Northfield, NJ
Bridemaids: David’s Bridal
Tux: Men’s Wearhouse
Photographer & Cinematographer: Anthony Ziccardi Studios
Makeup: Ann-Marie Nichilo
Hair: Sarah Abruzzo
Cake: A Little Cake
DJ: Global Productions
“Love at First Sight”
The short version of how we met is Jon was hiding in a bush on our college campus and when I ran by, he jumped out and tackled me. The long version is we were both playing “Humans vs. Zombies,” which is a weeklong, campus-wide game of tag. After we met, we exchanged numbers and Jon went back to his dorm and told his roommate he’d just met the most amazing girl. I told my housemates about the freshman who tagged me. After seven months of friendship, Jon asked me to be his girlfriend while watching the Orionids meteor shower after our school’s homecoming game.
Our first date was a haunted hayride; the most unique and fun first date I’d ever been on. After I graduated and moved back home, we only saw each other on the weekends. When he graduated we moved in together and just eight days later he popped the question. We went to a lantern festival in the Poconos with hundreds of lanterns rising into the sky as our backdrop. Jon got down on one knee and proposed in front of our closest friends.
It was love at first sight with SkyView Golf Club. We had weighted categories including food, outdoor and indoor ceremony space, pricing, and accessibility for guests. SkyView came out on top and our mothers loving it sealed the deal. SkyView was an absolute pleasure to work with. Michelle Flores Payano, the banquet sales manager, was patient with our hundreds of questions and kept us on track, reminding us of anything we needed. The day of, I had Hildegard Power, the banquet sales manager, with me, who I can only describe as Wonder Woman. She kept everything on schedule and moving along without skipping a beat. SkyView also provided golf carts so we could get to the most scenic areas of the course for our breathtaking photos.
Before the ceremony, Jon and I did a first look. It was a magical moment we’re forever grateful for; when all the nerves melted away as I saw how he looked at me. Our ceremony was outside on the hill under the birchwood arch and perfect blue skies. My best friend Sam helped me make my bouquet of Sola Wood flowers, which I placed on the hilt of a light saber; one of many subtle Star Wars references we snuck into our big day. Our friend Michele officiated; it was special to have someone who loved us as our officiant. We planted a Japanese Maple Tree for our unity ceremony and our moms poured dirt from our childhood homes into the pot to symbolize the strong roots they gave us. We wrote our own vows, making the ceremony symbolize our love story.
At cocktail hour, we mingled with guests and SkyView had drinks and food from each station waiting for us. Cocktail hour is our favorite part of any wedding and we were thrilled to fully enjoy the delish spread. Our favorite dishes were the suckling pig carving station, the baked brie en croute, the pub station, the beef tenderloin crostini, and the coconut shrimp.
Our fall-themed ballroom welcomed guests with a table of miniature white pumpkins whose stems held their place cards. Our centerpieces were twisted metallic pumpkin candle holders on a wreath of fall leaves. We mixed short centerpieces with one large pumpkin and tall centerpieces with a candelabra with three smaller pumpkins hanging from it, and the mantle of the fireplace had candles and fall leaves draped across.
We were introduced into the reception and went straight into our first dance followed by our first course. A special request was for both a salad and a pasta dish before the entrée. The entrée was a crowd favorite: a duet of chateaubriand and chicken française served with seasonal vegetables and roasted red potatoes. Dessert was a sampler plate of wedding cake, ice cream, and chocolate-covered strawberries. After our parent dances and speeches, our DJ kept the floor filled all night with music for everyone! At the end of the night, pulled pork sliders and soft pretzels were available in a to-go station.
We are forever grateful to our amazing vendors and venue. From finding the perfect dress to the smallest detail, we were blessed with people who truly cared. We thank our wedding party for always having our backs, and our best man, Robert, for delivering an amazing speech that made everyone laugh and cry. Our maids of honor, Emily and Sarah, were huge supports throughout planning. Sarah also did bridal and bridal party hair and I cherish that special moment. Our biggest thank you is to our parents. Our love story wouldn’t be possible without their foundation.
SkyView Golf Club, Sparta, NJ