The Wedding of ...
Jessica Tappen & Christopher Regan
Ceremony & Reception: The Westin Governor Morris
Gown: Watters Designs, at The Wedding Store at Liz Clinton, Andover, NJ
Tux: JoS. A. Bank
Cinematographer: Eloquent Studios
Makeup: Angila Azami
Hair: Shannon Smolinski
Florist: Blooms of Elegance
Cake: Calandra’s Bakery
Rentals & Decor: Charged Up Events
Dance Lessons: Arthur Murray Dance Studio, Denville, NJ
Chris and I met on Bumble and went on our first date shortly after. It actually wasn’t the best date! Chris was so quiet, and I’m very bubbly, so I wasn’t sure about us. I ran into him again and he was very different, so talkative and so nice, I wanted to give us another chance. It turned out he had strep throat the day of our first date, but he didn’t know until the next day, so that explained the quietness! We kept in touch and started dating and everything was very natural and easy. When I started grad school later that year, Chris made such an effort to see me, always picking me up at my parents when my classes were done for the week. It was very sweet.
A couple years later, we’d moved in together and Chris was taking me out for Valentine’s Day. We went to a candle making class and then out for sushi. When we went home, I walked in to see our house decorated with a Shutterfly book Chris made of our relationship, plus flowers and Baked by Melissa cupcakes that said, “Will you marry me?” I turned to him and he was on one knee. It was just the two of us and absolutely perfect.
We started looking at venues the very next weekend. We didn’t want a long engagement and were hoping for a winter wedding. We went to The Westin Governor Morris and loved everything about it! Everyone was super nice, there was a huge dance floor, and they had beautiful Christmas decorations. It was a central location for our families and we loved having everything in one stunningly beautiful place for the day of. The staff was awesome throughout planning. They were incredibly accommodating, gave us timely updates, and worked with us closely on whatever we needed. We had to postpone because of Covid and they were great at making sure we ended up with the wedding we hoped for all along.
We were married at The Westin by the pastor from my hometown church. We tried to make it as personal as possible, with custom vows, a beautiful birchwood arch, and a flower boy in lieu of a traditional flower girl.
For cocktail hour we had fun stations, like the Knickerbocker martini bar, a Baja California taco station, and a pasta station. I heard rave reviews about the mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, and the crab and lobster. Other favorites were the bacon-wrapped scallops, teriyaki steak on a skewer, and tuna wontons. Everything about the cocktail was 10 out of 10!
We decorated the ballroom with white and burgundy flowers and holiday greenery. We used little gold ornaments as place card holders, but because of the beautiful Christmas decor already at The Westin, we didn’t have to add too much.
For our reception, we had a DJ/band hybrid. The mix of live music and older songs, along with newer songs played later in the night, was the perfect balance for our crowd. Everyone was on the dance floor! Chris and I took dance lessons, so when it came to our first dance, we had a little skill behind our steps. At one point, Chris D’Amico, owner of D’Amico Entertainment, said he had a surprise for us. He had us go out onto the dance floor, everyone circled around us with their arms linked, and all danced and sung together in a circle around us. It was amazing.
Our dinner was out of this world. Chris had the peppercorn-crusted chateaubriand in a red wine reduction, with au gratin potatoes and green beans. The steak was delicious and cooked to perfection. We also selected the potato-crusted grouper and crispy chicken Valdostano as our other dinner options. For our cake, we incorporated our love of donuts. We had a three-tiered cake with fresh berries around the rim and donuts stacked on each tier.
We had an awesome wedding that was so ultimately us. We’d like to shout out to Danielle Marck, catering manager, who was amazing, wonderful, and super pleasant. David Lombardi, director of catering, was also great.
The chef cooked some of the best food I’ve ever had for our wedding. We are so impressed by the team at The Westin and at the talent of all our vendors, like our photographer, Eloquent Studios. Thank you so much to our parents for making the wedding of our dreams possible, and to all our guests for joining us!
The Westin Governor Morris, Morristown, NJ, 973.539.7300, marriott.com