The Wedding of…
Moses Salami & Danapolie Brice
Ceremony & Reception: Grand Oaks Country Club
Gown: Sareh Nouri, at Castle Couture, Manalapan, NJ
Bridesmaids: Jessica Angel Collection
Tux: Suitsupply; Groomsmen: The Black Tux
Photographer: Arista Imagery
Cinematographer: LJR Films
Makeup: Beauty By Bless
Florist & Decorator: Daphnee Lauren Events
Cake: Grand Oaks Country Club
DJ: DJ Ceez of Carter Ent. Weddings
Event Planner: Ayo Ogunfowora of SavvyEverAfter
Master of Ceremony: MC Tunde Duduskii
Violinist: Eunice C. China
Saxophonist: Connell Thompson
Groom's Lapel Pin: Gredeearts; Bow Tie: Y2 Collection
Photo Booth: Picture Perfect Photoz
Danapolie and I met at a bible study hosted by a mutual friend. We had many friends in common but somehow had never met. The first day I met her, I told a friend she was beautiful, passionate, and I wanted her to be my girlfriend. The following year we went on our first date to a fine-dining French restaurant in Montclair, NJ. We spent the evening with great conversation, delicious food, and laughter. We built a friendship that turned into a relationship.
About four years later, I proposed to Danapolie at Van Vleck House in Montclair. She thought we were going to a work event, but we walked into an open garden and she saw all our family and friends holding balloons that said, “Marry Me.” Our beautiful proposal, surrounded by loved ones, was perfect.
We planned a vibrant and colorful wedding filled with Nigerian and Haitian culture, love, and our family and friends. Grand Oaks Country Club was perfect, with a great location for guests who came from all over the world, a large ballroom, and beautiful grounds. We worked with Margaret Addivinola, the director of catering. She made herself available when we needed her, communicated everything to us very clearly, and worked with us to choose the best package for what we wanted. Grand Oaks was very accommodating, even through rescheduling due to the pandemic.
Our ceremony was supposed to be outside. When rain changed our plans, we were impressed by the efficiency with which Grand Oak’s staff relocated our ceremony inside. It was amazing! Our day, in the end, was beautiful and we felt like it was exactly as it was meant to be. We had a talented violinist play music to add a classical touch and a saxophonist who played afrobeat and Haitian music.
For our cocktail hour, we selected a Mediterranean station as well as an assortment of delicious hors d’oeuvres. The room overlooked the fairway and we were impressed by the staff here and throughout the night. The wait staff and our maître d’ are amazing at what they do.
The ballroom looked stunning with our décor. We had white roses and hydrangeas in alternating high and low centerpieces. Our sweetheart table was particularly impressive, with a thick vine of roses sweeping up from the front of the table to wrap around behind our loveseat and reach up to the ceiling behind us. Candles accented our table and as the night went on, the gorgeous chandelier sparkled above the dance floor.
Dinner began with a spinach salad, followed by tortellini pasta with wild mushrooms. Our guests could choose an entrée of braised short rib with cipollini onions and root vegetables; Madiera with crispy phyllo, mozzarella, spinach and prosciutto; or miso-glazed salmon with shiitake mushrooms, spinach, and jasmine rice. We heard from many guests that the food was awesome!
We danced into the night! Our MC and DJ did a wonderful job and our saxophonist really got into the crowd. Everyone was dancing, and from the smiles on our guests’ faces, it seemed they were having as wonderful a time as we were!
Our guests sprayed with us with money on the dance floor. In Nigerian culture, spraying money on the celebrants symbolizes a showering of good fortune, a display of affection for the couple, and a way to bless the new family. After, we changed into traditional Nigerian clothes, there was more dancing and dollars flying everywhere!
The food was amazing. The staff was on point. Margaret and the coordinator leading up the event were phenomenal at working together. Our wedding was made beautiful and fun by all our vendors. The blending of our families and our cultures filled our wedding with vibrance and love, and we will forever remember the day we became husband and wife.
Grand Oaks Country Club, Staten Island, NY, 718.356.2771, grandoaksnyc.com