Weddings at the Madison Hotel are always lots of fun to photograph. Julie and Greg….well they made it this wedding that much more fun to shoot. Both of them got ready at The Madison Hotel. We were going to head over to a Frelinghuysen Arboretum for portraits…but mother nature did not cooperate. The rain started to come down pretty good, and the last think I wanted to do is get these two soaked before their ceremony! The ceremony took place at the Madison, as did the reception. The reception took place at the conservatory room which albeit difficult to light, makes for beautiful ambiance. So far, all of the weddings at the Madison Hotel I have ever photographed had their reception at the conservatory. It’s quite the room for a reception. Out of all of the Weddings at the Madison Hotel I have photographed, this was one of my favorites for sure!
Now for more on these two, here’s a blurb from Julie!
“How we met:
It all started in 2004 when a bunch of curious teenagers were roaming the boardwalk of Ocean City, Maryland. Little did Greg and Julie realize, that summer night would bring them together. By the luck of the draw (no pun intended), Julie and Greg just happened to cross paths. Their groups of friends (most of which are still close friends to this day) decided to become summer buddies; hanging out at the beach most days and H2O, the hottest and foamiest under 21 club on the strip, at night. Summer came to an end and living in different states made things hard at that age. Greg and Julie were just friends but everyone always knew they had a thing for each other. Luckily for them, AOL instant messenger became “a thing”. At one point Julie and her friends convinced the boys to drive all the way from Maryland to upstate New York (which only lasted a few hours and ended with Greg being grounded for weeks). When the following summer rolled around and another trip to OCMD was approaching, the friends (mostly Julie and Greg) planned to meet up once again. It was very evident that Greg and Julie liked one another at this point. This vacation was full of dumb teenage fun that ended with one single kiss goodbye on the boardwalk…. Greg was off to college and Julie was still in high school in upstate New York (cue heartbreaking music)
Fast forward 7 years… They would finally meet again.
Thank goodness for technological advancements. Facebook came at just the right time to keep Greg and Julie connected through those years. They were both busy at college and their lives had changed, but every once in a while they would chat on social media and catch up. Eventually the conversations dwindled as they were both in relationships at times or chasing their dreams miles away from one another. Then one day Greg found the urge to see what Julie had been up to for the past few years. He contacted Julie on Facebook. They spent some time interacting on social media and realized they were both single. Greg suggested he come meet Julie in New York on his “way through town”. Julie and Greg were both hesitant, given neither were in the running for anything serious at the time. After some thought and a bunch of “why nots” they met up. Let’s just say the lack of desire to be in a committed relationship quickly vanished. Before long Greg and Julie were madly in love and have been together ever since. Now, they are so ready to start the next chapter of their love story..
How he proposed:
Greg had one job to fulfill for his proposal; surprise Julie. And he did it! There was no question of whether Julie and Greg were going to get married. It was just a matter of when. Greg convinced Julie that his friends were staying over another night after a long weekend. He called Julie at work and asked her what she wanted to eat for dinner because he was going to order food for himself and the guys. Julie, indecisive as always, said the chicken and called Greg back two minutes later to change her decision to fish. Meanwhile, Greg was already standing out on the (windy cold) pier 14 with candles lit waiting for her to arrive home. Julie moseyed home like always after an exhausting day at work. However, she was particularly slow on this day since she thought Greg had friends over and she was chatting with her sister on the phone. Forty minutes later…. Julie opened her front door to 4 dozen roses, a candle, a note…. and a completely empty apartment. She immediately knew what was happening. After racing around the apartment to find more clues for a few minutes (nervous that she wouldn’t be able to figure them out), she found the last one on top of her folded scarf on the bed. She raced downstairs and out to pier 13 to find a closed gate. She was frantic, but remembered she had the clue in her pocket. When she opened it back up, she realized she was at the wrong pier and quickly made her way to pier 14. She again found a partially closed gate. Thinking that maybe it was like that when Greg arrived, she went in. She heard from afar a man yelling, “time to go, pier is closing”. She was so upset and looking around for Greg. She saw him and ran over. They hugged, they kissed, they cried… and then they didn’t know what to do. They walked hand in hand off the closing pier to the next one. Greg made Julie wait while he lit the candles again on the windy pier… or at least tried. He finally got down on one knee and asked Julie to be with him for the rest of forever. She did not hesitate to say YES.
The proposal was imperfectly perfect. Julie would take forever getting home because of distractions and go to the wrong pier. Then again, Greg would never think to check when the pier is closing. Another fun chapter in their crazy love story.
Our wedding planning was fairly relaxed besides being a bit rushed. We got engaged in November, picked a venue in February, and had our wedding in July! I was set on having a summer wedding, so it was a choice between doing it in 6 months or waiting a year! My motto was everything will work out and it truly did. Everything fell into place perfectly for our wedding. Greg left everything up to me… except for the music. That was ‘his thing’. He also really pushed for the painter (although I did all the work to get one). Greg was not excited about writing our own vows at first but in the end we are so glad we did! Our ceremony was our favorite part of the day, as it should be. I really enjoyed the whole planning process! However if planning a wedding wasn’t already keeping me busy, we also moved on March 1st. It was a crazy time. One stressful thing about our wedding planning is that on top of all of this Greg still went to Vegas for work for two months right before our wedding. The main event for the WSOP (biggest poker tournament of the year) was suppose to end days before our wedding so when we booked our venue we thought, how perfect! Except, at the beginning of May we found out this date had changed and was scheduled to end ON our wedding day. So we had to sweat not only the groom not making his own wedding, but also many of his groomsmen and wedding attendees. In the end, everyone made it but crazy enough a guy from Morristown won the event on our wedding day. Big day for Morristown, former champ gets married in the town and newest champ is from there! Another funny coincidence that happened leading up to our wedding day was when I took a trip out to Vegas to visit Greg. I played roulette for the first time with a friend. After she lost most of our money I took the chips. A drunk guy at the table asked me my favorite number and I responded ‘two’. He then asked why I decided to put 4$ on twenty-two. I told him that was the day I was getting married in a few weeks. As you can probably guess… the ball landed on twenty-two. “
Thanks for the amazing detail Julie! I hope everyone enjoys the photos from this wedding at the Madison Hotel