Reb & Stef got to Madison, WI on Friday, just ahead of a big snowstorm
that was moving eastward. They picked up carolyn and Paul and another
friend, Rob Nahf, at the airport, and we were off to Wisconsin Dells,
about 44 miles north. That evening, after arriving at the Chula Vista
resort (A Southern California Style Resort ;-), we had a wonderful
dinner at Steak and Stein, a restaurant down the road from the
hotel. Eric, Amanda, and assorted friends and siblings were there.
On Saturday, the snow stopped falling, but it was much colder.
Reb and Rob ventured into town after breakfast. The bank clock
downtown read -4 F (-18 C), and the wind was blowing at up to 30mph.
Reb's beard started to freeze while they were walking around!
Guests began arriving at the Seth Peterson Cottage about 2 PM.
We were elegantly dressed in tuxes and evening dresses, with snow
boots on our feet! (Yes, we changed into our dress shoes later.)
The Cottage was one of Frank Lloyd Wright's last commissions. It's in
Mirror Lake State Park, in Lake Delton, WI. It has one bedroom, a
Manhattan-size kitchenette (with a Subzero fridge/freezer, that Wright
specified), and a sizable living area, just perfect for 29 guests.
The entire floor is flagstone, heated from beneath. One wall of the
living area is all windows, as well as about half the two walls that
immediately adjoin this one. There is a large, open stone fireplace
behind the kitchen, and a built-in settee on another wall. The
non-glass walls in this area are made of sandstone, with some of the
bricks sticking out far enough to accommodate the candles that had
been placed there by Eric and Amanda.
The bedroom featured built-in wooden closet space and a queen-size bed. The bathroom was reached through the bedroom. Its most interesting feature was the corner shower -- only a curtain on a curved ceiling track separated it from the rest of the room. A drain was perfectly positioned in the stone floor.
It was into this wonderful, warm space that we stepped, as the family was
snapping pictures and the caterers were busily setting up. Amanda looked
classically beautiful in a long, straight, ivory dress that was made
entirely of delicate needleworked flowers. Eric was smashing in his black
tuxedo with a gorgeous painted vest.
|Robert, Jennifer, Eric, Amanda, Phil, Sheila, and Marshall||Eric's mother & stepfather||Eric and his father, Marshall||Amanda's friends, Laura, Elise, and Adam|
They had engaged the services of county commissioner Leo Grill
(whimsically chosen for his cool name, according to Eric) for the
legal part, and when the time came, Leo had us all pronounce them
husband and wife together (except that it came out more
like man and wife due to the decibel level of the
traditionalists in the room)
After the ceremony, we feasted and drank merrily, for about seven
hours. It was wonderful. The caterers actually cooked most of the
food at the cottage. The dinner
was like eating in an intimate, private restaurant. All six courses
were excellent. We dimmed the lights and lit all of the candles. Eric
and Amanda had taken special care of special details like the
music. They had recorded a total of eight hours' worth of music on
five tapes, perfectly timed so that the
jazz section would play during dinner. They had also wired the cottage
for sound, with speakers discreetly hidden in corners, on shelves, and even in the fireplace.
This was the first wedding we had ever been to with door prizes.
The prizes were given out for a variety of things, such as noting the
music which was playing, noting that the window trim Wright designed
for the cottage matched the design on the envelope the invitation
came in, and for making particularly memorable toasts to the bride
For door prizes, they gave out Eric and Amanda
series A and
with their pictures and Fun facts about Eric & Amanda on
them, cassette tapes of the music that they were playing, post cards
with pictures of the cabin, Frank Lloyd Wright mugs and other memorabilia,
and Wisconsin shot glasses.
All in all, we feasted for about seven hours, and a number of people became members of the six wine club (so named because a different wine was served with each course). Several times, ejs reminded everyone of ricko's rule -- to drink one glass of water for every two glasses of wine. Everyone talked to everyone else. It really was a most fabulous day. Even though the cottage was really rather small, the warmth of those in attendance made it seem large. Though we were in the middle of the woods, miles from anywhere, it seemed like the center of the universe. It was nearly midnight when we finally left.
Mazeltov to Amanda and Eric. We know you will have a wonderful life together.
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