WV Weddings Fall Winter 2020

They made their promises under a chuppah—a traditional Jewish wedding arch—as a nod to Hayley’s heritage. In a way, the structure itself symbolized two families becoming one. Just as they’d worked together to move Hayley into her apartment so many years before, JJ and Hayley’s father built the chuppah together from wood taken from her family’s property. It lives on today at her parents’ home. The reception was spent dancing, embracing, and bringing together all the important people they knew who had never gotten a chance to properly meet each other. As the crowd of 150 or so celebrated into the night, a cleverly cultivated seating chart nudged people from different chapters of the couple’s lives to finally share a drink, or a laugh, or a memory. After years of friendship, inopportune timing, and long distances, it was JJ and Hayley’s time, and they relish in that culmination even now that the day is done. “Timing is everything. JJ and I have known each other for quite a long time now—16 years, basically. And it was never the right time,” Hayley says. “It finally was the right time. I’m a big believer, I think we both are, that things happen when they’re supposed to happen.”

“That was the house I was born in. I grew up there my entire life, which I think is rare,” Hayley says. “It was so special, because JJ is close to my family as well, and he knows that means everything to me.” the wedding It was that closeness to family that meant West Virginia was always where Hayley and JJ would return for their wedding. The day of their outdoor October 2019 ceremony at Four Fillies Lodge in Peterstown, they kept a wary eye on the forecast, which had predicted rain all week. Thankfully, save for one lone blast of thunder, the weather remained peaceful as the crowd gathered in the woods to watch the couple say “I do.” They had a moment of silence for those both families had lost and recited a mix of pre-written excerpts and personally written vows, and a close friend performed the intimate ceremony. “The individual vows were fun and very, very, very special,” JJ says. “I could actually hear and see people tearing up in the crowd.”

The reception took place inside the lodge at Four Fillies. The 150 guests were treated to a full meal and slices of an exquisite wedding cake.

54 | WV WEDDINGS Fall/Winter 2020

Made with FlippingBook Ebook Creator