Bear Mountain Inn Wedding | New York
Congratulations Billy and Merit!!
Melanie Grady Photography
Bright and colorful fall leaves, a luxurious rustic lodge, nautical accents, and a merry-go-round. This Bear Mountain Inn wedding in New York was romantic, intimate, and playful.
They met on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay, at a magical place in the woods called Echo Hill Outdoor School. Billy was a Captain of a fleet of old historic wooden vessels, and Merit was a naturalist and teacher. Both lived and taught outside, inspiring children from all walks of life to explore, learn and wonder. It started casually, going on adventures together… a trip to the beach where Merit would hold Billy’s hand, scared of the waves….a shark tooth hunting expedition at Calvert Cliffs, where they hoped for Megalodon teeth. Then Baltimore…Annapolis……D.C. It wasn’t long before Billy was coming back ashore from a 5 day sailing trip, and Merit finishing a riverside canoe trip. He asked her to a movie in the park. The Elsworth and the Sultana straining at the dock, water from the Chester river lapping at the shore…they watched The Goonies under the stars. And something clicked. Coffees at Sam’s and Evergrain in Chestertown led to dinners and dreams about the future. Soon they were moving to Boston; new jobs, new experiences. They took a trip to Iceland. Another year… another trip. This time to Israel. South of Jerusalem they summited Masada, a historic mountain that was about to have another significant moment play out atop its peak. Overlooking the Dead Sea, Billy asked Merit to marry him!
Wedding Venue: Bear Mountain Inn Bear Mountain, New York
Bridal Gown: Allure – Clever Bride Consignment Shop
Groom’s Attire: Merchant Mariner’s Dinner Dress Mess Jacket with Captain rank by Lighthouse Uniform Company
Floral Design: Lily’s of the Valley
Jewelry: Grandmother’s seed pearl necklace on Merit
Engagement ring, Rudek family heirloom
Billy’s Pearl in boutonniere, gift from his Aunt Patti Gray
Billy’s Tiger’s eye cufflinks, formerly his father’s, William Rudek
Hair and Makeup: Bear Mountain Inn Spa
Billy, you are one of the most genuinely kind and happiest people I’ve ever known. Being present to witness the pure joy and deep love in your heart for Merit was something we’ll never forget. You look at each other with such genuine admiration that it melts my heart. You are truly the perfect match, and we are so happy for the both of you!!
Josh and I stayed in Manhattan for a few days before and after the wedding, so we stopped at this amazing overlook on our way north to the wedding.
Bear Mountain is less than an hour drive from the big apple!
I’m obsessed with their antique diamond ring! SO GORGEOUS!
These Tiger Eye cufflinks above belonged to Billy’s father. I love when couples incorporate family heirlooms into their wedding day. It’s so meaningful.
Merit gave Billy the cufflinks below as a wedding gift. I believe they are hand etched and they pretty much blew my mind. So cool.
Coming together quite nicely, I must say. Look at this pure happiness and excitement. SWOON.
Billy, SHE’S SO BEAUTIFUL!!!! Ahhhhhhhhh. You’re a lucky man! 😉
Here comes the big reveal…
…and it couldn’t have been sweeter
Time to have some fun with portraits in this beautiful light!
and then with this beautiful landscape!
New York in the fall <3
Their ceremony and reception was in the carousel pavilion! Yes, there’s an actual carousel just to the left of this image of the ceremony.
The Jewish wedding ceremony ends with a famous bang. Billy got to stomp on the glass right before planting this kiss on his new bride!
Who doesn’t dream of being introduced as the new Mr and Mrs at their wedding on a carousel!?
Let the wild fun begin!!
No Jewish wedding is complete without the Hora, or chair dance. In this tradition, a few strong and brave guests hoist the bride and groom high above the crowd on chairs to the infectious sounds of “Hava Nagila”. Friends and family dance around in an ecstatic circle as the elevated couple tries not to look (or fall) down.
This was SO FUN! I could not stop smiling from here on out through the end of the night.
To Billy’s amazement, Merit had a little surprise in store for him. She had planned a choreographed group dance with all of the guests in attendance!
They absolutely tore up the dance floor. It was brilliant. Kudos to everyone! Jon Pardi – ‘Head Over Boots’
The dance floor was non-stop entertainment!! Incredible.
Y’all know I love to have a little fun at night with my lights, so here’s the magic that we created with the merry-go-round at the end of the night. 🙂
Thank you so much for everything, Billy and Merit!!! Trusting us to capture the best day of your lives means the world to us! We can’t wait to see what the future holds for you together.
And let all of your friends and family know that we still have some open dates in 2018 and are now booking 2019 weddings! ANYWHERE!!