REAL WEDDING: Jen & Valerie

How did you meet?

We met when Valerie was a first-year medical intern in the intensive care unit where I work as a Critical Care Physician Assistant.  Together, we took care of some of the sickest patients – one who would be the reason, nearly one year later, that Valerie stopped me in passing to tell me she was taking care of her again in a different ICU.  Valerie eventually sent me a message via social media. I missed all signals that she was trying to set up a time for us to meet outside of work! Fast forward several months later. We ran into each other, yet again, in the ICU taking care of a mutual patient. This time she made it clear that we would get together outside of work. Six years later, we still remember those two patients that serendipitously brought us together. 

How did the proposal happen?

Our first vacation together was to Paradise Island, Bahamas where Valerie’s parents have a timeshare. This trip is a vital part of our history together because it is where Valerie took me out to a quiet deck, overlooking the ocean, under the stars to tell me she loved me for the first time. Except that she didn’t actually tell me in that moment. She told me later as we fell asleep. Three years later we went back to the Bahamas with Valerie’s parents. This time, I brought a ring and planned to have my family fly from New York to be there as well. I walked Valerie out to the same quiet deck overlooking the ocean where she almost told me she loved me. I got down on one knee and asked her to spend the rest of her life by my side. Both of our families were part of the magic and we all celebrated that evening in Paradise. 

Why did you choose a Cescaphe Wedding?

Valerie and I attended two Cescaphe weddings before deciding on one of our own. For us, no other wedding ever compared.  The endless options, the endless extra options, the food, the service, the presentation – Cescaphe allows you to build your dream event and they help you every step of the way to make sure it comes true. 

What was your favorite part about wedding planning?

Our favorite part of wedding planning was watching our dream day, little by little, turn into a reality. We had an amazing team of professionals helping us check things off the enormous list that is required to make the day perfect. 

What was your favorite part of your wedding?

It is really hard to choose a favorite part of our wedding day but seeing our venue all made up for the very first time, hand in hand, looking out over the water towards Boathouse Row – that was breathtaking. Another standout moment was with our team of wedding planners, photographers and videographers up high on the cliff in front of the Art Museum. The best advice we heard from people was to really take in and live in each moment of our wedding day. That moment on the cliff, overlooking Water Works and Boathouse Row was one of those times when Valerie and I vividly remember exactly how we felt. We both looked down and saw our closest friends and family standing in front of the Engine House.  Reality set in for us right then – this was our special day and we would never forget it. 

What did you do to make your wedding day extra special?

When there are two brides the “getting ready” process really isn’t easy. We stayed in a beautiful corner suite overlooking Independence Park, and naturally, both of us wanted to be in that room as we got ready. After all, the suite was a treat to ourselves; we got to watch tourists view the Liberty Bell and take carriage rides around the park led by horses as we had our makeup done.  Our bridal party, wedding planners, our photographers, videographers, makeup artists and hair stylists, all did everything in their power to make sure we didn’t see each other the morning of our wedding. We planned do to our “first look” at The Waterworks that afternoon. We kept our respective wedding dresses and hairstyles secret for so long. We just wanted that moment of surprise to take our breath away. We think this really made the wedding day extra special and extra interesting. As you can see from the photos, it really was a breathtaking moment. 

What advice would you give to future brides and grooms?

We definitely loved the advice we were given about trying to experience and live in each moment on your wedding day because it really does go by so quickly. Take time to yourselves. Take mental pictures. Make sure to have moments where you are just one on one, you take a deep breath, you pinch yourselves, you talk – and then get back out there and enjoy every second.  These moments will live on in your heart and mind forever. 


Venue: Waterworks by Cescaphe Event Group

Florist: Fresh Designs Florist, Chester Heights PA

Band/DJ: Janis Nowlan Band, Philadealphia, PA

Invitations & Stationary: Two Paperdolls, Wayne, PA

Photographer:   Hoffer Photography, Downingtown, PA

Videographer:  Solidity Films, Philadelphia, PA

Transportation: Cescaphe Trolley

Dress Designer/Dress Shop: Pronovias, Eve of Milady- The Sample Rack, Philadelphia PA

Menswear Designer/Shop: Men’s Warehouse

Make-up Artist: Beke Beau, Philadelphia, PA

Wedding Planner: Kyle Michelle Weddings, NJ/Philadelphia/NY

Jewelry: Harris Jewelers, Wilmington, DE

Lighting/Draping: Beautiful Blooms, Philadelphia, PA


Client Development Associate: Betsy Shoutsal

Event Coordinator: Danielle Fisher

Event Manager: Victoria Ayers

Maitre D: Franco

Head Server: Marsi Tushe