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An October wedding at Manursing Island Club in Rye, New York

What was supposed to be a spectacular fall wedding held under a gorgeous clear top tent adorned with loads of twinkling lights, deep navy and rich burgundy hues and beach games turned into something totally different. This wedding presented a challenge I have never faced before - coastal storm surges that completely flooded our tent a few hours before the start of the ceremony. Before I get to that, let's backtrack and talk about what should have been!



The couple and I worked together to craft a personalized day featuring a top notch band, jaw dropping florals and fun touches like their witty ceremony programs. We wanted the design to be reflective of the coastal setting as well as the fall season. We booked an absolutely stunning clear top tent with white drapery and twinkle lights throughout to create a really romantic look and make guests feel like they were dancing under the stars.


Everything was coming together beautifully. We held their rehearsal the night before after the tent was installed and enjoyed views of the calm Long Island Sound. We all made our way to Riverview Yacht Club in Stamford for their rehearsal dinner and welcome party. Everything was falling into place. Until the wedding day came.


Upon arrival to the venue, I did what I always do and walk the space. I check vendors in as they arrive. Begin setting up decorations. And oversee the bride while she is getting ready. Today though, I also had to keep really close tabs on the ocean. The venue coordinator and I were both anxiously watching as strong winds, high tide and the storm surge kept creeping closer and closer to our tent. We all held our breath as high tide approached with the hope that the wind direction would shift. It did not. High tide hit and the winds brought the water crashing over the seawall as wave after wave smashed into the tent completely flooding it. This tent was no longer going to serve as the site for their reception.




I had to come up with some quick and creative thinking as to how we could still have this wedding. I proposed a new layout to the venue coordinator and then we all sprang into action to move things around. Our ceremony would take place on the front lawn with the building as the backdrop. Cocktail hour would take place inside the Clubhouse in a sitting room as well as the front veranda. We would move our satellite bar to the front veranda and pass appetizers throughout the space. Tables would now line the covered back porch and after cocktail hour, we would clear out the hi-tops and then space would become the dance floor. I was dreading having to approach my couple to tell them the news.


I showed the groom what was happening and laid out our new plan for him. While they weren't thrilled, this was nobody's fault and we had to do what we had to do in order to still make this wedding happen. They were happy that we were able to come up with a plan that allowed for seating and dancing.


This wedding ended up being beautiful. Now this is a very extreme case but this is another example as to why you need a strong, professional, experienced vendor team in your corner. Had I not been on-site, this news would have been brought directly to the couple for them to figure out how to handle things. I took control, made decisions and only approached them with a problem once we had a solution. It was truly heartbreaking to know that all this work we had put in over the 12 months leading up to the wedding wasn't going to happen but at the end of the day, they got married, enjoyed great food, great drinks and great music with all of the people they love and that is what truly matters.


Enjoy this 5 star review from our bride from our page on The Knot!

Where do I even begin?! Alyssa was phenomenal to work with. She was professional coordinating with all of our different vendors, prompt in responses to our various questions, upbeat at all times, and kind throughout the whole process. I always felt like the center of attention when speaking with Alyssa and given how many weddings she plans, that’s saying something! My now husband and I were going through a gut renovation of our home while planning our wedding, and I could not have made it through mentally and emotionally without Alyssa. She was very patient with me when I felt like I was being pulled in multiple directions. On our wedding day, we experienced a historic high tide and coastal flood surge, which required very quick thinking and a total rearrangement of the reception just a couple hours before the ceremony. Alyssa worked so diligently to still make our wedding perfect. No easy feat! Our guests were thrilled with the day and have been raving ever since. It was a wedding weekend to remember and we cannot thank Alyssa enough! If only we could do it all again!

Vendor Team:

Planning & Design: Alyssa Jean Signature Events

Venue & Catering: Manursing Island Club

Photography: Bruce Plotkin

Videography: The Light Mill

Rentals: Stamford Tents & PEAK

Lighting & Drape: Shindig Lighting

Florals: Diane Gaudett

Band: Pete Saunders Band from Hank Lane

Beauty: Lindsey Trop

Dress: Anne Barge

Stationery: Roseville Designs

Table Number Holders: Mystic Knotwork

Transportation: Dattco




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