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Chris and Becca Photography

Lake View Vows

A Fairy Tale-Like Wedding on the Shores of Lake Waramaug

By John Torsiello

The COVID-19 pandemic put a halt to a number of activities we once took for granted, including weddings.

Many marriages were postponed last year and those that were held were simple and small because of state guidelines on crowd sizes and social distancing.

“It was a very tough year,” says Eileen Smith, owner of Eileen Smith Events in Bridgewater. “Mostly all of my weddings from April through August were postponed. A few couples had micro weddings. Now, it is much easier to hold a traditional-sized wedding. We request if people are coming to a wedding that they be vaccinated, or tested negative for COVID-19 72 hours prior to the event.”

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Okay, enough of COVID-19. Let’s rewind, shall we, to a happier time, to early October of 2019 which almost seems like halcyon days compared to the last year and a half. That’s when Nikki and Jon Foster were married in what some might call a fairy tale ceremony close by the shore of Lake Waramaug in Washington. The couple were wed on a sprawling estate, formerly the Lakeview Inn, now owned by Nikki’s parents, Lee and Cynthia Vance.

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“I spent my weekends and summers there while growing up so it’s always been a special place to me,” says Nikki of her parents’ home. “Jon and I spent time there together after we began dating so it became meaningful in our relationship. It was a place we associated with bringing together the people we love.” Ironically, Nikki’s parents attended a wedding at the property back in the 1980s when it was still the Lakeview Inn. “I’d heard that story growing up and it definitely planted a seed on having a wedding there.”

Smith played the role of Cecil B. DeMille in making the movie-like dream wedding a reality. “They had a perfect piece of property and we were able to do some special things,” such as having a boatful of flowers drifting just off shore and creating two signature cocktails for the reception that were named after the couple’s cats. “It’s the details that people remember,” says Smith.

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The couple currently live in Boston and met as coworkers at a life sciences consulting firm. Jon leads franchise strategy for a biotech firm and Nikki works in market planning for a diagnostics company.

In the days prior to the wedding, Nikki had to keep from biting her nails. “The weather was abysmal, pouring rain and 55 degrees. The forecast cleared up during our welcome drinks on Friday night so we decided to roll the dice and continue with an outdoor ceremony. Despite a misty morning, we ended up having a gorgeous day.” Thanks to Smith, careful planning and a break from the weather gods, Nikki’s and Jon’s magical wedding “was even better than we could have hoped for,” says the bride.

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Amid the grandeur of the event, Nikki’s most memorable moment was, “looking around our reception, seeing all of the important people in our lives celebrating our choice to be together provided an overwhelming feeling of love, support, and appreciation I’ll never forget.” “It was all perfect. The greatest day of my life and a perfect place to spend it,” says Jon.

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