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Wedding Day Surprises

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Sunday, May 28, 2006

Wedding season is upon us, and with it, the potential for much unintended hilarity. A few weeks ago, we asked readers to submit their favorite wacky wedding stories. We don't have room for all of the responses we received, but here are some of our favorites:

TAKES THE CAKE

As a retired caterer, I could easily compose a novel about wacky weddings -- someday I might!

At a fantastic, elegant, tented buffet reception for 300 on the lavish grounds of an 18th-century mansion, I was supervising a staff of about 25. Suddenly, there was a lull in the band, and I heard in the distance the distinctive whoosh-whoosh of spraying water. My stomach sank as I realized what it was -- the underground sprinkler system had activated. I began frantically trying to reach maintenance. No one returned my calls. As the first bank turned off, more sprinkler heads popped up and the water whooshed on. I could only pray that they would stop before the tent.

And then . . . a table of 10 jumped from their chairs in unison, screaming. There was a sprinkler head under their table, bidet-height. The bride's sister, who was the maid-of-honor and an FBI agent, threw herself almost bodily over the cake. She would later say her protective self kicked in and she focused only on saving the cake -- a many-layered fantasy covered in rolled fondant and spun sugar flowers. Thinking fast, I had servers cover the buffet with extra tablecloths. I placed pans over the sprinkler heads and had bus boys sit on them. It was the longest 10 minutes of my life -- but the cake was saved!

-- Vanessa V. Moncure, Fredericksburg

BREAK DANCING

It started as any typical wedding would -- church ceremony, followed by a reception filled with decadent food, a steady stream of drinks, and a band that had arguably as much fun as the guests. The band's energy was contagious, in fact, and before we knew it my new husband and I were on stage with me leading the hokeypokey. Hours later, as the band was winding down, a friend grabbed me for a final dance, spinning me across the floor with mock gusto. We locked arms and began to spin -- until she accidentally let go, propelling me to the dance floor, wrist first.

The night ended with my somewhat flustered, yet amused, husband comforting me as I soaked my wrist in the ice from the champagne bucket in our suite -- later followed by a trip to the ER. After the hospital staff finished their snickering, I was finally treated, and the typical "hand upon hand" picture found in so many wedding albums was replaced by a honeymoon "cast upon hand" picture, which certainly made for a memorable story for years -- nine and counting. -- Beth Gallagher, Falls Church

COLOR ME HAPPY

The Crayola Factory in Easton, Pa., was the venue for a very "colorful" wedding -- ours. Like Dorothy in the "Wizard of Oz," guests stepped out of a black-and-white stormy day and entered an explosion of color, but with giant purple crayons, Pez dispensers and psychedelic papier-mache birds instead of wicked witches, talking scarecrows and flying monkeys. In addition to traditional eating and dancing, guests played with hot wax, painted pictures and learned how to make crayons.

It was all fun and games until someone got a little too creative with the sculpting clay.


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