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By Ivette Manners
Categories:  Real Weddings   

For Carmelisa and Salvatore, it was three degrees of separation to finding each other. They met through their fathers, who have known each other for over 30 years. "Both of our fathers are auto mechanics and work across the street from each other," says Carmelisa. Salvatore also knew Carmelisa's father and brother, and one day noticed a photo of Carmelisa in her father's office. He decided to reach out to her on Facebook and they went out on their first date the very next weekend.


Salvatore popped the big question on a day Carmelisa thought he planned to casually take her out for breakfast followed by a day at the botanical gardens. "He told me he wanted to take some photos of me there," says Carmelisa. They spent a couple of hours on a romantic walk as Salvatore took photos of her. "Sal then told me he wanted to go to one more place before we went home," says Carmelisa. Earlier that day, Salvatore had asked his brother Mike and Carmelisa's brother Anthony to go to
Flushing Meadows Park and place a wrapped picture frame containing a photo collage of Carmelisa and him along with a bottle of champagne and two g lasses at a gazebo in the middle of the park. When Carmelisa and Salvatore approached the gazebo, Carmelisa was immediately overwhelmed with emotion. "Sal told me to open the frame and I saw the photo collage, and then I turned around and saw he was on one knee holding the ring," says Carmelisa. After Carmelisa accepted to be Salvatore's wife, they went back to her parent's house where both of their families were waiting to celebrate the special occasion.

The couple had a traditional Catholic ceremony with a singer and organist at the Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Ozone Park. The officiate was Rev. Patrick Griffin, C.M., a friend of Salvatore's  from his time working in the marketing department at St. John's University. Carmelisa walked down the aisle in a beautiful Val Stefani gown while her bridesmaids were dressed in purple one-shoulder gowns and carried bouquets of purple Picasso lilies. Salvatore wore a slim-fit Perry Ellis tuxedo and his groomsmen wore slim fitting Calvin Klein tuxedos with Hugo Boss ties, which Salvatore gifted them. After the ceremony, guests threw white rose petals as the couple left the church in a Rolls Royce Phantom limousine to take their wedding day photos at Station Square in Forest Hills.

Photo: tony Lante Photography

The reception was held at Russo's On The Bay in Howard Beach, where the couple had their ballroom lit up in purple to match the bridesmaids dresses. "Our first dance as man-and-wife was one of the best moments of the night," says Carmelisa. For their second dance, the couple hired America's Got Talent finalist Sal Valentinetti, also a friend of Salvatore's from St. John's University, to sing "Unchained Melody" by The Righteous Brothers followed by a few Frank Sinatra songs. Dinner was another highlight. "Sal and I have always loved the food at Russo's on the Bay, and the menu we put together was really great,” says Carmelisa. The event's fare featured an 11-choice menu of traditional Italian food and fish, as well as a clam-and-oyster bar and lobster. "Russo's created a fabulous signature drink for us that contained mango, which is one of our favorite fruits," says Carmelisa. "For dessert, we had a full Venetian hour with lots of different sweets, Italian pastries and cakes, and house-made gelato." A yellow cake-and-Nutella custard filled wedding cake was a showpiece decorated with crystals and jewels.
 

After the big day, the newlyweds spent a few days in Rome, then went on a cruise to the Greek Islands where they visited Santorini, Mykonos, Athens, and Katakolon. "Our honeymoon was a dream trip," says Carmelisa. "We loved seeing all the different sites and architecture, the food was amazing everywhere we went, and the cruise ship had great amenities, such as the spa."
 

"Planning a wedding can be a trying task, but try to keep calm at all times,' says Carmelisa.”And take in as many memories as you can," says Salvatore. "The day goes by so fast, so stop to take in some moments. You'll have such an amazing day that it'll all be over in the blink of an eye."

 

Long Island Resources Below:

Reception Site: Russo’s On The Bay

Photography and Videography: Tony Lante Photography and Cinematography

Bridesmaid Dresses: Bridal Reflections

Bridal Registry: Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s

Wedding Cake: Russo’s On The Bay



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For Carmelisa and Salvatore, it was three degrees of separation to finding each other. They met through their fathers, who have known each other for over 30 years. "Both of our fathers are auto mechanics and work across the street from each other," says Carmelisa. Salvatore also knew Carmelisa's father and brother, and one day noticed a photo of Carmelisa in her father's office. He decided to reach out to her on Facebook and they went out on their first date the very next weekend.


Salvatore popped the big question on a day Carmelisa thought he planned to casually take her out for breakfast followed by a day at the botanical gardens. "He told me he wanted to take some photos of me there," says Carmelisa. They spent a couple of hours on a romantic walk as Salvatore took photos of her. "Sal then told me he wanted to go to one more place before we went home," says Carmelisa. Earlier that day, Salvatore had asked his brother Mike and Carmelisa's brother Anthony to go to
Flushing Meadows Park and place a wrapped picture frame containing a photo collage of Carmelisa and him along with a bottle of champagne and two g lasses at a gazebo in the middle of the park. When Carmelisa and Salvatore approached the gazebo, Carmelisa was immediately overwhelmed with emotion. "Sal told me to open the frame and I saw the photo collage, and then I turned around and saw he was on one knee holding the ring," says Carmelisa. After Carmelisa accepted to be Salvatore's wife, they went back to her parent's house where both of their families were waiting to celebrate the special occasion.

The couple had a traditional Catholic ceremony with a singer and organist at the Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Ozone Park. The officiate was Rev. Patrick Griffin, C.M., a friend of Salvatore's  from his time working in the marketing department at St. John's University. Carmelisa walked down the aisle in a beautiful Val Stefani gown while her bridesmaids were dressed in purple one-shoulder gowns and carried bouquets of purple Picasso lilies. Salvatore wore a slim-fit Perry Ellis tuxedo and his groomsmen wore slim fitting Calvin Klein tuxedos with Hugo Boss ties, which Salvatore gifted them. After the ceremony, guests threw white rose petals as the couple left the church in a Rolls Royce Phantom limousine to take their wedding day photos at Station Square in Forest Hills.

Photo: tony Lante Photography

The reception was held at Russo's On The Bay in Howard Beach, where the couple had their ballroom lit up in purple to match the bridesmaids dresses. "Our first dance as man-and-wife was one of the best moments of the night," says Carmelisa. For their second dance, the couple hired America's Got Talent finalist Sal Valentinetti, also a friend of Salvatore's from St. John's University, to sing "Unchained Melody" by The Righteous Brothers followed by a few Frank Sinatra songs. Dinner was another highlight. "Sal and I have always loved the food at Russo's on the Bay, and the menu we put together was really great,” says Carmelisa. The event's fare featured an 11-choice menu of traditional Italian food and fish, as well as a clam-and-oyster bar and lobster. "Russo's created a fabulous signature drink for us that contained mango, which is one of our favorite fruits," says Carmelisa. "For dessert, we had a full Venetian hour with lots of different sweets, Italian pastries and cakes, and house-made gelato." A yellow cake-and-Nutella custard filled wedding cake was a showpiece decorated with crystals and jewels.
 

After the big day, the newlyweds spent a few days in Rome, then went on a cruise to the Greek Islands where they visited Santorini, Mykonos, Athens, and Katakolon. "Our honeymoon was a dream trip," says Carmelisa. "We loved seeing all the different sites and architecture, the food was amazing everywhere we went, and the cruise ship had great amenities, such as the spa."
 

"Planning a wedding can be a trying task, but try to keep calm at all times,' says Carmelisa.”And take in as many memories as you can," says Salvatore. "The day goes by so fast, so stop to take in some moments. You'll have such an amazing day that it'll all be over in the blink of an eye."

 

Long Island Resources Below:

Reception Site: Russo’s On The Bay

Photography and Videography: Tony Lante Photography and Cinematography

Bridesmaid Dresses: Bridal Reflections

Bridal Registry: Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s

Wedding Cake: Russo’s On The Bay



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