The Lauren Huxta and Michael Leonardi Wedding
Meet newlyweds Lauren Huxta and Michael Leonardi
Photography by Dubin Photography
Sometimes all it takes to bring a couple together is a little matchmaking. That was the case Lauren and Michael, a setup engineered by Michael’s parents and Lauren’s best friend’s parents. They obviously knew what they were doing, because the two hit it off immediately.
After two years of dating they had just found an apartment together in Bronxville right around the holiday season, and Lauren was adamant about having a real Christmas tree in the house. While she was out one weekend day, Michael went out and bought ornaments, lights, and the works and surprised her with a beautifully decorated tree by the time she got home. Then a few days later he added a very special decoration—a little black jewelry box with an engagement ring inside.
After their festive engagement, they waited about six months to start the wedding-planning process. “We wanted either a spring/summer wedding or September wedding” Lauren says, “and after looking at about four other venues, we came across the Marina del Rey in Throgs Neck and knew right away it was the place for us.”
There were a lot of reasons why this venue worked for them, starting with its originality. “One great thing was that neither of us had been to a wedding there before," Lauren says. "The staff was also extremely accommodating and we got a lot more for the value than other places we looked. But my favorite thing about the place was that it overlooked both the Throgs Neck and the Whitestone bridges—which are the two bridges that brought us together, since I'm from Yonkers and Michael is from Syosset, Long Island.”
The two most important aspects of the day for both of them were the food and the music. When asking about their theme, Lauren says, “That was pretty much it! We had an abundance of food, everything from a full suckling pig, three carving stations, a sushi station, a pasta station, a cheese station, a pizza station, and a raw bar during the cocktail hour alone. There was so much food during the cocktail hour that some of our guests thought it was the dinner.”
Being they were married on June 8th, they wanted the flowers to be very summery, light and cheerful. “When we met with our florist, we told her bright, happy, and fun and they actually put together a few options for arrangements right in front of us at the appointment.”
“Michael and I were on the same page with every aspect of the wedding and he was very helpful throughout. One condition that he had his heart set on was he had to walk out on the dance floor to the Metallica song, 'Enter Sandman.' Michael is a huge Yankees fan, and that's what Yankees’ closer Mariano Rivera walks out to when he comes into a game.”
Some other personal touches was Michael’s sister, Laura, sang a touching version of “My Valentine”, and Lauren’s family danced together to the Earth, Wind and Fire song “September,” which has become somewhat of a Huxta sibling tradition at each of their weddings. Also, when guests left, they were handed freshly baked donuts, coffee, and bottles of water for the road.
“I think we were actually the last to leave,” says Lauren. “We had a nine-piece band and they were amazing. Everyone was dancing all night, especially us.”
“One piece of information I would share with future brides, is if you have another dress to change into for the reception—do it! I was so hot from dancing and my dress was so heavy that I would have even put on a pair of sweatpants if I had them with me!”
New York City
3724 East Tremont Avenue
LI Paramount: Dave Clark and the Renegades
585 North Broadway
Kelli & Co.
Premium Chocolate Outlet
370 Market Street
Saddle Brook, NJ
Deanna’s Country Store
3991 Route 43
West Sand Lake, NY
115 Lockwood Avenue