Newlyweds Annmarie "Annie" and Joseph Annunziata of Coram found a very untraditional venue for their wedding. Joseph explains.
Annie and I met in 1991 at a horse show in Middle Island Arena. We were both competing in quarter horse reining events. She had been riding since high school. I began riding in 1985. I've always wanted to be a cowboy.
We would run into each other at horse shows here as well as out of state. Her remarkable ability and uncanny talent with horses amazed me. It was about two years later that we began our long courtship.
One evening in 2010, I took Annie to dinner at Lombardi's in Middle Island. She asked, "Why are you wearing a jacket?" I said, "I like to dress up every now and then." She said, "Leave it at home." I couldn't. I had a ring in the pocket. During dinner, I got down on one knee, gave her the ring and asked her to marry me.
In February 2012, after an unforeseen two- year delay, we went to the Town of Brookhaven for a marriage license. We then learned that the justice of the peace would not be able to marry us until March. We didn't want to wait because February is the month for lovers.
We were in the parking lot sorting out what to do when I got a call from my buddy, Don Monti. I explained the predicament to him. Don snapped back, "Stay where you are. I'll call you back within the hour. Make sure you answer the phone."
Within minutes, he called back and said, "You're getting married next week at the Certilman Balin Adler & Hyman law office in East Meadow at 7 o'clock." Annie and I canceled our weekend plans so she could buy her wedding dress.
On Feb. 27, 2012, Annie's mom walked her down a white runner to the law firm's reception desk where I was waiting. There was a beautiful white cyclamen persicum plant atop a pedestal in front of the desk. Brian Ziegler, a partner with the firm and Village Justice of Woodsburgh, officiated the wedding ceremony. Don and his wife, Patti, who provided a tape of the "Bridal Chorus," were our best man and matron of honor. Fred Skolnik, another partner in the firm, videotaped the ceremony on his iPhone. It was just joyous!
After the ceremony, we had a Champagne toast then went to dinner at Baldino's restaurant in Plainview.
Our wedding day was beautiful in its simplicity. It just goes to show you that all you really need is love, some very good and dear friends, and someone to marry you despite the short notice.
Annie and I own Coram Equestrian Center, where she raises and breeds quarter horses. She still rides and competes in shows. I'm also a Realtor for Prudential Elliman.