Christine Patrissi, left, and Leah Nieves married on Nov. 3.

Christine Patrissi, left, and Leah Nieves married on Nov. 3. Credit: Park Ave Studio

Christine Patrissi and Leah Nieves met by chance a decade ago, when both were University at Buffalo undergraduates.

Nieves, then a sophomore, said she was on her way to make a cup of tea in a campus lounge when she stopped to chat with Patrissi, a senior and dormitory resident adviser, who was putting up a bulletin board in a hallway.

“She was gorgeous,” Patrissi said, “and I thought she might be interested in girls." For Nieves, the feeling was mutual but novel, because, she explained, “I had never dated a woman before.”

They said their love grew as they crossed paths at ice-breaker meetings and campus programs. They eventually became late-night study partners and traveled on holiday breaks to stay overnight with Patrissi’s sister, who then lived in Nesconset.

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Patrissi, a nurse practitioner, said that after dating for six years, they got engaged in April 2021 in Niagara Falls.

Led to believe she was taking a graduation photo, Patrissi said she wore her lab coat and stethoscope. They were finishing up with the photos when Nieves unexpectedly dropped to one knee, took out a ring and declared, “You are the love of my life. . . . Marry me.” Patrissi said she said yes through joyful tears.

Although they live in Montvale, New Jersey, Patrissi said the couple chose to celebrate their Nov. 3 wedding and reception at The Mansion at West Sayville to accommodate their 120 guests, a number of whom are close family members the couple had visited often on Long Island. Patrissi said that her sister, with whom she shared a room growing up and who now lives in Miller Place, helped plan the wedding and bridal shower, and was the matron of honor. Nieves, a dental hygienist, said that her aunt, of Massapequa Park, was an honored guest.

In tribute to their diverse backgrounds — Patrissi is Irish-Italian and Nieves is Puerto Rican and Guyanese — the couple combined their last names into one. “So we’re now Mrs. and Mrs. Nieves-Patrissi,” Patrissi said.

She added, “Blending our cultures, traditions and backgrounds has been complex, but so beautiful.”

WEDDING VENUE

The couple wed and held their reception at The Mansion at West Sayville.

WINE AND DINE

Lessing's Hospitality Group catered the reception. The couple estimated they spent at least $40,000 on the wedding.

HONEYMOON

The couple plan to vacation in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, in September.

LET'S DANCE

"You’re Still The One," by Shania Twain

FAVE RAVES

Five things Nieves and Patrissi can't live without when it comes to the other: Humor, trust, respect, thoughtfulness and adventure.

HOME BASE

Montvale, New Jersey

NewsdayTV's Elisa DiStefano and Newsday food writer Marie Elena Martinez take a look at the hottest places to dine on Long Island this summer.  Credit: Randee Daddona; Newsday / A.J. Singh

A taste of summer on Long Island NewsdayTV's Elisa DiStefano and Newsday food writer Marie Elena Martinez take a look at the hottest places to dine on Long Island this summer. 

NewsdayTV's Elisa DiStefano and Newsday food writer Marie Elena Martinez take a look at the hottest places to dine on Long Island this summer.  Credit: Randee Daddona; Newsday / A.J. Singh

A taste of summer on Long Island NewsdayTV's Elisa DiStefano and Newsday food writer Marie Elena Martinez take a look at the hottest places to dine on Long Island this summer. 

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