The $25,000 Wedding

Venue: The Merry Go Round Pavilion at the Bear Mountain Inn, Bear Mountain
Ambience: Festive & Rustic
Guests: 100

A wedding at the Merry Go Round Pavilion is definitely one your guests will remember. The stone-and-timber rotunda boasts “Great Camp” Adirondack architecture and is set in one of the most beautiful locations in the Hudson Valley — but that’s only the beginning. The centerpiece of the Pavilion is a spectacular merry-go-round and dance floor that both scream: “Fun!”

Site Fee/Food & Beverage Rental: $1,500
In addition to private use of the Pavilion during your ceremony, cocktail hour, and reception, you’ll enjoy your first merry-go-round ride as a married couple.

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Ceremony: Officiant’s fee only
There is no charge for the ceremony, which is set up just outside of the Pavilion.

Cocktail Hour & Buffet-Style Reception: $16,354
For just under 17K (including tax and service charge), you get a cocktail hour with two cold displays and seven passed hors d’oeuvres and a premium open bar all night long. The reception includes Champagne toast, buffet-style dinner, and a personalized four-tier wedding cake.

Flowers: $2,000
Same as for the $10,000 ceremony, except you’ll want to include centerpieces (flowers and candles used for the ceremony can be repurposed for the reception). For 10 low-glass arrangements with the same flowers as the bridal bouquet, you’ll pay around $1,200.

Music & Lighting: $2,500
You can keep your music costs low by opting for a DJ instead of a live band, which many people prefer anyway. At Jimmy Dee Music Productions in Briarcliff Manor, owner Alex Lampert says that though costs vary depending on the day of the week and options chosen, $2,500 will buy you a DJ behind the booth for the duration of your reception, an emcee to keep the crowd lively, and a medium uplighting package (one of the top lighting trends for weddings) with changing colors (if desired), plus an “extra,” like custom monogram lighting.

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Photography: $1,500
Wedding photographers can charge upward of $5,000, but Jeremy Landolfa, owner of Visual Concepts Photography in Newburgh, says that for $1,500, couples “who don’t know exactly what they want in a package” or don’t have a budget for all the bells and whistles should have no problem finding a skilled professional photographer to photograph their nuptials.

Vera Wang White Collection Gown & Rental Tux: $800–$1,200
Want a gown with a designer name — without the designer price? Check out the Vera Wang White Collection of gorgeous dresses, priced from $199 at David’s Bridal in Yonkers. And at Ridge Squire Tuxedos in Rye Brook, you can rent a tux for $160 for classic black to $225 for blues and greys.

Here’s what a different budget could get you…


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