Peter was great to work with. His play list kept our guests on the dance floor until the very end of the night!
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Wedding: Kate and Brendan at SKY Armory, Syracuse, 7/16/16

Kate and Brendan are an amazing couple and put together a wonderful wedding at one of Syracuse's newest venues, SKY Armory.  Although I've heard plenty of buzz about the venue since it opened, this was my first opportunity to visit SKY Armory in person, so I wasn't quite sure what to expect.  I'm pleased to say the staff was awesome to work with and the entire experience was a great success.  Check out the post for photos and some great ideas you can "borrow" for your own wedding.

SKY Armory has three levels available, with the option to use just one level, or the top two levels combined, depending on availability and how many guests you're planning to host.  (See floor plans and details on SKY's website.)  Kate and Brendan used the Wells Ballroom on the second floor, which combines the building's original brick walls with some modern decor.  One side of the room consists of windows overlooking South Salina Street, often referred to as Syracuse's "main" street.  The other side of the room leads out to the three-story atrium which overlooks Walton Street, the heart of the popular Armory Square neighborhood which inspired the name of this venue.

Here's a timelapse video of the setup: it takes about 90 minutes to set-up for a wedding, but you can see it here in 90 seconds.  Disclaimer: the portion of the set-up seen here only lasted about 75 minutes... due to the double-parking situation during the load-in, I didn't stop to set-up the camera until everything was up on the second floor and I had moved the van to a better location.

The staff was extremely helpful -- since I hadn't been to SKY Armory before, I asked event planner Chelsea if I could stop by sometime during the week leading up to the wedding, for a quick look around.  She cheerfully honored the request, so I could see where to park, how to get from the service entrance to the ballroom, and she even provided a printout of the floor plan specifically for Kate and Brendan's wedding.  That helped for a smooth set-up on wedding day.  While I usually stuff my equipment cases and bags underneath the DJ table, or somewhere out of the way behind me, SKY Armory allowed me to stash it all in a nearby storage room, which was a nice perk.

Before we get to the photos, here's what Kate and Brendan selected as the key songs for their reception:

  • Wedding Party Intros: Europe / The Final Countdown
  • First Dance: Savage Garden / I Knew I Loved You
  • Bride / Father Dance: Stevie Wonder / Isn't She Lovely
  • Groom / Mother Dance: Louis Armstrong / What a Wonderful World
  • Cake Cutting: Maroon 5 / Sugar
  • Bouquet Toss: Cyndi Lauper / Girls Just Want to Have Fun

If you're going to get married in downtown Syracuse, you might as well make it a Syracuse-themed wedding, right?  In the photos below, you'll see how each of the guest placecards were designed to look like Polaroid photos of various Syracuse-area landmarks including Armory Square, the Everson Museum and the water tower over Franklin Square.  Guests would then look for the table which had a matching photo on its centerpiece.  It's an idea I've seen once before, but I still think it's an awesome idea to highlight the local area, so I loved seeing it, with Kate and Brendan giving it a different twist.

Click any photo below for a larger version.

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There are even more great photos (and much better quality, at that) over on George Jweid Photography's website. He was the official photographer for the wedding day (you can see him in action in the very last photo above).  Near the bar, a big flat-screen monitor displayed photos that he shot earlier in the day, right next to his photobooth... guests enjoyed both throughout the reception.

Thanks again to Kate and Brendan for selecting me as your wedding DJ!  I had a great time playing your reception and I wish you all the best together. And thanks again also to the staff at SKY Armory for being so cooperative -- I'd love to return for more weddings in the future!

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