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Wedding: Emily and Nicholas at Tailwater Lodge, Altmar, 10/13/18

One venue getting a lot of buzz recently is the Tailwater Lodge in Altmar, which opened just a few years ago. Located along the Salmon River, it's a favorite spot for anglers, but it's also a well-appointed venue for weddings.  Emily and Nicholas' wedding was not only my first wedding ever at this venue, but my first of two booked for 2018.  Check out photos and more in today's blog post!

Emily and Nick's wedding required the use of two sound systems, as we would need sound in a total of three locations.  The ceremony took place outside, in a scenic location along the banks of the aforementioned river.

The cocktail hour and reception took place inside the Tailwater Lodge's "porch" and "barn."  I put those both in quotes because the word "porch" usually implies outdoors and the word "barn" often implies visions of a rustic, dusty building formerly used for farming.  But in truth, both of these spaces are indoors, clean, climate-controlled and built purposely for hosting events!

Ceremony site

Normally, I share all the photos in a single gallery, but for this post I'm going to split it into two galleries.  First up, the ceremony.  Although it was a bit chilly and rainy, no problem -- a large, permanently-installed tent protected guests from the rain.  Hot chocolate was served to keep guests warm as they waited for the ceremony to begin.

In the gallery below, you can see how I purposely set-up my sound system as far off to the side as possible, so it wouldn't appear in the ceremony photos.  I also covered the one speaker cable with gaffer's tape so that it wouldn't create a tripping hazard for guests.

From my location, I also had a rare, unique angle at groom Nicholas, catching his reaction as his bride turned the corner and started her walk down the aisle.  And you can see some of the decor used to inform guests of the day's schedule.

Click / tap any photo for full-size viewing.

Now, before the ceremony started, I had a second system set-up in the Porch space, ready to go for cocktail hour.   Once that system was running, I came back to the ceremony area to pack-up this system and move it into the Barn space, where I would set it back up and connect it to my lighting for dinner and dancing.

Before we get to those photos -- and I loved how great the uplighting looked -- here's the music Emily and Nick chose for the key moments of their special day.

Emily and Nicholas' Key Song Selections


  • Processional: Brett Young / In Case You Didn't Know
  • Grand entrance: Russell Dickerson / Yours
  • Recessional: Chris Brown / Forever


  • Wedding party intros: (Multiple songs, one for each couple)
  • Newlyweds' intros: MKTO / Classic
  • First Dance: Hunter Hayes / Still Fallin' (custom edited from 3:42 down to 2:35)
  • Father / Bride Dance: Slash & Myles Kennedy / Sweet Child O' Mine (acoustic, custom edited from 6:35 down to 2:50)
  • Groom / Mother Dance: Fleetwood Mac / Landslide (custom edited from 3:25 to 2:35)
  • Cake Cutting: Maroon 5 / Sugar
  • Last Dance of the Night: Phillip Phillips / Home

What's with the custom edits?  Like many couples, Emily and Nick said they'll cherish their first dance and their parent dances, but they didn't want to be "in the spotlight" for a very long time... so they asked if I could shorten the songs.  That's a more common request, especially when there's a song as long as Sweet Child O' Mine, clocking in at well over six minutes.

Having these requests with plenty of advance notice, I was able to comb through the songs to find the best places to edit them, completely seamlessly. I even surprised myself when I managed to get all of them down under three minutes each!

Photo Album Highlights

Emily and Nicholas selected white uplighting (although my camera seems to make it look a tinge blue) throughout the room.  There was one uplight for each wooden tree-trunk column along the two longer sides of the room, a couple of lights along the far wall.  The fourth wall is actually open to the Porch area, so there were no lights needed there.

Emily and Nick ordered 12 uplights.  Having not been to this venue before, I brought along a few extras just in case.  The extra lights came in handy for lighting up the wall behind the sweetheart table and for covering that "far" wall, as the wooden columns took all 12 of the lights which had been ordered.  For future couples, I would recommend 24 uplights to ensure the sweetheart table and the far wall are covered.  That would leave about 8 lights for the cocktail hour space or to accent other areas like the dessert display.

Click any photo to see larger version

View these photos -- and 16 more! -- on Facebook
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I am very grateful for the 5-star review Emily graciously posted on WeddingWire, TheKnot, Google and elsewhere:

From start to finish, we were confident in our decision to working with Peter. He was always just an email away. Our wedding needed three different setups, which Peter had no problem doing! We also requested special edits for our bridal party introductions, first dance, father-daughter dance and mother-son dance, and they were done perfectly! At the reception, it was hard to leave the dance floor because we were having so much fun with our family and friends. We wanted a dance party and that's what we got! All-in-all, our wedding day was perfect and Peter really played a huge role in making it amazing!

Thanks again to Emily and Nicholas for choosing me as your wedding DJ!  It was great to meet you and to help you celebrate your special day.  I wish you all the best for many, many more years of love and happiness together!  Thanks also to the great staff at the Tailwater Lodge -- a great venue, and I look forward to returning in December for Irene and Robert's wedding!

2 comments on “Wedding: Emily and Nicholas at Tailwater Lodge, Altmar, 10/13/18”

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Peter was beyond amazing to work with! If you are looking for excellent DJ services for your wedding, I highly recommend Peter!
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Since 2011, Syracuse Wedding DJ Peter Naughton has been serving Central New York and surrounding areas.  Peter's stress-free booking process features up-front pricing and just 2 packages that include all the essentials for an unforgettable celebration!
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