Live from Peoria, Illinois, it’s Saturday Night starring this week’s hosts, Val and Pat and featuring a whole room and balcony of special guest stars. Now please welcome this week’s hosts and the bride and groom of this wonderful wedding day, Val and Pat!
I’ve known Pat Stokowski since he was a baby and now he’s getting married! Where did all the beers...I mean years go? He’s marrying Valerie Wojs, the two of them have been together for years and today they become bride and groom! The wedding is taking place outside the Gateway Building on the Peoria Riverfront.
Pat and Val wanted an unplugged wedding, free from everyone holding their phones up and taking photos and I love that idea! So I put the MBIP Camera away and enjoyed the ceremony. The wedding ceremony was so nice, equal parts laughter, love and heartfelt sentiment. Before you know it, they’re now husband and wife. And you know what we must do now...drink!
After the ceremony everyone filed upstairs and I got a photo of the groom’s proud parents. There’s Chris looking so beautiful and pretty and below her is her husband Jeff, but we all know him as Moon. And Moon is looking pretty too, he’s looking like he’s pretty well on his way to a horrifying hangover on Sunday! Time to let the party begin!
My first stop of the evening is the bar and I said hello to my new best friend of the night, the lovely, smiling bartender offering me a bottle of Budweiser! We would repeat this process many, many times through the evening.
Here’s some different angles of the room. It was ll lit up and very sparkly!
Random photos of guests and friends, part one! It was great to see so many friends at the wedding reception. Those that I didn't know, I just ignored.
There was a nice balcony outside with a beautiful view of the Murray Baker Bridge and the Peoria riverfront The last photo is a reunion shot of a group of guys that caused a lot of trouble back in the day! From left: Tim Waugh, Paul Berres, Pete Storts, Steve Cicciarelli, Jeff “Moon” Stokowski, Tim Hennessey, Jim Rettig and Yours Fooly. This picture led to a special moment of the evening...
The Marty-Jim Man Kiss!
I was standing next to Jim for a good reason. We have a secret that we’ve shared for decades and decided to let it out at Val and Pat’s wedding. The kiss marks the moment that the truth was finally set free. When we were seniors in high school we had special feelings for each other and confessed them to Sister Michael Dukakis. She was sympathetic to our unique relationship and quietly married the two of us in the boys locker room while everyone else was eating lunch and smoking cigarettes and pot in the bathroom.
We lived separately and our union was known only to the three of us. Eventually we fathered a young daughter we affectionately named Patty Melt. We gave Patty Melt to a young Lithuanian couple who were looking for a daughter because we were too busy drinking and doing other things and we had no time to raise a young child.
As the years went on, Jim decided he needed a more conventional lifestyle and married his lovely wife Cheryl and they've settled into a fabulous life in Portland. I moved to New York and eventually got arrested for drinking beer on the sidewalk in midtown Manhattan and moved back to Peoria, cloaked in shame. Both of us feel lighter now that this secret is finally out of the bag! And now it’s time for further celebration and drinking! I love you, Jim!
Meanwhile, back inside it was time for toasting. Lots of friends and family gave nice, heartfelt toasts and I got photos of Pat and Moon saying wonderful words with a raise of the glass!
Random photos of guests and friends, part two: Making my way back to the bar!
Here’s the wedding cake. Yeah, I’m not sure about the top of it either, but I’m going to keep moving along here because it’s frightening me a little bit!
Dinner time! They had a bountiful buffet with a lot of delicious selections. I got a salad, salmon, pasta and a roll. The food was very tasty and perfectly prepared! I was seated at table number 16 with, from left: Jim, Karen, Dori, Tim, Laura, Maureen, Mike, Tim, Tina and me, myself and I. I told an entertaining story about the time when Tim, Tina and I all lived together and I hid down in the basement once when I thought Tina was being murdered upstairs! You had to be there. Or maybe not.
The Traditional Chewing of the Hands!
This is an unusual ritual that young people do at weddings these days. They chew a couple of fingers off of each others hands. I’m not sure what this symbolizes but at least they’re not eating Tide pods.
As Val checks out her missing fingers, she and Pat went to the dance floor for the traditional bride and groom wedding dance. They looked beautiful out there and it was a delightful dance. Cheers to the happy couple!
Then the tables emptied and the dance floor was rocking and rolling and the wedding reception kicked into high gear. At this time I realized I had drank about 27 and a half beers and it was time to say, “Goodnight Moon,” and sneak out the back door.
Thanks to Val and Pat for inviting me to the wedding, it was a beautiful wedding ceremony and the reception and dinner were fun and fantastic. Congratulations to Val and Pat and I wish you both a lifetime of love and happiness!