"My husband and I knew each other for a long time before we fell in love. Our high school friends
merged during breaks back home from college. I asked Joe to take me on a ride on his
motorcycle, and pretty soon he was picking me up a couple nights a week to ride around.
"We kept in touch until after we graduated from college and both ended up living in Chicago. The same patterns occurred and we found ourselves meeting up regularly. After years of insisting to our family that we were only friends, Joe and I found ourselves in love and not quite sure how to break the news to everyone.
"Joe and I realized that our relationship would last after a week-long road trip to Savannah for New Years Eve. After several more vacations together Joe proposed to me on a trip out to Seattle, in Olympic National Park.
"We got married Thanksgiving weekend in Rockford, IL, where we both grew up -- to the great joy of our mothers. Joe and I are beer enthusiasts and regularly brew at home. This set the tone for our wedding and the decorations at the Prairie Street Brewhouse. We sent out beer coasters for our save the dates, growlers were the base of our centerpieces, and beer bottles wrapped together in ribbons held the bridesmaid’s bouquets.
"My mother-in-law, Chris Sarna, did a fantastic job finding unique decorations for the brewery. We had strings of lights hanging behind the wedding party on the large brick wall, a wine barrel wedding cake table, and hanging strings to hold the Polaroid pictures our guests took.
"My bridesmaids and I got ready at Elements Salon, owned by Joe’s aunt Maria Lungo. She and her staff made the whole wedding party look wonderful. My husband and his groomsmen wore custom-made tweed suits from Harry’s Suits, and they all looked stunning! We had Moonlight Jazz, a 14 piece orchestra, play at our wedding. The dance floor was always full.
"The whole day was a whirl of emotions. The anticipation while getting ready, the anxiety of walking
down the aisle, the joy of taking our vows in front of all our friends and family, and being able to
celebrate with everyone afterwards. Joe and I couldn’t be more grateful for all the wonderful memories of that day. We would especially like to thank our mothers, who worked together to make the wedding so incredibly beautiful." -- Monica Sarna
Ceremony Site: St. Bridget’s Church / Reception Site: Prairie Street Brewery / Photography: George Street Photography / Wedding Consultants: Joe and Monica's mothers / Bride's Gown: WToo Aveline / Hair + Makeup: Elements Hair Salon + Spa / Bridesmaids' Dresses: Macy’s Bridal Salon / Formalwear: Harry Suits / Stationery: Minted / Flowers: Balloons and Flowers by Haley / Catering: Hoffman House / Entertainment: Moonlight Jazz / Cake: Katherine Wolf