At 32, Michael Grossman knew his mother’s greatest wish was to enjoy a mizinke, the Jewish dance honoring parents whose last child has married. Though he’d been set up a hundred times, the New York bachelor flew to a friend’s Midwestern wedding solo. There he chatted all night with Meg Mitchelson, 31, who was recently divorced. "We met up again six weeks later," she says, "and the connection was instant."
When Michael told his mom that he’d found someone terrific, he stressed that they’d met at temple; after all, it was a Jewish wedding. "But then he confessed that I wasn’t Jewish, lived in Kansas and had three children," says Meg. "Luckily, they didn’t hold it against me!"
Two years later, the couple wed in front of 320 guests at Cipriani 42nd Street, a historic bank building in the heart of New York City. The nuptials included several Jewish wedding traditions embraced by Meg, who had converted to the religion. "We circled one another and then the children, together, binding us all as a family," she says. Tree branches—from the homes of Meg’s and Michael’s parents as well as the Kansas City compound where the new family would soon settle—formed part of the chuppah. "And, of course," Meg adds, smiling, "my mother-in-law got her mizinke." –Kim Acosta
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A Slam Dunk: Who says a wedding deserves only one Sylvia Weinstock confection? The celebrity baker created a basketball cake for Meg’s nephew, Connor, who was also celebrating something special—his 13th birthday.
Fields of Gold: The bride carried a bouquet of wheat in memory of her grandfathers, both of whom were Kansas farmers. The stalks, harvested by her uncle, were wrapped in a ribbon embellished with a diamond-studded tie tack that had belonged to "Papa," her father’s dad.
Bellinis and ... BBQ?: Cocktail hour featured tributes to two gustatory creations: Bellinis, the champagne-and-peach-puree cocktail invented by Giuseppe Cipriani in Venice in 1948, and Gates barbecue sauce (served with chicken croquettes), a Kansas City legend.
Thinking Ahead: One of the reasons Meg and Michael chose to be married at a national historic landmark was that they knew the building had staying power; the couple hope to expand their family one day, and want to be able to show future kids the scene of their wedding.