Sonoma Garden Wedding: Barry and Zarife

Barry and Zarife’s Sonoma garden wedding was elegant, playful, and entertaining, which is only fitting for the union of an Elvis impersonator and his green-thumbed bride. The couple chose a lovely, summer day for their Cotati wedding, which took place at the private home of a dear friend, and was coordinated by a Lissa Ferreira, a longtime friend and former theater compatriot of the groom.

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The bride’s dress was a lovely pale pink, highlighted by just the right amount of sparkle. For a few rather tense moments, it looks like the groom intended to be married in a Day-Glo orange tux- not the best fit for a Sonoma garden wedding! (He changed into elegant black tails moments before the ceremony but not before he’d given everyone a good laugh).

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The couple exchanged vows under an arbor in the back garden, attended by Sheri and Michelle (MOH and bridesmaid, respectively) and Roscoe, their dashing Best Dog. 

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Barry met Zarife online, and says she had been “winking” at him for some time before he asked to meet her. The day they met, something clicked, and they ended up spending the entire day together. “He was just so easy to talk to,” she says. That spark that brought them together is still evident today, and it’s obvious they know how to laugh together.

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Zarife’s son, Riza, was on special leave from his post with the military to give his mother away. Zarife’s joy at having him there filled her to overflowing. She soon recovered and was smiling again during formal group wedding photographs with the wedding party and her flower girl.

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The reception area echoed the same pale pink of the bride’s dress–a muted palette that worked well for their Sonoma garden wedding–and simple, yet elegant table settings. The silver “Love” place card holders were an especially sweet touch. At the sweetheart table, there were wedding wineglasses for the bride and groom etched with their names and the date.

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Guests included some of Barry’s oldest friends from high school, and a number of fellow theater performers. After dinner and toasts, Barry performed two Elvis classics, “Can’t Help Falling in Love” and “The Wonder of You.” The couple’s first dance was a group affair which included the Best Dog.

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After sharing cake the couple led the way to silly fun on the dance floor, where everyone enjoyed themselves to music curated by DJ Michael Hassel of My Taste Entertainment.

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Perhaps they enjoyed themselves too much; everyone was surprised by a visit from the local police. The bride quickly made friends with the officer, who good-naturedly posed for a photo.

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The evening ended with more dancing and twinkle lights under a sliver of moonlight, a brilliant end to the couple’s Sonoma garden wedding. Barry and Zarife, wishing you every happiness together as you live the dream life you vowed to create together.

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Check out Barry and Zarife’s slideshow, set, of course, to an Elvis classic:

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