On Saturday Casey and I attended our first Syrian-style wedding. What many of us think of as a "traditional" wedding ended the minute we stepped outside the church doors. We exited the church to be greeted with Middle Eastern desserts, dancing and music. Once I saw that, I knew this was going to be one crazy reception.
The reception took place at The Palace Center in Allentown. The Palace Center used to be an ice skating rink called the Ice Palace, but now it's been converted into a large banquet hall/conference center.
Good thing The Palace Center is big ... There had to be at least 700 people there for dinner and another 200 invited for the after-dinner party. I never thought I would be at a wedding that had close to 1,000 people.
Once we found our table and everyone was seated, the show began. The band started to play some Syrian-style music and all of sudden three women ran to the dance floor and started dancing. A few seconds after they got started, five or six men joined in. It was probably one of the coolest things I have ever seen.
After the opening dance was over, the band lined up on either side of the main door holding swords in the air to make a path for the wedding party to enter the hall. It was an entrance worthy of a king.
After dinner was over, the band was back and the dance floor was flooded with people. All of a sudden, the bride and groom were on top of people's shoulders and they just start throwing money up in the air. This might have been even more amazing than the Arabian Knights dance and grand entrance.
It was a really neat to experience the music, dancing, food, and traditions. Have you ever been to a "non-traditional" wedding in Lehigh Valley?