New York City couple continues wedding during blackout – disappointed, but still dancing

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Courtesy of Emma G. Fitzsimmons

As Amy Rosenthal was walking down the aisle to her soon-to-be husband on Saturday, everything went dark. The New York City couple was getting married in the Plaza Hotel when all of a sudden the power went out for a wide stretch of the city’s west side.

The wedding fell victim to the city’s Saturday night blackout, which affected thousands of homes, businesses, subway trains and elevators. The Plaza was affected, too, and Rosenthal said she didn’t know what was happening at first.

“At first I was just hoping that a fuse had blown and that, in any minute during the ceremony, it was going to come back,” Rosenthal told CBS New York in a Facetime interview from her honeymoon. “But as each minute passed, it became more and more concerning that this was going to be a much larger issue.”

Rosenthal and her now-husband Craig Silverstein has been planning their wedding for over a year, and it certainly was not going as planned. “There was no light or electricity or working toilets for the next three and change hours,” Silverstein told WCBS.

They finished their ceremony by the light of cellphones and cameras, then made their way to the reception, which was lit only by candles.

While the couple made the best of the situation, they said they were extremely disappointed with how things turned out, especially since they flew in about 200 friends and family members for the wedding.

It’s those people who bring light into the couple’s lives – literally. Guests still danced and sang during the reception, until hotel staff moved the party to a nearby club that still had electricity to continue the celebration.

“It was exciting. We got married and we did it,” Silverstein said from their honeymoon in Italy. “But emotionally, it was a lot. It was a lot to have it not be what you hoped it was and what you planned.”

In a statement to CBS New York, The Plaza said the hotel’s generators were fully functioning, “powering safety lighting and the hotel’s security measures, in order to ensure the safety of all hotel guests, visitors and colleagues.” Their full statement is below:

“The Plaza has served as a backdrop for many of the nation’s most illustrious weddings for more than 100 years. When the citywide blackout hit New York City on Saturday evening, The Plaza team took immediate action to preserve a beautiful and memorable wedding experience for the impacted bride and groom, both at The Plaza and in securing a new location for the remainder of the celebration. Following the candlelit ceremony and cocktail reception, a team of dedicated colleagues escorted the bridal party and hand-carried the wedding cake to a neighboring restaurant un-impacted by the blackout. The Plaza’s exemplary service staff accompanied the bridal party for the entire evening.”

The couple and their lawyer said they plan to speak to the hotel about getting a refund, CBS New York reports.

“Behind the scenes, it was chaos,” Silverstein said. “We got through it with family and friends and people want to support us and be there and have a good time.”

They thought they’d have an unforgettable wedding at The Plaza – and boy, did they ever. “It ended up being memorable, but not for the right reasons,” the groom said.

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