Carissa + Jeff: A night of surprises

When Carissa and Jeff said their “I dos” in late September, we really felt like we had known them for a long time.Well, that’s because we did know them pretty well!You see, we’d been filming these two lovebirds since earlier in the year, when Jeff’s mom, Jo Ann, hired us to created a Love Story film to be shown at their wedding reception.We had a blast interviewing Carissa and Jeff, as well as their parents — Dan and JoAnn, and Elmer and Jill. The story of how they met — or almost didn’t if not for Jeff deciding to change courses and meet friend Jake out at the Harp in downtown Milwaukee — was worthy of several laughs. And it was even more fun to surprise the newlyweds in their own Love Story with interviews from members of their wedding party that we taped without Carissa and Jeff knowing. Their attendants shared so many stories about Carissa and Jeff — let’s see: wine, tacos, singing like Cher, naked shopping cart riding (more on that later!) — that we wish the film could have been 20 minutes long, but there was a lot of action to be had at the reception, so we kept it short and sweet!This was our first time filming in the stunning St. John’s Cathedral in downtown Milwaukee, and if you haven’t attended a Mass there, you really ought to, just to luxuriate in a beautiful building with a very welcoming congregation. And then it was on to the Bradley Pavillion at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts. This space, which is grand all on its own, had been transformed with elegant decor in whites, pinks and champagne. Not only was the cake from Simma’s Bakery a towering piece of art, so too, was a magnificent ice sculpture — emblazoned with a large K — from which guests could get a martini or cosmopolitan cocktail poured through.When we are starting to edit a Sneak Peek, we go through all the speeches, toasts and other audio, looking for words that inspire us or reveal more about our couple. In this case, Jeff’s brother, Matt, had just the right things to say about his older brother and new sister-in-law. We also couldn’t resist mining the notes that Carissa and Jeff exchanged before the ceremony, because their sentiments were so heartfelt.We love all the beauty and love reflected in this Sneak Peek, but there is so much more to come in their longer film. We haven’t had a chance to even mention their amazing band, the Rabid Aardvarks.And you’re probably wondering why we title this piece “A night of surprises.” Well, those were thanks to Jeff serenading his bride at the end of the night and the romantic horse-drawn carriage that pulled up at the Marcus Center to whisk them away.We’d also like to personally thank JoAnn Krause for all her hard work for this wedding, which really showed in every detail; St. John’s Sacristan Roger Truckey for all his help; Sarah Stevens of I Do Photography (can’t wait to see her images from the big day); Lynn Brueggemann of Sazama’s Fine Catering, whose help and guidance were invaluable; and Gunther from Exciting Events, who worked extremely hard to make sure Carissa and Jeff’s Love Story was shown perfectly for the guests.If you’d like what you see in the Sneak Peek, check back in later for their full film, and explore the links below if you’re interested in the wedding professionals who helped carry out this lovely event.Cheers,Cindy