After the outpouring of local support for Brecknock Hall’s wedding giveaway to two local soldiers last year, Peconic Landing, the event’s organizer, has decided to do it again.
Active duty Army soldiers Cathrine and John Schmanski of Riverhead, who had been stationed in Afghanistan, were married last Veterans Day at Brecknock Hall, a restored 19th-century manor house in Greenport, in a ceremony donated by the Peconic Landing lifecare community, which owns the building, with support from two dozen local merchants.
Now stationed at Fort Stewart in Georgia, the couple are expecting their first child. They fell in love while stationed at a military base in Germany in 2009 and were officially married by a justice of the peace in Arizona in 2010. But they didn’t have a wedding ceremony until the Brecknock Hall event.
This week, the search began for the 2012 Brecknock Veterans Day wedding couple.
“It’s powerful to see individuals and businesses join together to honor those who serve our country in such a meaningful way,” said Peconic Landing president and CEO Robert Syron. He added that last year’s wedding was a testament to a community that unites for a good cause.
“We’re embarking on this year’s journey to Nov. 11 with an incredible sense of gratitude,” he said. “Giving back is a priority at Peconic Landing and this effort is particularly meaningful since many of our residents are veterans.”
This year’s winners will receive catering, entertainment, flowers, photography and numerous other wedding day donations from 20 local sponsors.
Couples must submit their stories to firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday, Aug. 5. They’re asked to include details about their ties to the East End, Suffolk County, Long Island or New York State and whether one or both serves or served in the military.
Peconic Landing would also like to know whether they’re on active duty or have recently returned from a combat zone, the number of tours of duty they’ve completed and any special circumstances or honors they’ve received.