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Maria Barbarino and Michael Giordano Wed

This first column looks at the wedding of a couple who share a hometown, but attended different high schools.

Long Islanders Maria Barbarino, 31, and Michael Giordano, 32, became Mr. and Mrs. on Sept. 25 in front of 225 witnesses.

On their wedding day, "Everything was perfect. It was 85 degrees and sunny," and the water views at the Venetian Yacht Club in Babylon, where the reception took
place, were just stunning, says the bride. An ivory-and-black color theme set the stage for an elegant reception, complete with personalized wine bottles as wedding favors, and freshly rolled cigars for those who cared to partake outdoors.

The bride and groom met at Marist College in Poughkeepsie. Because both were business marketing majors, they were frequently signed up for the same courses. A good friendship developed, even more so when they discovered they had much more than their college majors in common: incredibly, both had grown up in Lynbrook. Still, they had never run into each other in their hometown because they had attended different schools– the bride, Lynbrook High School; the groom, Malverne High School.

Once they graduated from college, the two came back to Long Island.

"We would frequently bump into each other after we graduated college at the local bars and clubs, at least once or twice a year," Maria says.

Although she didn't feel at all like going out on June 21st, 2008, her friends cajoled her into venturing out to Minnesota's, a bar in Long Beach. There, as fate would have it, she ran into Michael.

At that point, they hadn't seen each other in about a year. Both romantically unattached, they spent the evening catching up on each other's lives. And from that night forward, a romance ensued. A year and a month later, Michael proposed to Maria on one knee by reading her a poem he'd written about his love for her and how their paths had kept crossing.

Ceremony: Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Malverne

Reception: Venetian Yacht Club, Babylon

Florist: Flowers by Floyd Harbor, Shirley

Bakery: Rolling Pin Bakery, East Setauket

Limousine: Carizma Limousine, Elmont

DJ/Band: Bravura Entertainment, Woodbury

Bridal Salon: Paradise Bridals, Patchogue

Photography: The Glenmar Studio, Roslyn

Videography: Dream Day Productions, Massapequa

Claudia Copquin is a journalist, author and blogger. She wrote "The Neighborhoods of Queens" and co-wrote "Fast Track Networking." For more information, visit  www.ClaudiaCopquin.com.

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