A Summer Garden Party Wedding at Buttermilk Falls Inn in Milton, New York

For their later summer wedding, Hannah Yu (34 and an anesthesiologist) and Ed Tolson (35 and a hedge fund technologist) headed to Buttermilk Falls Inn in Milton, New York, a quaint country escape in the heart of the Hudson Valley. “We live in Queens, New York, but neither of us are from the New York area. We wanted a place where our friends and family could spend a weekend but still be within driving distance of New York City,” Hannah says. “We found Buttermilk and fell in love with the natural, farm-like setting, the beautiful scenery and views of the Hudson River.” With a summer garden-party theme in mind, the locale could not have been a better fit, with its tranquil Swan Pond, organic gardens and vast orchards. To highlight the setting, Hannah and Ed hosted the ceremony and reception outdoors, where guests got spectacular views of the natural landscape and sparkling Hudson River. The ceremony took place on Buttermilk’s front lawn, giving way to an 18th-century farmhouse that infused the celebration with a feeling of warmth and familiarity. Coral and ivory rose petals lined the aisle, guiding Hannah and Ed to a romantic garden-inspired wedding arch rich in lush greenery and coral-colored blooms. Adding a personal element to the proceedings, the pair sealed a bottle of wine from a Portuguese vineyard they had visited together and love letters to each other in a wooden box in lieu of traditional candlelighting. “We will open the box and read the letters if we ever hit a rough patch in our marriage—or in five years, whichever comes first. Then we will seal the box back up with a new bottle of wine and letters,” Hannah says. 

After the ceremony the newlyweds led their guests to Buttermilk’s reception patio overlooking the river for dinner and dancing. Signature cocktails like the Settebello, with pear vodka, St-Germain and prosecco, flowed and details like a photo booth, games and a surprise choreographed dance to “Gangnam Style” kept spirits high and the good times rolling. “Ed is an avid cornhole player, and he wanted to include a cornhole tournament on the day of the wedding,” Hannah says. “He created small trophies and medals, and our guests played against him in the hours before the wedding. He lost to one of his groomsmen by one point in an exciting finals match.” A tip from Hannah: “Planning a wedding is so overwhelming, so don’t try to do it all yourself. Look for ways to include your family and friends in the planning and preparation. And having a day-of coordinator is invaluable.” —Libby MacCarthy