Lowell Caulder & Adam Tetenbaum
October 8, 2017. Healdsburg, California
Adam Tetenbaum and Lowell Caulder met towards the end of their senior year at the University of Pennsylvania. Despite being in a fraternity, Adam was closeted and shy, while Lowell was social and boisterous – the life of any party. They did, however, develop an initial spark while discovering shared views regarding people, the world, relationship, goals, and family.
After graduation, Adam moved to San Francisco and Lowell relocated to New York City. Since Adam’s family was also in NYC, he would often fly out to spend time with Lowell, leading to a serious – albeit long-distance – relationship. After a year, Lowell decided to take the plunge and moved to San Francisco where their romance blossomed.
It was nearly seven years later when Adam secretly gathered their San Francisco friends in a clearing at Buena Vista Park, where he and Lowell happened to “stumble upon” their best friends partying with a DJ and light show. That night in June, during a secret dance party in the forest, Adam dropped to one knee and asked Lowell to marry him.
The two grooms-to-be shared the same vision of hosting a fall wedding in Sonoma, which would be held at the Chalk Hill Winery. On Friday, Adam’s parents hosted a Shabbat dinner for family and friends at Shed – an eclectic market, restaurant, and event space in Healdsburg – where guests were greeted after traveling in from Nashville, NYC, London, and Shanghai.
Welcome festivities continued Saturday, when the rest of the wedding guests arrived for a “Fiesta Under the Stars,” inspired by Lowell’s travels and Adam’s heritage. Everyone wore white and spent the night enjoying live music, dancing, and a selection of empanadas, ceviche, and grilled meats in an open-air market.
When the wedding day arrived, the grooms were married under a chuppah on a hilltop surrounded by breathtaking views. Blessed by two Rabbis – Adam’s family Rabbi from New York, and the Rabbi who’d led Lowell’s conversion to Judaism – the ceremony also included being joined under the ketubah by Adam’s parents, and Lowell’s mother and brother.
For cocktail hour, all 200 guests transitioned to a glass pavilion where drinks and hors d’oeuvres were served as the sun set. Promptly at 7 p.m., a curtain was drawn back to reveal the reception – an exquisite, forest floor-inspired space that transformed Chalk Hill’s dressage arena.
Dinner tables were encased by wood pergolas draped with fall foliage, helping to shrink the scale of the expansive venue. Candles and hanging light boxes illuminated the space, creating the perfect ambiance for an intimate dinner party. After the grooms entered and completed the hora, dinner began with family-style salads and roasted vegetables from Chalk Hill’s own garden, followed by entrees of beef filet and pan seared cod paired with the estate’s wines.
When guests weren’t eating, they were on the dance floor and celebrating to the music of a live band and DJ. The newlyweds cut their cake while dancing to Hot Chip’s “One Life Stand,” and relished in that moment of having everything they wanted – friends, family, each other, and chocolate cake.
>Written by: Lauren Malamala
Planner, Floral and Event Design: KBY Designs Tel Aviv, Israel; Cake: Perfect Endings San Pablo, CA; Grooms' Atiire: Canali;