CARL KOLOGIE: Dancing in barn a treat
June 16, 2013 3:00 AM
by CARL KOLOGIE

When was the last time you went to a barn dance?

Naturally, the younger generation would answer “Huh?” and it might even be a memory tester for seniors.

Last Saturday I attended a barn dance, but the invite came in the form of a wedding invitation and the reception was held in a barn.

Before you get the wrong impression, it was not just an ordinary wedding or an ordinary reception. It was absolutely elegant in every way, and had your head spinning with the beauty and innovative extras everywhere you looked.

Jessica Lynn Mock, daughter of Dan Mock and Susan and Frank Kovalcik, was the beautiful and bubbly bride, and the handsome groom was Nicklas “Nick” William Karas, the son of William and Mary Jo Karas.

Hosting the wedding was Christine Toretti, a longtime friend of both the Mock and Karas families.

It got under way midafternoon when the upward of 300 guests were shuttled by buses from a parking area near Claypool Estates just off Route 422, to Pumpkin Hill, the Toretti residence at the top of Oak Drive.

Following the ceremony, guests were treated to an incredibly delicious array of hors d’oeuvres while mingling with the wedding party at poolside and the adjoining tennis courts.

Buses then shuttled everyone to the barn at the bottom of the hill where dinner and dancing were the order of the evening.

And what an evening it was.

Lighting in the barn provided a festive atmosphere with small white strands of lights on every rafter and pillar throughout the building, which had been a major project for the past three months in preparation.

I never knew the inside of a barn could look that good. It was evident that a lot of time and work went into the project. Guests were all abuzz about the transformation and beauty of the setting.

A room near the front of the barn had a sign above the door that read, “Cookies and Coffee Closet.” And that is exactly what it was, and it also included gifts for each guest as a remembrance of the event.

Following the obligatory comments and toasts from family and members of the wedding party, it was time for dinner.

As you would expect, there was an Italian flavor to the meal as the groom is the chef at Nap’s Cucina Mia and has also studied at a cooking school in Italy, the country the couple will visit for their honeymoon.

Dinner was served buffet style from different areas in the barn, with the exception of the pasta. Guests wound their way outside to the bottom floor where the pasta was being served by the caterers from the Bloomfield and Strip District areas in Pittsburgh.

There was music by a DJ until 11 p.m. And that’s when a live band took over and played until the last of the guests dropped in the wee, wee hours of the morning.

And, there was a taco truck that pulled in serving freshly made tacos. That was shortly after the 11th hour.

Everyone left with a smile on their face and I’m sure the unforgettable evening will be the topic of many future conversations.

But in case you had any ideas, Christine Toretti made it perfectly clear when she stated, “I don’t do (any more) weddings.”

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