Bonnie Lemesh and Dave Katleman, both 59, have already sent invitations to their June 13 virtual Hawaii wedding, complete with a video screen backdrop of palm trees, golden sand and lots of blue ocean.
With about 50 family members and close friends, – from Brooklyn to California, watching on Zoom, Denise Daley, a retired San Francisco marriage commissioner and friend of the bride and groom, is to lead the ceremony, which is to be held in the couple’s living room in San Mateo, Calif.
Ms. Lemesh, a dietitian in San Mateo, and Mr. Katleman, a software engineer with Oracle in Santa Clara, Calif., whom Ms. Lemesh called “the smartest man I have ever met in my life,” will host a brunch immediately following their nuptials that will include white fish, salad, bagels, lox and cream cheese, and be shared not just by the bride and groom, but by all 50 of their guests.
“We will all enjoy the same meal, at the same time,” Ms. Lemesh said. “Did you know that bagels and lox are staples at most Hawaiian weddings?”
Ms. Lemesh and Mr. Katleman, who will both be marrying for a second time (their first marriages ended in divorce), have been in communication with a New York deli, Zuckers, about preparing their wedding-day brunch, as well as a specialty-food delivery company, Goldbelly. Each attendee will receive their brunch the day before the wedding and will eat after the ceremony. In addition, guests will receive leis, tiki cups and mai tai mix.
“It was Bonnie’s idea, and I think it’s great,” said Mr. Katleman, who met Ms. Lemesh on the dating website, J-Date, in 2011.
“Besides, she has been needling me to marry her ever since we began dating nearly 10 years ago,” he said, laughing. “So this is a really cool, really nice way to get it done.”
Ms. Lemesh said that her two children and two grandchildren, as well as Mr. Katleman’s three children, will all be at their Zoom wedding, which will start at 10 a.m., Pacific time.
“We have been receiving great feedback from all of our guests,” she said. “Everyone is excited to be getting together, and eating together, they’re just loving this.”
The couple had originally intended on getting married at a real wedding venue in August, but switched gears because of numerous restrictions related to Covid-19. The California Governor’s Office has authorized virtual weddings through June 2020.
“I started thinking that if we went ahead and had a real-deal wedding, it might have never come off, and even if it had, not everyone might have been able to make it,” said Ms. Lemesh, who will wear what her husband described as a ‘Moo Moo wedding dress’ on her big day.
“But a virtual wedding, plus a real brunch from New York,” she said. “Now tell me, who’s going to want to miss out on that?”