April and Rich first met in high school. “We were in the same trigonometry class sophomore year,” says Rich. “If it weren’t for my math skills, April probably would never even know who I was. I would like to say we just hit it off from then, but that was not the case.” Fourteen years later, they would connect at a Warriors game that did not go in their home team’s favor. They decided to meet up and commiserate together and discovered, all those years later, they had a strong connection.

April says it didn’t take long for her to realize Rich was “the one.” “Well, except for those 14 years between the time we met and when we first started dating,” she laughs. “Not only was he the most kind-hearted, genuine, and giving person I had ever known, but he was my perfect balance. The yin to my yang. The Clyde to my Bonnie. The Jay to my Bey. After four years together, I still felt the same way after first spotting him in a crowd as I did when we first fell in love.”

Once engaged, the pair knew they wanted a traditional ceremony and a “really fun” reception. “Between my extended family and all our friends, from the youngest to the oldest, we knew this was definitely a group that liked to party,” says April. “That’s why one thing we agreed on from the start and was non-negotiable throughout the planning process was an open bar.” 

April and Rich decided to have custom bobble heads made of each of their bridesmaids and groomsmen. “We were determined to make these bobble heads resemble our wedding party as much as possible, so there was a lot of back and forth with the bobble head makers,” she says. “They did a great job and it was hilarious to see these bobble heads transform into mini statues of our friends.”

Two weeks before the wedding, the couple still hadn’t found a wedding coordinator and both were starting to get overwhelmed and stressed. “By then we were so close to the wedding day that most of our free time was consumed with scrambling to finish making arrangements, and we hadn’t been on a date in forever,” recalls April. “Rich saw that the San Jose Jazz Festival was going on that day. We had gone to the festival years ago when we first started dating and it was one of our favorite dates. It was a great way to just take a step back, take a deep breath, and remember that at the end of the day this was about the two of us getting married and spending the rest of our lives together.  Everything else would fall into place.”

The wedding took place at St. Vincent’s School for Boys. The ceremony was held at the beautiful church, and the reception followed in the outdoor courtyard.

“We had a couple of themes to give the reception a personal touch,” shares April. “Because we met in high school, instead of a seating chart we had a wedding yearbook. The back of the yearbook included a photo image of the actual message Rich wrote in my yearbook senior year, with pages for the guests to write their own messages.  It was fun to see our guests looking through the yearbooks and finding old photos of themselves and all our friends and family.”

—Darren Elms