John and Cate Dugan
Graduating together from Benilde St. Margret High School left Edina girl Cate Lombardo and Wayzata’s John Dugan as good pals. It wasn’t until the pair were both studying in Iowa—she, attending Drake Univesity and he at nearby Iowa State University—and ran into one another at a party (and couldn’t seem to leave each other’s sides) that they started dating. The pair was married five years later in May 2010.
While fully wrapped up in the joys of wedding planning, the couple faced tragedy as Cate’s mother Anna grew sick, losing her battle with cancer three months before the wedding. Keeping her mother a part of the planning despite her faltering health was of utmost importance to Cate and her family, who hired wedding planner Sally Berry from Mother of the Bride wedding planning to take the reigns.
“When my mom was in the hospital, our wedding planner would visit with wedding table cloths, so we were able to set up the table in the hospital room to look exactly like it would at the wedding,” explains Cate. “This meant a lot, because my mom was able to be a part of the day.”
Cate’s decision to have her dress custom made by designer Kristen Olsen of the Dressmaker was also inspired by her mother, who wouldn’t have the strength to for dress shopping expeditions and instead suggested Cate “get her dream dress made.” After several meetings with Olsen, going over sketches and pictures with her mother in tow, Cate says, “the dress was perfect. It was very special to me.”
On the morning of her wedding, Cate, along with all eight bridesmaids and two flower girls, had their hair done by Spalon Montage stylists. (“Since I’ve had my hair done at Spalon for years, I knew I could trust them to make the girls shine,” explains Cate.)
A beautiful ceremony took place at Cate’s family church, Our Lady Grace Catholic Church, with Cate in her off-the-shoulder, tiered skirt custom gown and John in a tux from Men’s Warehouse and a wedding ring from Jared Jewelers. Bridesmaids donned knee-length, deep purple dresses from Priscilla of Boston.
A gorgeous reception was held at Interlachen Country Club, where the couple covered the ballroom in delicate ivory shades with pops of purple and lime, and filled it with towering flower arrangements from Arts & Flowers and sumptuous linens from Aarcee Party Rental. “The theme for our wedding was ‘rustic romantic,’ and Interlachen was the perfect location to pull that off,” says Cate.
Personal touches and mementos such as bracelets, flowers and guest favors peppered the reception, honoring Cate’s mother, as well as John’s father Michael. Because it was Cate and her mother’s favorite flower, orchids could be found everywhere from the bride’s hair to table-top spreads.
Three Sons Signature Cuisine provided the evening’s divine dinner of beef and poultry dishes, as well as the cake. But the biggest culinary hits were proved to be the late night snack bar, filled with delicacies like mini pizzas, and a candy buffet (all of which was in shades of purple or green, to fit the colors of the evening, of course). Instant Request DJs provided the soundtrack for the romantic, family- and friend-filled night.
For Cate, hosting her party in her hometown was really the only option. “It was extremely important,” she explains. “All of my greatest memories have happened here.”
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