Elsie Pritchard & Ian Prior
October 1, 2010

Published in Newport Life Magazine July 2011

What’s the measure of a really good date? Getting together for another within 24 hours. For Elsie Pritchard and Ian Prior, the next day couldn’t have come soon enough. “Ian and I were introduced to each other through a mutual friend, who thought we would hit it off,” says Elsie. “After our first meeting, we were both floored at how much we liked each other.”

Ian proposed at Race Point beach on the tip of Provincetown, Cape Cod, in the summer of 2009, the location chosen because of its distinctive place on a map. “We would always be able to point out where we were engaged,” says Elsie. The same could be said for where the couple chose to marry – the beautiful Rosecliff. “While we were dating, we would frequently visit the mansions,” says Elsie. Ian’s parents John and Cheryl Prior live in Wickford, so visiting Newport was a short hop. “I will never forget our tour when the guide mentioned that the mansion could be rented for weddings, we both knew this had to be it.”

No surprise, then, that the theme for the wedding was “gilded.” The 165 guests arrived to a reception bedecked in gold, ivory and champagne colors. In describing the feeling wearing her wedding dress, Elsie said, “I felt unstoppable … like I could conquer the world.” No, it wasn’t a blue suit with a red S; it was Pnina Tornai.

The couple’s vision had materialized, and Rosecliff had been returned to its venerable past. Gold tone candelabras overflowing with white roses, orchids and hydrangeas might have fit right in with one of the Oelrichs’ (the mansion’s original owners) gala balls.

Given the surroundings, it would be easy to assume that the couple’s first dance as husband and wife was a string quartet playing something by Salieri. “We chose ‘Grow Old With Me’ by John Lennon,” says Elsie. “Ian is a huge Beatles fan and he knew right away that he wanted us to dance to this song.” Kind of like he knew that after meeting Elsie for the first time, the next date couldn’t come too soon.

Tuxedos/Suits: Jos. A. Bank, Newport
Rings: Gendron’s Jewelers, Coventry
Invitations: Papers, Newport
Rehearsal Dinner: Atlantic Beach Club, Middletown
Flowers: Small Pleasures, Providence
Caterer & Cake: Russell Morin Fine Catering, Newport
Bridal Party/Bride and Groom/Guest Transportation: Viking Tours of Newport and Newport Wedding Trolley
Photographer: Fleur de Lis / Peter Silvia & Faith Dugan, Newport
Wedding Night Stay/Guest Accommodation/Post-Wedding Brunch: Hotel Viking, Newport