Rhonda and Lawrence

November 4, 2011
New Smyrna Beach
Photographs by Kelly Canova Photography

As the saying goes, timing is everything. That was certainly true when it came to Rhonda Markos and Lawrence Shah getting together. They lived hundreds of miles apart, she in Florida, and he in Michigan. The two met at the 2009 wedding of mutual friends in which Rhonda, who works in traffic safety management, was the maid of honor, and Larry, a research scientist, was the best man. “Our friends knew we were perfect for one another long before we ever did,” says Rhonda. “They were hoping we’d like one another.” Turns out, their friends were right. Not long afterward, Rhonda and Larry started dating. Soon, they knew they were destined to be life partners. Their intimate fall wedding took place on the beach with every detail reflecting their unusual tastes, from the Rice Krispies wedding cake to the distinctive cocktails. “We truly are best friends and complement one another perfectly,” says Rhonda, who is known for her sense of style. Larry, on the other hand, is affectionately known as the resident geek; he leaves the style decisions to Rhonda. “Our favorite thing to say is that we are better together than we are apart.” 


"We wrote our own vows and exchanged them in front of family and friends. Taking the time to write your own vows, then saying them to the person you love is simply amazing.”


Theme: When science meets style. Says Rhonda: “We had fun with the theme. Our ‘mad scientist’ drink featured ‘smoking’ dry ice, and our cake maker made science-themed cookies shaped like atoms and beakers.”
On the Choice of Venue: The ceremony took place on the beach; the reception, at a private home in New Smyrna Beach. “We wanted a small gathering at a place we love. Our goal was for our guests to feel like they were at an intimate house party,” says Rhonda. “It was simple and casual, while also being extremely elegant with personal, creative touches.” 
Most Memorable Moment: “Our first official kiss as husband and wife was a memory we’ll never forget,” says Rhonda. “We looked into the crowd and saw a sea of smiling, happy faces that love and support us.”
Guests: 60
Bridal Gown: One-shoulder, Grecian-style dress by Ralph Lauren
Hair and Makeup Stylist: Linh Nguyen
Videographer: Kelly Canova Photography
Caterer: Arthur’s Catering
Cake: Sunnyside Sweet Shop
Florist: Rhonda and Lawrence took a “green” approach and purchased potted orchids from the local farmer’s market. “Our guests still have the orchids; some are blooming for a second time. It’s a perfect way for loved ones to remember your special day,” says Rhonda. 
Stationer: weddingpaperdivas.com
Lighting: Paper Lantern Store
First Dance Song: “La Vie en Rose” (Louis Armstrong)
Honeymoon: Five days in the western Caribbean



Colorful paper lanterns adorn the backyard patio reception


 Rhonda and Larry’s unique style was reflected in the selection of food with cookies shaped like atoms and the three-tiered Rice Krispies wedding cake

The couple’s signature “mad scientist” cocktail

A sign in the sand indicates that Rhonda and Larry were married there

The bride shares a moment with one of her lifelong friends

Wedding guests enjoy the beachside setting


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