August 31, 1968 - Margaret Ann Wallace and David Keith Gadoury exchanged vows in North Kingstown, Rhode Island.
Fifty years later, the couple celebrated their anniversary surrounded by the families of their three children, Jean-Marc, Armand and Paige.
The celebration weekend officially started on Saturday morning when everyone arrived for greetings at Dad and Mom's house in western Cranston.
After cups of coffee, professional photographer Leah Coughlin arrived to take a series of portraits. Armand's daughters Keara and Ella posed in front of the most recent family photos, that are soon to be updated.
After brunch, Gadoury family tradition required at least one game of croquet on the regulation course featuring Dad's hand-crafted croquet set.
And, good family croquet begins with a lesson in technique and strategy. Video tutorial.
Before and after the game, the family enjoyed a day long feast. Everyone had a hand in brunch including waffles, smoothies, eggs, and various meats and cheeses. Paige and Dean made a gorgeous fruit infused punch bowl, and later concocted a delicious New England Clam Chowder. Jean-Marc and Armand combined skills to serve a surf-and-turf specialty including beef tenderloin and sea scallops.
The night concluded with another family tradition, a game of dominos.
On Sunday, the families made their way to the Point Judith Block Island ferry in Galillee, Rhode Island.
Upon arrival at Block Island, everyone had options to head shopping or pick up lunch at the many options in New Shoreham. Jean-Marc and Charlene opted for lunch at the National Inn. Mom and Dad liked that option too, and were treated to some of the most exquisite chowder and peel and eat shrimp you will ever have.
Tourism has always been a central feature of Gadoury family excursions, and the trip to Block Island was no different. We hired Fran, a local author and tour guide, to drive us around the island to see lighthouses, geography, native history, cemeteries with ghost stories, and historic buildings.
The tour concluded by dropping us off at the Atlantic Inn, where we enjoyed drinks and tapas menu and the scenic porch and front lawn, accompanied by jazz musicians.
The highlight of the day was the celebratory dinner, inside the Atlantic Inn on their sun terrace. Mom and Dad ordered sea scallops and lobster, and the whole family enjoyed several courses served expertly by our waitress, Sara.
We do not have a picture of the mad dash in the evening rain, or the breezy and wet ferry ride home. But we all made it safely to land after our 3 hour tour, stuffed with wonderful food and lasting memories.
Later the next week, Jean-Marc and Charlene took the folks to Essex, Connecticut for dinner at the historic Griswold Tavern and to see the play "Oliver" at the Goodspeed Theater.
Concluding, it is fitting to mention that at dinner on Sunday night in Block Island, after Paige prayed the blessing giving thanks to God for great parents who made a life long commitment to God and to each other, that Armand offered a toast. Lifting our glasses, he said, "to the bride and groom!"
Indeed! Congratulations on 50 years of marriage.