Real Weddings Dallas 2019
Real Weddings

Preschool sweethearts crowd-surf and shoot tequila at fanciest frat-party wedding in Dallas

Preschool sweethearts crowd-surf at fancy Dallas frat-party wedding

Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney Chanon and Josh Katz were married on November 17, 2018. Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
The bride's white and blush Vera Wang Couture gown inspired the color palette for the whole wedding.  Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
Before walking down the aisle, the wedding party kicked things off with a shot of tequila.  Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
GRO Floral and Event Design provided the flower arrangements. Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
The groom went for a quick spin before tying the knot. Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
Photographer John Cain captured special moments throughout the day.  Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
The ceremony was held at Congregation Shearith Israel. Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
GRO Floral and Event Design created the couple's circular Chuppah. Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
The new Mr. and Mrs. Josh Katz had been preschool classmates.  Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
The glittering rose-gold dance floor featured platforms for guests to dance on. Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
The reception was held at The Ritz-Carlton Dallas. Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
The catering team at The Ritz-Carlton Dallas created the couple's towering cake.  Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
Guests were never thirsty. There was a bar at every corner of the ballroom, and shots were served at the end of the night. Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
Emerald City Band kept guests entertained all night long.  Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
Thoughtful party favors were among the many special touches of the day. Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
The bride changed into a party dress to kick up her heels. Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
The reception was every bit the "fancy frat party" the couple dreamed it would be.  Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
Event planner Jeffrey Kollinger helped bring the couple's vision to life.  Photo by John Cain Photography
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding
Courtney and josh wedding

If frat parties had professional event planners, they might look something like Josh and Courtney Katz's wedding.

For their big day on November 17, 2018, the bride and groom envisioned throwing “the fanciest frat party of all time.” Event planner Jeffrey Kollinger delivered with countless details reflecting the couple's playful personalities.

"I wanted a party," says Courtney. "There was nothing cookie-cutter about it. My friends and family brought an energy that's not possible to re-create. We have memories to last a lifetime. It was the most magical night of our lives."

In fact, it was a night that was years in the making — 26 years, to be exact.

Preschool classmates, Josh Katz and Courtney Chanon had run in the same circles their entire lives. In college, Josh acted as pledge master to Courtney's brother. After college, he roomed with her best friend. The couple started dating shortly thereafter, and Josh put a ring on it on December 29, 2017.

"We had just signed a lease to move in together," Courtney says of the proposal. "He told me we had to take measurements for an interior designer, and I was so annoyed. Begrudgingly, I walked into the most gorgeous room, decorated with massive balloons that said, 'Marry Me?' We partied the rest of the night with those we love at Standard Pour, where he'd decorated the patio with balloons that read, 'Engaged AF.'"

That night, family and friends got a preview of what to expect on the wedding day. Courtney’s mother and Kollinger took charge of much of the planning, giving Courtney and Josh time to focus on the fun stuff, like food, drinks, and music.

The ceremony took place at Congregation Shearith Israel, where Courtney’s great-grandfather, grandfather, and father all served as past presidents, and it was traditional from beginning to end — well, sort of.

The men wore cheetah-print Kippahs, and the wedding party threw back shots of Don Julio 1942 Tequila before heading down the aisle.

Eschewing tradition, Dallas String Quartet serenaded guests on electric strings with tunes by Drake, Bruno Mars, Chamillionaire, and Ellie Goulding.

Following a brief cocktail hour, the bride and groom greeted their guests at The Ritz-Carlton Dallas for a reception no one will forget.

GRO Floral and Event Design brought their A game with numerous custom floral arrangements. A glittering rose-gold dance floor featuring custom stages centered the room, serving as the main attraction throughout the night.

"Walking into the reception was magical," says Courtney. "No matter where you took a picture in the room, you had a gorgeous backdrop. And most importantly, there was a bar in each corner with custom Styrofoam cups. I made sure there wasn't glass anywhere; it's the biggest wedding party foul when someone drops their glass on the dance floor."

Emerald City Band played all night long, and toward the end of the evening, guests were served vodka- and tequila-soaked gummy bears, test-tube shooters, and Jello shot syringes.

"My favorite moment of the night was when I went crowd-surfing," says Courtney. "My mother's face was priceless. I didn't want the party to stop."

Wedding planner: Jeffrey Kollinger 

​Ceremony venue: Congregation Shearith Israel

Reception venue: The Ritz-Carlton

Bridal gown: Vera Wang Couture from Warren Barron Bridal

Flowers: GRO Floral & Event Design

Hair: Sonia Trevino Hair

Makeup: My Fabulous Faces

Photography: John Cain Photography

Videography: Elixir Entertainment

Live painter: Tanner Lawley Art

Entertainment: Emerald City Band

Ceremony music: Dallas String Quartet

Dance floor: DFW Dance Floors

Cake: The Ritz-Carlton Dallas

Neon sign: Shag Carpet

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To submit a wedding for consideration, email stephanie@culturemap.com. Weddings must have taken place around Dallas-Fort Worth since July 1, 2018.