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A 'Haunted Mansion' Themed Wedding

By Jaimz Dillman

When you combine two folks and their mutual love of theme parks you're bound to get a simply charming wedding. And that's just what bride Frieda Lamberg had in mind as soon as groom Allen Melder popped the question. Lamberg said, "We wanted the decor to give a nod to the Haunted Mansion where he formally proposed. It's our favorite Disney attraction."

Meeting through a Disney group for adults over 40. Melder said, "My opening line was, 'so are you an entomologist?'" and the relationship continued on from there. They'd originally planned on a small gathering of friends at one of the resorts. But, if you know anything about Disney fans, more is truly the merrier and the venue was switched over to the clubhouse at the couple's home.

Lamberg is a thrifty gal and snagged a gorgeous dress from Facebook marketplace that fit like it was made for her. Creating the floral for the entire wedding party in hues fit for a ghostly ballroom celebration was one of the many DIY projects that made the event so special. Lamberg explained, "Little touches of purple, black, and emerald green were combined with ethereal and Edwardian touches of rainbow moss, ferns, and lace."

From baking the wedding cake and cupcakes, cooking the entire reception spread- a southern feast with a nod to Melder's Louisianan heritage- and sewing all the bridesmaid's dresses- Lamberg had her hands full in addition to her full-time job studying bugs and part-time spot as a cast member at the Studios.

It was important to both Frieda and Allen to have those closest to them involved in the day. I'm lucky enough to count Frieda as a close friend and happily watched their relationship grow. Once wedding bells were ringing, I was also asked to do the honor of officiating their ceremony! Another friend, DJ Dan, provided music and a surprise appearance as the flower boy, then kept the party going later at lunch. Lamberg's 4 children were most of the bridal party along with more members of their Disney group- Christy Cosgrove, Jodie Brunelle, and Michelle Diekman. Melder's long-time friend, Jyl, escorted the groom down the aisle and served as best woman. After they were pronounced husband and wife, we all had to giggle at the ladybug hitching a ride on the bride's train, as she is indeed an entomologist.

Additional hands came in to play with family and friends pitching in for set up and decorating with items collected and created for the Gracie Manor vibe. Mickey-shaped cookies decorated in cast member costumes were an extra special treat for guests made by Kim Hazlett of Cookie Cutter Creations. Her daughter, Kacie, served as photographer. A haunted house cutout provided a backdrop for a round of selfies with the newlyweds and a sign posted at the entryway welcomed all Foolish Mortals. Centerpieces included stacks of books- a nod to the mansion's library- and velvet pumpkins for the season. "Each centerpiece cost under $10 to make," said Lamberg.

Mr. and Mrs. Melder danced to Simply Happy by American Idol contestant Effie Passero. Lamberg said, " We discovered her from a Postmodern Jukebox concert. Simply Happy described us perfectly." After lunch was had, the shoe game was played, and the two exited in matching "Just Married" Mickey ears. Goodbyes and well wishes were given as they drove away in Allen's new Porsche.

Part two of the wedding events happened just a bit later with a group attending Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party, appropriately changed for the occasion. Cast members at the Haunted Mansion made magic for us after hearing about the couples' big day which left the bride in happy tears. "I feel like I've been in a fairytale", said Lamberg. And Melder added, "She wasn't the one I was looking for but she is who I needed to find." The Mr. and Mrs. will be off to honeymoon shortly in Hawaii and look forward to living their very best happily ever after.


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