Angélica Anahí Garza and David James Runfola met online and stayed in contact through FaceTime and iMessage before meeting months later. “For our first official date, Dave took care of everything and just texted me the address where we were meeting up. I was a little late, but everything worked out, and we ended up having a really fun night,” Anahí says. After a little over wo years of dating, Dave proposed in Grand Central Station. “English is not my first language, and with all the excitement, I forgot every single English word I know, and all I could say was ‘Si!’”
The two actually eloped in New York City in the spring of 2017 but always knew they wanted a “real wedding,” where Anahí could walk down the aisle with her father. They decided to celebrate their second anniversary with a big celebration in her home country of México. “If I was going to bring my American family and friends to my country, I wanted them to see the real México. In other words, I wanted them to get to see its colors, meet its people, and try its real food—not just what you find at a resort,” the bride says. And that’s how they landed on hosting the occasion in San Miguel de Allende. To help guide and make their dream become a reality, they hired Marisol Herrera of Elemental.
The day before the wedding, the couple had a traditional callejoneada, where they paraded in the street with a mariachi band, two huge puppets that looked like the bride and groom, and a donkey. Guests followed them, dressed in all white and comfortable footwear. Clay shot glasses and flower crowns were handed out to keep things festive before ending at Maria Xonocostle for the rehearsal dinner.
The bride originally wanted to wear her dress from two years prior, but because of some stubborn stains, she had to buy a new one. She wore her mother’s wedding shoes as her something old. “Exactly 30 years later, they help another bride to walk down the aisle,” she says. And her something borrowed was her cousin’s cathedral-length veil.
At La Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel, the couple had a full mass all in Spanish. “Dave does not speak any Spanish, so he had to practice the parts of the ceremony that he read aloud. He did great!” the bride says. During the service, a few Mexican traditions were incorporated like the lazo, a rosary placed in a figure eight around them, symbolizing their everlasting union.
After exchanging rings and sharing a kiss, the cocktail hour began on the rooftop of the art school Instituto Allende with panoramic views of the city. Then guests went to find their places for dinner on the main patio, guided by tequila shot place cards. “Since this was our cotton anniversary, we welcomed our guests with cotton candy at their seats,” Anahí explains.
Everyone dined on a four-course meal that ended with their cake, topped with a figurine of a skeleton bride and groom kissing. “Dave found it at the San Miguel’s market, and we both immediately loved it,” Anahí says. While everyone was seated, the bride’s cousin was the designated translator, as David’s twin brother and best man gave his speech in English and Anahí’s sister and maid of honor gave hers in Spanish.
During the party, songs in English and Spanish were mixed in, and a churro cart satisfied everyone’s sweet tooth. Dave and Anahí had their first dance to “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” by Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons.
At around 1:00 a.m., chilaquiles were served—“perfect to get everyone in the mood to keep the party going,” the bride says. “There was a time during the party when someone handed Anahí a microphone. She started rapping to this Spanish song!” Dave says. “No idea what she was saying, but I had never seen her do it, so watching her rap was my favorite part of the reception.”
At 3:00 a.m., everyone left to try and get in as much sleep as possible before their flights home. And the couple went to Playa del Carmen for their honeymoon.