Beth grew up in western Virginia (NOT West Virginia, as she is always quick to clarify), in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley. She developed a love of history from her mother, Donna, who brought her and her sister, Sarah, along to courthouses and cemeteries to solve genealogical mysteries. As a kid, Beth hated math, loved playing the alto saxophone, and generally enjoyed the spotlight: as a cheerleader, on stage, or just being the center of attention with her family. In college at the University of Virginia, Beth joined the Chi Omega sorority and discovered a second love, art history. During the summers, she worked as a barista in a local coffee shop and interned at her home town’s Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library. Leaving behind her small-town roots to move to the big city, Beth embraced life in the East Village of New York City while getting her Master’s degree in Museum Studies at NYU. After graduation she worked for the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, eventually becoming Curator of Books and Manuscripts. Now in Washington, DC, working as Director of the Archive and Research Center at the Chevy Chase Historical Society, Beth misses Brooklyn and NYC bagels, but has loved being able to spend time with close friends and discovering the local history of the area.
Growing up in Cape Town, South Africa, Matthew enjoyed putting on plays with his sister Heather for their parents Pauline and David, playing barefoot outside with the family dogs, learning to play the drums, and taking trips to see very special family friends, Susan and Isabel. At the age of 16 Matthew moved to Irvine, California with his dad and sister. After graduating high school, Matthew worked in theatrical lighting and attended the University of California, San Diego. Moving to New York City, he worked as a lighting designer (and at Barnes & Noble—NYC is expensive!) Eventually leaving behind the long hours and uncertainty of the entertainment industry, Matthew transitioned from the behind-the-scenes work of theatre to the behind-the-scenes work of cataloging books at the New York Society Library. He can be very particular, so it’s no surprise to anyone who knows him that he enjoys this meticulous work and now leads the cataloging team at the George Washington University. Matthew loves to travel, whether visiting friends and family around the world or exploring new places, but also loves the feeling of returning home to Washington, DC. Matthew is at his happiest when he is able to share his love of all things South African—biltong, boerewors, the Springboks, and South African music—with his American friends and family.
From Scotch, to extended afternoon frozen yogurt breaks in Central Park, to the big move, to travels together, to hosting game nights, we have been building our life together. We are so excited to spend our special day with you.
Discovering a mutual love of smoky Scotch, Matthew took Beth to his favorite New York bar, Caledonia. Matthew was smitten, but successfully played it cool. It wasn’t until he asked her out on a second date towards the end of the evening that Beth realized he was as interested in her as she was in him.
Growing tired of the hour-and-a-half subway ride between their New York apartments, Beth and Matthew decided it was time to find a place together in the city that had long appealed to them both. They quickly settled into life in the District of Columbia with their good friends and new jobs.
“Let’s start the vacation early and go out for dinner on Friday,” Matthew said. Nothing suspicious about that. Nothing suspicious, either, about “making a quick stop on the way to dinner.” It was only when Matthew suggested taking off their masks for a selfie in the garden on the grounds of the National Cathedral that Beth realized something was up (she is usually the selfie instigator). Her surprise turned to nervous excitement as Matthew got down on one knee and asked Beth to marry him. She’s not sure exactly what she said, but the essence was a resounding yes!
A block of rooms has been reserved at the Washington Hilton in Dupont Circle at a rate of $159 per night plus tax. If you have not yet made your reservation please reach out to Matthew at firstname.lastname@example.org to check availability. Discounted parking at the hotel is available at $42 per night.
Shuttle service will be provided from the Washington Hilton to the wedding, and from the reception to the hotel at the end of the evening. Parking is extremely limited in the Georgetown neighborhood. We highly recommend taking the shuttle, public transportation, or a taxi or ride-hail service.
Guests may take one of two shuttles to the ceremony. The shuttle bus will depart the Washington Hilton at 4:15 p.m. and 4:40 p.m.
Area airports are Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA), Dulles International Airport (IAD), and Baltimore/Washington International Airport (BWI). DCA is by far the closest to the city with the best transportation options.
When we pictured our wedding day, we never imagined that we would still be impacted by the pandemic. Nevertheless, out of concern for the safety of all guests, we will require everyone attending the wedding to be fully vaccinated. Those who are not vaccinated will have the option to attend virtually. This has been a difficult decision, and we are saddened that this may mean that we can’t celebrate our big day with people we hold dearest. We thank you for understanding.
We hope while you’re in town, that you’ll explore the city we hold so dear. Some of our favorite activities we highly recommend:
• Take a stroll or a jog on the National Mall
• Visit one of our favorite museums: Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture, National Portrait Gallery, Library of Congress, and National Archives
• Hike Rock Creek Park
• Pay your respects at Arlington Cemetery
• Say hi to the cheetahs at the National Zoo
During the weekend of June 4, there are specific events that you can attend outside the wedding festivities