Around Town: A Weddfest with a happy couple and a fine dinner in Pittston


Ever been to a Weddfest?

I looked it up, and there’s no definition, so allow me – if I may – to tell you about it.

Last Saturday, I was at my first-ever so-called “Weddfest”– and it was something special.

Friends Mike Levandowski and Janna Michael, of Wilkes-Barre, celebrated their wedding day in a big way. About 600 people turned out to celebrate with their favorite couple after the ceremony at Saints Peter and Paul Church in Plains Township.

Janna’s brother married them, making it a day her beloved father, Yogi, would have been proud to see. Yogi passed away in 2012, but his presence was felt on his daughter’s day.

The reception that followed was all kinds of fun, crazy and all out fabulous at the pavilion up the road from Birchwood Hills, also in Plains Township, where photographer Brittany Boote captured the entire event that went well into the evening.

Food and drink were supplied by some of the best spots in town: Malacari’s Produce and Deli had its wines and ice-cream; Susquehanna Brewing Company brought the beer; Plains Pub put out the signature wings; Dukey’s Café prepared many amazing entrees; Magda’s Pizza and Deli had their acclaimed pies; and Bettelli’s Villa baked the cake. The night before, the rehearsal party was held at Bernardine Hall, below the church, catered by Patte’s Sports Bar, with the bride’s family contributing their delectable Lebanese food.

Kudos to the Weddfest duo for using all local folks to cater their affair.

In addition to the food and drinks, Axelrad in Wilkes-Barre (a screen printing and graphic design company) made fun Weddfest T-shirts and party favors.

The party also included live music from bands Hat Tryk and Zayre Mountain, as well as deejaying from Honey Pot Productions.

When you think about it, who has 600 friends to invite to a wedding? Many are lucky if they can think of 100. It’s a testament to their personalities. Both Mike and Janna are full of life with great spirits, so it’s easy for people to be attracted to them.

This is a couple who knows how to have fun – as evidenced by this extravaganza. I may need to tag along as a third wheel on their next vacation. I let them spend their honeymoon in Puerto Morales alone; I figure that was nice of enough of me, right?

Midweek, I made my way to Pittston for our Wilkes-Barre POWER! event at Rikasa on Main and let me say this: If you like upscale dining, a delightful décor and superior service, this is the place for you.

Owner Nancy Medico and manager Bill Kammerer couldn’t have been more attentive. Excited we chose their venue for our July event, they put out a full spread along with passed hors d’oeuvres.

We spent the night mingling alongside the long bar, connecting with other members at the front tables, and watching the regular diners pass by as they made their way back to the elegant dining room.

My take on the place? It’s a perfect spot for a romantic evening or for your family’s next celebration.

I enjoyed my time on Wednesday so much that, Friday night, my sister and I took my parents there for their wedding anniversary.

Big supporters of local businesses, we love finding different eateries at which to dine.

Pittston is full of many wonderful people. Lots of locals seemed to be there, as did guests from the Back Mountain, Kingston and other nearby areas.

So, when thinking about Pittston, remember that it’s made great strides the last few years with a happening downtown area and new stores.

Take a trip down Main Street.

Tell them Mike from Times Leader sent you.

Mike McGinley is the Times Leader Media Group’s major accounts executive. Reach him at [email protected] or 570-704-3945.

Mike McGinley is the Times Leader Media Group’s major accounts executive. Reach him at [email protected] or 570-704-3945.