Wedding party puts Delaware State Fair in spotlight

From left, at the Delaware State Fair in Harrington last Saturday are groomsmen Eli Manning, Eric Carter, Tom Bartoski, groom Brian Hendricks, groomsman Tim Pennington, Hoong Chow, James Henderson and Rich Pisan. (Delaware State News photos/Marc Clery)

From left, at the Delaware State Fair in Harrington last Saturday are groomsmen Eli Manning, Eric Carter, Tom Bartoski, groom Brian Hendricks, groomsman Tim Pennington, Hoong Chow, James Henderson and Rich Pisan. (Delaware State News photos/Marc Clery)

Bride and groom Toni Samonte and Brian Hendricks, center, are pictured with their wedding party at the Ferris wheel on the Delaware State Fairgrounds July 23.

Bride and groom Toni Samonte and Brian Hendricks, center, are pictured with their wedding party at the Ferris wheel on the Delaware State Fairgrounds July 23.

HARRINGTON — No, they weren’t the next entertainment act at the nearby Plaza area.

The eight men wearing identical tan shoes, chiffon, white and light blue outfits, were not slated to perform at the M&T Bank Grandstand before hundreds or thousands adoring fans either.

During a blistering hot afternoon July 23 at the Delaware State Fair, bow-tie adorned husband-to-be Brian Hendricks and his seven tie-wearing groomsmen cooled themselves inside the air-conditioned Centre building, chugging water while anticipating the night ahead.

The future Mr. and Mrs. Hendricks planned photos sessions at the M&T Bank Grandstand, Taylor & Messick farm equipment display, Midway Slots and Casino, and Quillen Arena last weekend.

The wedding was scheduled for Asbury United Methodist Church, followed by a reception at the Harrington Fire Company.

Noting his roots and “being born and raised in Harrington,” Mr. Hendricks had to make the fair a part of his wedding day.

“Growing up as a resident of Harrington it was pretty much required that you made a trip to the state fair at some point every year,” he said. “That’s just the way it was and I wasn’t going to end that tradition.”

With that upbringing, Mr. Hendricks and bride-to-be Toni Samonte of Smyrna were pre-ordained to make the fairgrounds a significant part of an unforgettable experience.

The couple’s first date unfolded at the Midway Slots and Casino on the fairgrounds, and Mr. Hendricks proposed during the Delaware Junction country music festival nearby.

Mr. Hendricks was joined by groomsmen Eric Carter, Tom Bartoski, Tim Pennington, Hoong Chow, James Henderson, Rich Pisan; another reported his name as Eli Manning, not to be confused with the quarterback of New York Giants fame.

Reach staff writer Craig Anderson at canderson@newszap.com

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