Chelsea Clinton weds at exclusive New York estate
(AP) - It was high society inside and highsecurity outside as Chelsea Clinton wed her longtime boyfriend atan elegant estate in a Hudson River village where several prominentguests were spotted beforehand, but the husband-and-wife-to-bestayed out of sight.
The wedding site, a Beaux Arts riverside estate called AstorCourts, was sealed off from the general public. Bill Clinton andHillary Rodham Clinton issued a statement announcing that theirdaughter exchanged vows Saturday evening with investment bankerMarc Mezvinsky, and a few photographs were later released to mediaoutlets.
"Today, we watched with great pride and overwhelming emotion asChelsea and Marc wed in a beautiful ceremony at Astor Courts,surrounded by family and their close friends," the Clintons said."We could not have asked for a more perfect day to celebrate thebeginning of their life together, and we are so happy to welcomeMarc into our family. On behalf of the newlyweds, we want to givespecial thanks to the people of Rhinebeck for welcoming us and toeveryone for their well-wishes on this special day."
Chelsea Clinton, wearing a strapless white gown with a fullskirt and silver beading around the waist and carrying a bouquet ofwhite flowers, was escorted down the aisle by her father. Theformer president and the groom wore dark suits, while the mother ofthe bride wore a fuchsia dress.
The event was the culmination of weeks of secrecy and buildupthat drew onlookers to the small village of Rhinebeck, 90 miles(145 kilometers) north of New York City.
It is estimated that hundreds of guests gathered at the historicestate near the end of a near-perfect summer day of warmtemperatures, blue skies and cottony clouds. The ceremony wasconducted by a rabbi and a reverend as Chelsea Clinton is Methodistand Mezvinsky is Jewish, and included a poem by Leo Marks titled,"The Life That I Have," according to the family.
The road to Astor Courts was blocked off Saturday - neighborsreceived a bottle of wine for their troubles - and the sky abovewas declared a no-fly zone by federal aviation officials. Policeand security guards fanned out around this usually sleepy town.
Consistent with Chelsea Clinton's desire for privacy, the familyhad released no details of the wedding beyond the date. But thescope of the event became apparent when more than a half-dozenbusloads of wedding guests - men in black tie, women in dresses -were transported from a hotel in the village to the riversideceremony as gawkers looked on.
Celebrities spotted in Rhinebeck for the event included actorsTed Danson and Mary Steenburgen; fashion designer Vera Wang;Madeleine Albright, who was secretary of state during BillClinton's second term as president, and Terry McAuliffe, formerDemocratic National Committee chairman. The former president's halfbrother, Roger Clinton, was spotted early Saturday afternoon withhis son Tyler, picking up food at a restaurant.
Reporters, who had been searching for celebrities in vain formost of the day, quickly zeroed in on Danson and Steenburgen,prompting Danson to ask, "Are we the only celebrities in town?"
Celebrity seekers jockeyed with reporters for sidewalk spaceover most of the day too. Donna Vena drove 50 miles (80 kilometers)to Rhinebeck from her home of Mount Kisco, New York, in the hopesof spotting a celebrity.
"Why not?" she asked Saturday morning, a camera slung over hershoulder. "Big story. Maybe see Oprah."
Nearby, two young women passed out slices of pizza with "I do"written in pepperoni.
On Friday, there were sightings of Bill Clinton and his wife, aformer U.S. senator from New York and current secretary of state.
Chelsea Clinton and Mezvinsky were friends as teenagers inWashington, and both attended Stanford University. They now live inNew York, where Mezvinsky works at G3 Capital, a Manhattan hedgefund. Mezvinsky worked previously at Goldman Sachs as an investmentbanker.
Clinton completed her master's degree in public health earlierthis year at the Mailman School of Public Health at ColumbiaUniversity.
Mezvinsky is a son of former U.S. Reps. MarjorieMargolies-Mezvinsky of Pennsylvania and Ed Mezvinsky of Iowa,longtime friends of the Clintons. His parents are divorced.