Cakes and Tying the Knot

By on 4 June, 2012 in Karren Pell with 0 Comments

Most folklorists maintain that June is the favorite month for weddings because the month is named for Juno, the Roman goddess of marriage and the patron of wives. Anyone with even a small knowledge of mythology knows that Juno had to endure a lot of, well, let’s be polite and say aggravation from her husband, Zeus, and she certainly deserves having a month named for her.

There’s no evidence that Juno was especially interested in cakes, but having pastry at a wedding has been traditional for many hundreds of years. In the Middle Ages, the custom was to stack sweet rolls high so that the couple could attempt to kiss over the top of the pile for good luck. This custom grew into the tiered wedding cake. I love wedding cake. We are lucky to have three midtown bakeries that create amazing wedding cakes.

The House of Bread, Paul Williams’ new restaurant and catering service at 317 North Hull St (Old Alabama Town), shows off some fabulous wedding cakes on their Facebook page. Modern and traditional designs for both groom and bride cakes promise to “make your event a memory to last a lifetime.” Liger’s Bakery on McGehee Street is a long-time favorite. Liger’s made my wedding cake (Heath bar inside — yum) and I loved it so much I had them make another for our tenth wedding anniversary. Their website features photos of amazing cakes and the bakers declare, “While baking is our passion, helping you create the perfect cake for your event is our love.” Another favorite baker for those in the know: McKinney Cakes. Featured in the May issue of Prime Magazine, Peggy McKinney tells how she came to be known as “the cake lady.” Her Facebook page shows photos of absolutely fabulous cakes, including amazing groom and bride cakes. I was excited to learn we had two connections. First, she lives in my neighborhood, Capitol Heights. I had to use a lot of willpower when reading about her strawberry and peanut butter-chocolate cakes not to run over and get a sample. Our second connection is her son, Clay, who sometimes, when I am lucky, plays in the Old Alabama Town Revue.

Now that bite of information (strawberry?) brings me nicely to the other bite (of peanut butter-chocolate?) of information. The Old Alabama Town Revue is coming right up on Thursday night, on June 7 at 7 p.m. at the Old Church in Old Alabama Town. I have decided to take the summer off from performing to write, so the OAT Revue will not run again until October. Tim Henderson, Greg Thornton, Toni Wood-Meyer and yours truly will render songs and readings for a romantic and eclectic perspective on a wedding theme called “Tying the knot or not.” The term “tying the knot,” I learned from the website “The Nuptial Knot,” has an ancient and multicultural history related to weddings. Remains of ancient Celtic ritual are visible today in the clasping of the groom and bride’s hands and the laying of a cord or cloth around them to symbolize both their unity and their unity with God. Well, we are not tied to featuring anything quite so serious, but we are bound to sing some love songs and, shall we just say, other options.

So come join us. We will have a fun time and it will be a few months before we do it again. Maybe I’ll even have a cake.

Karren Pell is a writer, teacher, and performer who lives with her husband, Tim Henderson, and an assortment of cats and dogs in Capitol Heights. She is the author of three books. Her musical compositions range from commercial songs to theatrical works, with five musical adaptations to her credit.

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