The legal battle over whether large, indoor wedding receptions can actually resume in New York State resulted in a 175-person wedding reception, scheduled for Saturday, being postponed, after a U.S. Appeals Court judge sided with the state.

Two couples, who were both holding receptions at the Arrowhead Golf Club in Akron, just outside of Buffalo, had sued Governor Andrew Cuomo over his executive order limiting indoor receptions for weddings to 50 people or less. One of their main arguments was that because indoor dining (in all regions outside of New York City) is allowed at 50% of capacity, indoor wedding receptions should be allowed to have 50% capacity as well. U.S. District Court Judge Glenn Suddaby agreed, and allowed the two weddings, a 115-person wedding on August 7th and a 175-person wedding on August 22nd, to proceed.

However, the state appealed, arguing that it's one thing to have numerous small groups of diners, who are just mingling in their own groups and coming and going at different times—and it's a totally different matter to bring in large groups of people at the same time, mingling and celebrating with each other, for many hours together.

In the state's appeal of the lower court's ruling, state Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker expressed more concern for the 175-guest wedding, because, "One hallmark of a super-spreader event is its size. As [the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] stated in June 12th, 2020 guidance, the more people with whom an individual interacts at a gathering and the longer that interaction lasts, the higher the potential risk of becoming infected with COVID-19 and COVID-19 spreading. As a group’s size increases, so does the risk of transmitting the virus to a wider cluster. A large group size also increases the chance that someone present will already have the virus and be contagious, even if entirely asymptomatic. This is the reason that size limits have been imposed on gatherings of all kinds by the Executive Orders."

Earlier this week, Suddaby rejected the state's appeal, but on Friday, U.S. Second District Judge Denny Chin—the judge who sentenced Bernard Madoff to 150 years in prison—granted NY State an injunction on the August 22nd wedding of Pamella Giglia and Joe Durolek. Noting that the couples' lawsuit was filed on July 31st, Chin wrote, "Plaintiffs-Appellees did not seek to challenge the application of the Executive Order limiting gatherings to 50 people until just a few days before the first of the scheduled weddings."

Chad Davenport, a lawyer for Giglia and Durolek, told the Post on Friday, "Our couple obviously is disappointed with today’s decision, and they have decided to postpone their wedding until a final decision from the Second Circuit is issued, possibly as early as next Saturday, August 29, 2020."

On Wednesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio revealed New York City was investigating an "uptick" of COVID-19 cases in Borough Park, many of which were linked to an illicit "large" wedding in Borough Park. And, in Maine, health officials are investigating an outbreak of coronavirus cases that occurred from a 65-person wedding at an inn on August 7th. According to the Boston Globe, "As of Monday, 18 people who attended the event and six others who had close contact with attendees have tested positive for COVID-19, according to the Maine CDC. All 24 of those confirmed cases are Maine residents, officials said."