10,000 planned to attend New York wedding shut down over COVID concerns, officials say

Dawson White
·2 min read

A wedding that could draw more than 10,000 attendees will not move forward after officials issued a ban to a New York synagogue.

The wedding was scheduled for Oct. 19 in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Williamsburg, ABC News reported.

Investigators said more than 10,000 guests were planning to attend, Elizabeth Garvey, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s special counsel, said during a Saturday news briefing.

The grandchild of Zalman Teitlebaum, a notable rabbi, was set to be wed on Monday, according to fliers obtained by WCBS, the station reported. Events were planned at two locations in Williamsburg.

State officials learned of the wedding after the Rockland County Sheriff’s Office warned people not to attend an event in obvious violation of gathering limits, WNBC reported.

State officials served the Hasidic synagogue an order on Friday banning mass gatherings at the location, according to the outlet.

Health commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker personally issued the Section 16 order — of which violators can face daily fines of up to $10,000 — to Congregation Yetev Lev D’Satmar for fear the state’s typical course of action wouldn’t move quickly enough to prevent the event, The New York TImes reported.

Officials said they obtained a wedding invitation last week and that attendees would be traveling to Williamsburg from “hot spots” all over the state, according to the Times.

“You can get married; you just can’t have 1,000 people at your wedding. You get the same result at the end of the day,” Cuomo said in his Saturday news briefing.

Garvey said the order does allow recipients to request a hearing with the health commissioner, adding that officials expect one to be requested.

In a statement, synagogue leaders said they’d considered COVID-19 restrictions while planning the event, WNBC reported. Organizers said “outside guests will no longer be permitted to attend and the event will be attended by close family only,” according to the outlet.

“It’s sad that no one verified our plans before attacking us,” Chaim Jacobowitz, the congregation’s secretary, said in statement, the Times reported.