Countless memories have been made within these walls over the past 91 years. Once in awhile, we are fortunate enough to have past guests and their families reach out to us to share memories, photos and their stories. There is nothing like hearing about precious memories that were made here. It is even more special when photos are shared!
Today we are thrilled to share the wedding story and photos of Mr. & Mrs. Stiner, who celebrated their wedding at the Ambassador Hotel in 1947. Their reception took place in what is now the Embassy Room. Mrs. Stiner and her family have generously shared their love & life story, photos, the wedding invitation and newspaper clippings with us!
Janet Young, the daughter of Bernice and John Stiner, wrote a lovely story of how her parents met, fell in love and married - including details about their wedding that took place here at the Ambassador! She and her mother, now 96 years old, reminisced and put together the following to share with our guests. Additionally, please view the photos they so generously have allowed us to share below the story they wrote. Some of the photos depict memories that are specifically described!
Bernice Treptow and John Stiner met in Milwaukee, Wisconsin during Summerfest in 1946, when John, who was in the U.S. Navy, was in town to give tours to interested visitors in the Navy communications mobile unit. They became engaged in the Fall of 1947, knowing that they wanted to get married in December 1947 prior to John having to report back for duty in Florida in January 1948.
Having been born and raised in Milwaukee, Bernice wanted to be married in her favorite city surrounded by her family and close friends. On a snowy day on December 27, 1947, Bernice Treptow and John Stiner were joined in marriage at the Pentecost Lutheran Church (located on N. 53rd and W. Burleigh Streets) in the company of approximately 120 guests. Since the ceremony occurred two days after Christmas, the church still had a beautifully decorated Christmas Tree near the altar. In further celebration of the Christmas season, the bride wore a gorgeous, floor-length white satin gown and carried a prayer book and bouquet of white gardenias, while the bridesmaids wore hunter green moire taffeta gowns and carried bouquets of red poinsettias. The groom and his groomsmen wore formal black suits and white shirts.
Immediately following the wedding ceremony, a dinner was held for the wedding party at the Boulevard Inn at Steuben Square. The celebration of John and Bernice Stiner's marriage continued at the Ambassador Hotel (which was the most beautiful hotel in town) with a reception attended by their family and friends in the Embassy Room. Guests enjoyed drinks and a delicious, white, five-layer wedding cake that was decorated with white poinsettias and a cake topper resembling the newly married couple.
In the festive Embassy Room, the Ray Steward Band entertained the couple and their guests with lively 1940s era dance music. At one point during the reception, the drummer of the band encouraged Bernice and her youngest brother, Ron Treptow, to dance together. Since Ron(nie) was only 9 years old at the time, he did not yet know how to dance. Bernice encouraged her beloved little brother to join her by saying, "You can do it. Just look at my feet and follow along." Ronnie thought he could indeed do it, until he realized he had a slight problem due to Bernice's floor-length wedding gown and replied, "But I can't see your feet!" Ultimately, that really didn't matter as Ronnie served as a wonderful dance partner for his big "sis"; and that poignant moment proved to be among the most memorable of the evening for everyone in attendance. After dancing with his sister, Ronnie spent the remainder of the night riding up and down the gorgeous golden elevators in the hotel with Ray (the groom's younger brother). It was a fun and memorable experience for both young boys, especially because Ray had never before been in an elevator.
After enjoying their fairy-tale like wedding reception, John and Bernice departed at approximately 10:00 p.m. to begin their honeymoon; however, their family and friends were having such a wonderful time that they continued partying long into the night by dancing and drinking together in the beautiful Embassy Room in celebration of the newly married couple.
Upon leaving their wedding reception, John and Bernice had only five days to get to Key West, Florida, to ensure that John could report on time for his new naval assignment. As a result of this short time-line, the new couple began their journey that night by automobile. After arriving in Key West, they enjoyed residing there until John was shipped out to continue his duty to protect the Eastern seaboard of the U.S.A. At the conclusion of John's six years of service in the U.S. Navy, John and Bernice eventually moved to California, where John worked as an intermediate school teacher for 30 years and Bernice worked as an elementary school librarian, all while raising two daughters, Peggy and Janet. John and Bernice enjoyed 64 years of marriage before John passed in 2012 at the age of 89. At the age of 96, beautiful Bernice still lives in California near her daughters.
The spectacularly renovated Ambassador Hotel brings back extremely fond memories for Bernice Stiner and her family members, as it captures the grandeur and elegance of the original hotel - so beloved by all who experienced it "back in the day" and all who stay, dine, and celebrate there today. On behalf of the Stiner and Treptow family, thank you Ambassador Hotel for continuing to fill our hearts with joy!
We wish to extent a heartfelt "Thank You" to Bernice Stiner, Janet Young and Ron Treptow for facilitating the delivery of the photos and this sweet story. We truly appreciate your time, effort and willingness to share. We are thrilled to be able to share this with our guests and to preserve your story in our archives.