Five days before couple's wedding, fire temporarily closes Shadow Lake

Fire spreads to the roof of the clubhouse at Shadow Lake. It will re-open next week but not in time for a wedding scheduled there on Saturday. (WHAM photo)

Penfield, N.Y. (WHAM) - One year ago on September 23, Krista Pilla said yes.

The wedding planning began in earnest.

"We're so 'Type A' that we kind of got everything done the first month," Pilla said. "We've kind of been twiddling our thumbs."

On Monday, five days before the wedding, a phone call would change everything. A friend who lives down the road from Shadow Lake Golf and Country Club called to tell Pilla the place was on fire. Employees said it likely started in the kitchen and spread to the roof.

It will likely re-open next week in time for the dozens of weddings and holiday parties already booked - with one exception.

"Immediately I was just crying," Pilla said. "You're not prepared for that on the Monday of your wedding week. It was just shocking."

Before even knowing the extent of the damage, Pilla and her fiance Derek Pino started scouting for a back-up site. Friends jumped in.

"A lot of people were putting in calls for us," Pino said. "We were getting calls back from venues we hadn't called yet."

With four days to the wedding, they are starting over with the help of their wedding planner at Shadow Lake. "Their help has been second to none and is making a very emotional time for us manageable," said Pino.

The couple soon had some surprising news: Plenty of locations were available and ready to make a sit-down meal for 134 people happen - even duplicating the menu choices.

"We're lucky we chose late in the season and there are amazing choices that people probably wait years to have their weddings at these venues," Pilla said.

A bad situation appeared to bring out the best among competitors in the wedding trade.

"It means everything on such an important day," Pino said. "She's already put so much of her heart and soul into it, so to know it's going to be okay means everything to us."

The couple chose Cobblestone Creek Country Club in Victor. Now begins another series of calls: to alert their guests of the change.

Their first test as a married couple came even before the 'I do's' have been said.

"The entire time we've had fun and now we're feeling like we're at ground zero and square one and we're still having fun," Pino said.

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