The worst-kept secret in the political world is expected to culminate Saturday as Chelsea Clinton marries Marc Mezvinsky at a posh venue in Rhinebeck, New York.
The entire town has been sworn to secrecy, but many storefront windows bear signs saying “Congratulations Marc & Chelsea” and similar messages.
“You could make a case that this is the most significant thing to happen in Rhinebeck since Washington’s army drove the British out of Rhinebeck back in the 1700s,” said Jim Langon, editor of the Hudson Valley News newspaper, who was the first to report that the wedding would take place there.
The parents of the bride, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and President Clinton, were seen arriving at a formal dinner at the Beekman Arms Inn in Rhinebeck on Friday night.
Also attending were former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, presidential adviser Vernon Jordan and numerous young couples presumed to be friends of the bride and groom.
“This is the wedding of the century,” wedding planner Tatiana Byron said.
The road to Astor Courts, the 50-acre estate where the wedding was expected to take place Saturday evening, was closed, as was the airspace over the town. Local law enforcement refused to confirm the wedding was taking place but did acknowledge working closely with the Secret Service in recent days.
President Obama will not attend, press secretary Robert Gibbs said Monday.
Some wedding planners have guessed that the cost of the celebration could run to seven or even eight figures, but a longtime Clinton family friend said the cost would be less than $1 million.
It’s not known whom Chelsea Clinton, 30, chose to design her gown or what it looks like, but she was spotted by Women’s Wear Daily outside the Vera Wang showroom in New York earlier this week.
Mezvinsky, a 32-year-old investment banker, is the son of former U.S. Reps. Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky of Pennsylvania and Ed Mezvinsky of Iowa.
When Bill Clinton was seen in Rhinebeck earlier this week, someone asked him if his daughter was going to look beautiful on Saturday.
“She looks beautiful every day to me,” the beaming father said.
Earlier in July, Hillary Clinton told Polish media that she was enjoying taking part in her daughter’s wedding planning.
“It’s a very happy time for my family,” she said. “It truly is the most important thing in my life right now.”