The Cookie Table -- a Pittsburgh Wedding Tradition
It is the belief of many people in Pittsburgh that you can't have a wedding without cookies. Wedding guests are used to skipping traditional appetizers of vegetables and crab cakes and filling up on cookies while waiting for dinner to begin. "Cookie Table" is actually an entry in Wikipedia.
The must-have cookie table is a tradition reflecting the diverse ethnic communities of steel-mill towns, especially in Western Pennsylvania, who perhaps could not afford a wedding cake. So neighbors, aunts, cousins, grandmothers, and mothers would all bake dozens of cookies. Most [trays] have thousands of cookies and the trays are replenished continuously throughout the night. Boxes or bags are provided so that guests can take cookies home with them.
...We packed up two boxes to take home with us.