PAUL ANKA

Date: August 14, 1993
Number of Guests: 30
The bride wore: strapless silk, no stockings
Father's emotional state: misty

He looked cool and perfectly collected as he greeted guests on that sweltering afternoon at St. Paul's Chapel. A singer-songwriter with 32 Top 40 hits to his credit, he knows how to put on a show. But underneath, Anka, 52, was crumbling. As he prepared to give away Alexandra, 27, the eldest of his five daughters, to Swiss-German bicycle racer Jörg Muller, 32, Anka says, "I was so choked up, I had to sit down and reflect."

It's no wonder. Anka and Anne, his wife of 30 years, have built their lives around their children (the others: Amanda, Alicia, Anthea and Amelia). And to Anka, Alexandra has always been A-l. "She's a lot like me," he says. "Stubborn, tough, a perfectionist." Says Alexandra: "He's always treated me like an older son, telling me that I'll have to learn the business and take care of everybody." (A law clerk in Monte Carlo, Monaco, she hopes to practice entertainment and sports law).

Anka likes Jörg—who looked him right in the eye when they met four days before the ceremony. Like most dads, Anka was spared the traumas of planning the wedding and reception, which took place at a hotel overlooking the Mediterranean. "All I did," Anka admits, "was pay the damn bill."

He's not losing his daughter, he knows, and yet.... "He keeps asking me," says Alexandra, " 'Do you think Jörg would like to open a business in the States?' "

CHAD EVERETT

Date: May 14, 1994
Number of Guests: 150
The bride wore: off-the-shoulder Bianci gown
Father's emotional state: obsessive

Just before Dad and daughter headed down the aisle at All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena, Calif., Shannon Everett, 22, nearly sidelined her escort. "She whispered to me, 'I want you to know that when you are a grandpa, a great-grandpa and a great-great-grandpa, I'll still be your little girl,' " remembers Everett, 57. "Well, I chewed a hole on the inside of my cheek trying to keep my stuff together after that. I knew if I went, it would be a weep-a-thon."

It wasn't, of course. The onetime star of TV's Medical Center had vowed long ago not to be left out of the wedding plans like beleaguered Stanley Banks in Father of the Bride. He had played landscaper, decorator and organizer for months, transforming the L.A. home he shares with Shannon's mom, Shelby, and he wasn't about to blow the moment. Shannon, the younger of Everett's daughters and an aspiring actress, wed personal trainer and aspiring actor Gregory Joujon-Roche, 27 (whom her dad finds "affable, fun-loving and fair"), without embarrassing incident. And when it was all over, as Everett (who will star in McKenna, on ABC in the fall) sat Banks-like, alone in his living room, he spotted his daughter's wedding bouquet. "I didn't know if it was left there by design or if it was a wonderful gift of carelessness," he says. "But when I picked it up, her words came back to me." What more could Stanley Banks—or Chad Everett—ask?

MAURY POVICH

Date: May 30, 1994
Number of Guests: 275
The bride wore: ecru satin and lace
Father's emotional state: sad

When he first heard that his younger daughter Amy had a new beau, talk show host Povich figured it was just a current affair. "He was never interested in my boyfriends," says Amy, 27, an actress. "No one was good enough for my sister Susan and me."

A little information about David Agus, 29, changed that. "I said to Amy, 'He's a doctor? You mean a doctor?' " says Povich, 55. "It's every parent's dream!" And not one he had counted on Amy to fulfill. "She was a rather rebellious child," says Povich, who was divorced from Amy's mother, Phyllis Minkoff, in 1977. "And I dealt with her."

Once again it was Dad dealing with Amy during those fretful hours before the big event, a kosher wedding long on ritual and even longer on song (including a rendition of "Smack Dab in the Middle" by Povich and wife Connie Chung). "Amy said, 'I have doubts,' " says Povich, who played host at his and Chung's New Jersey home. "I said, 'I had doubts when I married Connie. You just have to build on them. Over time, they will grow smaller.' "

It was what Amy needed to hear. "Walking down the aisle with Dad," she says, "felt tender and intimate. We were...almost serene."

MICHAEL TUCKER

Date: July 24, 1993
Number of Guests: 150
The bride wore: beaded lace and tulle
Father's emotional state: stoic

Tucker doesn't want to get into specifics here, but the L.A. Law star admits that his only daughter, Alison, 24, "has had boyfriends who, uh, gave us pause."

Applause rather than pause was the reaction of Tucker, 50, and his wife, Jill Eikenberry (Alison's stepmom), to Pete Looney, 23, a UCLA grad student. Of course, Tucker always had confidence that Alison, 24, an actress who has appeared on L.A. Law, would ultimately come through. "This is a very grown-up lady," he says. "She knows what she's doing."

Tucker wasn't sure that he did last summer, when he walked Alison down the aisle at a chateau in Malibu. "It hit me like a ton of bricks," he says. Even so, "Dad was the coolest," says Alison. "I thought he was going to cry so much we'd have to carry him—he even cries at card tricks. But he was a rock."

Tucker stayed solid at the reception. "Let each other grow," he toasted the couple. "And Pete, take care of my little girl. I've found that she's always worth the trouble."