Two COMPLETELY Opposite Weddings!

Michigan Wedding Officiant ~ Standard Wedding CeremonyWell the 4th of July weekend was eventful, to say the least. My Dad did a beautiful wedding, for Jerome and Maria, at the Henderson Castle in Kalamazoo. It was small, intimate and very elegant!! The couple honored their Mother’s and had a special prayer read by the Jerome’s brother in memory of the Maria’s former Professor and friend. I can’t wait to see the pictures!! Dad attended the reception at the Castle and had nothing but good things to say about the place. This is one I wished I had been able to do, but there are many things I can pull off – however, being a man isn’t one of them! And that’s what the couple wanted, a man to perform the ceremony – which is fine with me, it saved me the drive 1.5 hour drive to KZoo but after the wedding I had – I wished I had been anywhere but where I was…

I won’t use names or specifics in order to protect the wedded but I have to tell you, the wedding I did that weekend was almost comical! I should have had a clue when nearly 20 people arrived for the rehearsal, all late, and not one was the bride or groom! They did finally appear and we did finally get the “official rehearsal” on track but the woman who runs the facility should have just stayed out of it! It was my first time doing a ceremony there so I didn’t really know what to expect from her but honestly she just made it worse! You wedding coordinators just need to sit back and let us run our own rehearsals, pay attention to what we are telling the bridal parties to do so you can help line everyone up on the big day, other than that – you should be seen and not heard! Well that was just the start of it; when I arrived on wedding day 30 minutes prior to the ceremony the bride was just getting her make-up on and I was informed that they didn’t have the rings, the flowers or the marriage license – oh and the groom wasn’t there either. Hmmmm…good thing it was a holiday and I had nothing better to do than stand around in 90 degree sweltering 3:00pm sun in a black suit (LOL!)

So finally everything arrives and the photographer starts taking all the group pictures prior to the ceremony…again, it’s only a holiday – I only have two kids and a husband waiting for me at home – take your time! Did I mention the part where the couple (bride) insisted on lighting a unity candle, outdoors by a pond with a fountain and no hurricane glasses to go over any of them? Haven’t we talked about this before – no unity candles outside ladies! Anyway, so yes candles outside – they told me at the rehearsal that they would get the glass covers so we planned to have the Mom’s light the candles at the beginning (as per tradition) but had to change that right before the ceremony – which totally confused the two “Mom’s”, so they were just seated and were supposed to be the “examples” of when to stand and when to sit but they got that all wrong too. Then we had to change the way the runner was deployed because it was 200’ and the aisle was 40’…

Lesson #2 – no cheap runners outside, especially without stakes to tack it down – can you say kite? And ladies, if you insist on using those plastic runners on a roll you MUST cut the rope that comes with it and insert a longer one – unless the people deploying it are 3’ tall the will have to bend over to unroll it, which looks goofy and is very uncomfortable for them. AND if you are doing this outdoors you must bring something to stake it down with – the wind blows you know! I just don’t want to see another bride’s maid taking out her hairpins to stake down the ends and then guests diving to the aisle the hold the stupid thing down – we had to move the potted plants into the aisle just to hold it down so besides it hiding the stepping stones (which were awkwardly placed anyway) from the bride’s site she now had a bevy of potted plants to navigate around…she didn’t look happy about it either.

So the actually ceremony went off without a hitch…all except the part when they went to light the unity candle…as I expected it didn’t work – they even had the big fireplace lighters and nothing, it was lit as long as one of them held a lighter to it but in the end they finally gave up. I finished up the ceremony and the couple was a bout to depart but once again the Mom’s totally missed their cues and the shower of bubbles and the standing crowds were, well – a little scraggly. It just seemed like everything that could go wrong did go wrong, including me smashing my foot while moving a podium on heels over grass because the “site person” suggested a different location that would make for better pictures, which it didn’t because the lined it up all wrong…it’s always nice to see a parking lot full of cars behind your wedding photo’s…and my foot still hurts! The lesson for me is there is only so much I can do for you as a wedding Officiant or a wedding planner, if you’re not going to listen to me there isn’t much I can do for you but carry on! So Brides’; a word of sage advice; listen to the trained professionals that you’ve hired, they are only trying to help you have the very best on your special day and remember to old adage…to many cooks in the kitchen…!

Peace & Love to you all!
Rev. Hoot

What do you think?