Guest Blogger:: Joey
Some friends of mine were married in Canada recently and I was dying to know the details (and of course share them with mrster.com readers). These guys are fortunate because one of them has dual US/Canadian citizenship, so planning a legal ceremony fell right into place with Canada’s gay wedding laws. Readers, meet Mike and Dan…
Mike and Dan met in an Arizona bar in 2000 while playing a game of pool. According to both of them, it was “love at first sight.” A self-proclaimed “quiet couple,” they spend much of their time with their dog, close friends and their neighbors. They love to travel and have visited Costa Rica, Hawaii, the Mediterranean, and of course Mike’s homeland of Canada. In 2002 the couple was visting a favorite hot spot and to Dan’s surprise, Mike blurted the big question. Dan agreed immediately. In planning their wedding the couple was on a quest to get married legally in their Arizona surroundings by a favorite local drag queen. However, after a long wait for laws to change at home they proposed the idea of taking the show on the road to Canada where a legal wedding ceremony could be performed. The couple told me that the planning was fairly simple and consisted of an email chain between them and the deputy town clerk in Mike’s hometown. A recent change in the law stated they would no longer need to married by a justice of the peace in any municipality in excess of 5,000.
When applying for the marriage certificate the guys were referred to an appointment with the town clerk where she let them know there was “absolutely no difference between when a man and a woman get married and when both partners are of the same sex.” With her comments and the fact that all the paperwork was gender-neutral it made the whole process very comfortable. The ceremony was in the town council chambers with the Canadian and Provincial flags proudly displayed in the background. It appeared to them that the officiant was more nervous than they were because it was not only her first marriage ceremony to officiate but it happened to be between two men! The officiant let the couple know that the ceremony was kept extremely confidential and staff that was caught discussing it or leaking the information to the press would be terminated. Oh, did I mention this was the FIRST gay wedding in the town?! Dan was pleased about the “secret” wedding as he had some concern about local media catching wind. Following the ceremony was a small reception at a lakeside restaurant where they were joined by family and friends to celebrate the occasion. Concerned about being the talk of the town, they were pleased with the various degrees of positivity they got from family members and the residents of the community. So after 7 years of waiting they were able to have the wedding they wanted, and acceptance to boot.
Lastly, I asked the couple what advice they would have for the mrster.com readers and this is what they said: Plan, but don’t plan too much and just do what you want to on your special day. Don’t worry about what others think, and remember the wedding is for the participants, not for the attendees. There is no reason to base what will be involved in your ceremony on what is done in traditional hetero weddings.
A great story, and some great advice from some great guys!
Until next time… Joey