Central Park: Everyone’s Neighborhood Park

Last Summer, I had the pleasure of marrying two lovely young people Gail and Jason. Theirs was a quintessential modern day romance—intercontinental and filled with demanding professional obligations. Jason and Gail met while in graduate school at the University of Edinburgh. Their time together in Scotland, affirmed their love for one another, first as friends, then as flat mates, and finally as a romantic couple. Upon graduation, Jason, a native Texan, returned to the United States to attend law school at Mr. Jefferson’s University, the University of Virginia. A marriage proposal last Thanksgiving led to the inevitable question, “Where should such a globe-trotting couple marry?” With friends and family coming from all points in America, as well as Australia, the U.K. and Continental Europe, New York became the “logical” choice for the wedding. What is better than a late summer wedding in Central Park?

I was so honored to lead the ceremony, in part because of my own Scottish ancestry. (I must admit that I was thrilled to learn that there are relatives in the bride’s family that share my surname “Ritchie.”) Our planning was remote—via email and telephone, but I came to feel kinship with these two. The wedding was held in a sweet Gazebo in the southern part of Central Park, a little nest known as the “Cop Cot Gazebo.” Interestingly, this is a Scottish phrase which, translated, means “the little house on the crest of the hill.” Perfect, right? There were touches of Scotland all around—from the kilts worn by several members of the wedding party to the Scottish flag on which the wedding cake was lovingly placed. However, I am confident that our couple and their friends and family members felt very much at home in the Big Apple.

As my celebrancy practice continues to bloom, I anticipate working with many more couples who make New York their wedding destination. As I did with Jason and Gail, I stand ready to help with all aspects of the wedding preparations including venue selection, assistance with music, flowers and other wedding elements, travel arrangements, and the challenges of negotiating a wedding license at the New York City Clerk’s office. So Congratulations Gail and Jason! You were a complete joy to work with.

Photograph courtesy of Jeffrey Mosier Photography.