Who gives great vows in NOLA?
December 18, 2009 11:54 AM   Subscribe

Who should marry us in New Orleans? I read this recent question, but our situation has a few differences.

We're getting hitched in NOLA in April. We live in San Francisco, so we're doing most of the planning long distance, but will be in the city in January for face to face meeetings. First, my fiance and I are Christian (both raised Presbyterian), but we're not major church people. Ideally, we'd like a mild to moderate God presence in the ceremony. Judge KK Norman who was mentioned in the thread sounded great, but we're getting married in a hotel courtyard, and I don't know that judges do ceremonies not in their courtroom. We'll go ULC person if we have to, but it's not our preference as my fiance got ordained as a ULC minister when he was a young punk as a joke, so he has a hard time taking them at all seriously. As a final added complication, without meaning to we planned the ceremony for April 2, which is Good Friday. In retrospect, that was a little boneheaded, but we're too late in the process to change it now. This may make it tricky to get an actual minister.

Still, is there a justice of the peace, traveling judge, or minister you'd recommend?
posted by mostlymartha to Human Relations (8 answers total)
From the linked article on KK Norman:

"And occasionally someone will ask me to do an off-site wedding that night. I've done 'em on the streetcar, the ferry and the levee. I've doneĀ¤'em in a buggy ride going down Bourbon Street and I've done lots of elegant weddings at hotels. You just do 'em wherever.

You could give a call and see if she'll do yours (although that would probably only be possible if the ceremony is in the evening).
posted by phoenixy at 12:09 PM on December 18, 2009

I'm not sure how long the process is, but maybe a respected, close family member could be ordained? My ex claimed he was ordained (not sure if it was ULC or not), and could marry one couple. Maybe someone else knows more about this, but it could be a good option.
posted by too bad you're not me at 12:12 PM on December 18, 2009

I had my brother officiate. You could have a family member or friend do it. This was definitely the right choice for me. It makes for a very personal experience.
posted by xammerboy at 12:13 PM on December 18, 2009

I don't know about Judge Norman, but I know plenty of Judges, my grandfather included, who perform weddings offsite for an honorarium and a cold drink.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 12:33 PM on December 18, 2009

I got ordained to marry my best friends a couple years ago. The laws vary by state. In Florida for example if you are a Notary you can officiate marriages as well. Being ordained is a much easier process.

All I had to do was get ordained, which I did through The Church of Spiritual Humanism, marry 'em up, and fill out the paper work with two witnesses. We gained 100% assurance it worked once the state sent back a copy of their certified and filed marriage license. The longest part of the ordaining is waiting for the paperwork to arrive. If I remember correctly it took about a week or two.

It was great fun, by the way. If there is someone special to you both and it conforms to NO state laws I'd definitely recommend it as a way of adding to your special day.
posted by Gainesvillain at 12:41 PM on December 18, 2009

I was married in my grandmother's house in New Orleans by a judge who was brought in on rather short notice (two weeks, if memory serves). I don't know how much she paid, but I doubt it was much.
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 4:18 PM on December 18, 2009

We were married earlier this year by the Rev. Melanie Morel-Ensminger of the (Unitarian) First Church New Orleans, and I would definitely recommend her. We opted for a pretty mild God presence, but she provided us with a bunch of different sample ceremonies with varying levels of spirituality, including but not limited to Christianity -- and she accommodated our own readings and preferences with no trouble. Plus, I don't think Good Friday's a big deal for Unitarians, so that shouldn't be an issue. I liked her a lot, and she was responsive and did a lovely job officiating at our ceremony.

Congratulations and thanks for coming to New Orleans!
posted by Siobhan at 4:32 PM on December 18, 2009

I got married once next to the Missouri River by a judge. We just had to pay him an extra $25 to go offsite.
posted by VC Drake at 9:33 PM on December 18, 2009

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