1997 was also MY family's biannual reunion, so this event was
of the whole thing. I'm the oldest of seven and every 2 years, one of
is in charge of a reunion and we get together with our parents, in a
city. We've done Disneyland, Lake Tahoe, Chicago, Santa Fe, and in
Las Vegas. (In 1999, Steamboat Springs; in 2001, Lake Severn, Ontario;
and in 2003, Colorado Springs.)
OK, on to the event!
Before the actual vow renewal, I had a costume party for all 30 of
15 kids, 15 adults. Everyone looked great in their costumes! We
4 different types of chocolate cake, and drank a special wine.
wine was a Berringer bottle we'd gotten on our honeymoon in Napa
in 1987, and luckily it stood the test of time!
Tony was attired in full Star Trek uniform, as "Worf", complete with
Klingon forehead and wig. He does fabulous voice impressions, and he
completely in character throughout the whole ceremony, doing a
rendition of Worf.
I wore a purple gown with cape, and collar, Egyptian-inspired. I was
hoping to be a Vulcan, but my daughter somehow misplaced BOTH sets of
Vulcan ears! I made my own costume, using gold lame' with little craft
jewels to simulate a gold collar. My first major sewing project in a
Amanda, our then 9-year-old daughter, wore a Star fleet jumpsuit and
as a junior Lt. Jadzia Dax from Deep Space Nine. Armand, our then
7-year-old son, went as Luke Skywalker from Star Wars.
My 2 sisters and parents came along (my 4 brothers chickened
Also, a half dozen members of the local Vegas Star Trek club showed up
in full dress uniform. As we arrived at the Chapel, we ran
into an Elvis. A couple was dressed as Elvis and Priscilla, and
was renewing their 25th wedding anniversary vows, so we weren't the
The inside of the chapel was tasteful--photos of happy couples,
stained glass windows. We met the minister, the Reverend Norm Jones,
Elvis. He is of the Elvis-Vegas-era vintage, the "King" after he
discovered carbohydrates. He had on a black jumpsuit with tons of
Before we got started, they asked for our rings. Somehow it escaped
my mind that wedding vow renewals involve exchanging rings. I had major
PMS and it was 115 degrees and I could not get the rings off. Tried
my finger in ice water, to no avail.
Tony's ring came off for the first time in a decade and it is now an
oval! Armand was entrusted with the ring; during the ceremony he
dropped it and played with it, but didn't lose it.
Our guests were seated, and then kaboom!, we walked in as Elvis
us to the "Hawaiian Wedding Song" on a huge microphone.
At this point I lost it completely, as I looked at my boogying
who decided to sing backup! I had tears streaming down my face.
We stopped at the front of the chapel and Elvis had us do the unity
candle thing. He said some very nice words, tasteful and
about marriage, lovers and friends. He intermixed some Star Trek
all impromptu, which I thought was very nice.
We then renewed our vows, my husband still in character, and me
and crying. The vows were a mixture of various Elvis songs.
Baby. I promise to be your hunka
hunka burnin' love for all time, and will never treat you moody blue or
have suspicious minds."
After his words of wisdom, Elvis came down from behind the pulpit,
whipped out a tacky yellow shiny scarf, and gave it to Tony. Tony
it on his forehead, which made me laugh even harder. He then was
instructed to put it around my neck. I made some comment about
kinky; later Tony tells me this was some kind of sweaty
Elvis-towel trademark! When done, Elvis burst into a rousing chorus of
"Viva Las Vegas." When
we got to the back of the chapel, Elvis linked arms with us and we
our way back to the front. All the while Elvis was singing. Every
time he got to the chorus of Viva Las Vegas, he'd pass the microphone
someone in the audience to belt out the words. Our kids
dancing throughout this. My dad was videotaping and my mom was...
Apparently we were sufficiently unique and a first time experience
for Elvis, because he asked to take special photos of us for his wall
Elvis / Reverend Norm Jones in Action!