Sunday, 25 September 2016

Chris and Jason's DIY Wedding - Day 1

I'm in Toronto for Chris and Jason's wedding. Chris calls it a DIY wedding both to keep the costs down and because they wanted a wedding in which their "community" (family and friends) were truly involved.
Friday was Day 1.
Early morning from my hotel room (Intercontinental). Dreary and rain in the forecast.
From Chris and Jason's room. Even Chris' favorite view was obscured.
I went to Vistek and picked up the sound equipment, had lunch with Chris and Jason and got ready.
In the hotel lobby before Steph and Dave, the official photographers, arrived
 I met up with Laura and drove to City Hall where we were all to meet in Nathan Phillips Square. The rain had stopped and although rather cool, it held off for the rest of our day.

The bridesmaids, Sarah, Fiona and Heather, looking bright and cheerful in spite of their early morning start. The bouquets were made from paper (during a "brides attendants sweat shop" at the cottage) to go with the literary theme for the wedding.
Didn't take long for the girls to start having some fun
or Mark
or for Chris to take off those pretty shoes.
Soon we were into the "herding cats" part of the day for the different photo groupings. The bridal party.
Jason's family
Christine's extended family.
Etc, etc, with much chasing of children and trying to get them to face the camera.
Mike and Avery (who was more interested in the fountain and the gulls than the wedding). I don't think he even saw the ring he was supposed to be bearing.

Then it was into city hall and more photos on the curving staircase.

We all piled into the elevators and created quite a noisy crowd, waiting  in the wedding lobby area for our turn.
My pictures of this are a little sparse as I was trying to keep Avery occupied at the time.
There were too many of us
for the available chairs.
After the signing of the paperwork they were officially married, but not according to Chris, as the ceremony in front of all her family and friends, the next day, was what really counted for her.
The one person missing from her entourage was Teri. She had her son, Rory, yesterday. Chris considered that a good excuse for missing her wedding.
Next we all went down to the waterfront and took water taxis, with our loads of cargo, across the harbour to Algonquin Island.
This is where the DIY kicked in. We had food, drinks, decorations, sound system and activity materials all to set up

at the clubhouse on Algonquin Island.

This would be the site for the ceremony the next day.
There were about 40 of us there to set up tables, drape them with pashminas
and pinwheels.
Some tables were set up for card games, the activity centre, the colouring centre, the various pot luck buffets and the favours table. The bar had to be stocked and the kitchen set up. Decorations had to be hung. It was an amazing and efficient work crew.

It was difficult, though, to tear ourselves away from the beautiful view of the Toronto skyline and the evening sky.
Simon and Fiona. I suspect they were watching sailboats.
Before the rehearsal could start, Dan and Simon set up the sound equipment (very handy being related to a stage manager) and the aisle had to be created from stones (some contributed by guests)
In the gathering dusk the officiants (Mike, Aimee, Mark and Meghan) performed their script (with a little ad-libing)
as the wedding party

spectators (Maya) and
wildlife, looked on.
We had to run to catch the ferry from Wards Island but were treated to a view of the skyline at night.
 From the ferry dock we walked, as a group, to 18 Yonge St, where we had the rehearsal dinner in the party room. Mum, Dad and Laura were there already as well as the rehearsal dinner set up team. It was a lovely room, good food and drink, and at each step in this DIY wedding, Chris and Jason's "community" were getting to know each other through working and socializing together.

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