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T w i n   C i t i e s   W e d d i n g

about your wedding

bridesmaid kit



cake toppers






gender neutral



green wedding

groomsman kit



limo & livery

- ceremony | reception

marriage equality

- ceremony | reception












uniquely you

venues for grandiose


web resources

wedding fair

This is a huge resource of Twin Cities Wedding information to help your wedding to meet all your hopes and dreams!

The first rule about the new relationship is to throw out the rulebook. It's time to start new traditions, not spend a lot of money doing things just because everyone else does them.

Some of the subjects in the index on the left are important; some aren't. The most important part is the wedding couple. Make sure you love each other and can grow together.

You may hear statistics about the costs of weddings or that you should have planned certain things years ago. You will hear lots of things. But after the proposal and the acceptance, the next thing the couple should discuss is what sort of wedding you would like. Do you want a big wedding with everyone you have ever met... all your co-workers, relatives, friends, and previous significant others? Do you want an intimate wedding? Or do you want an inbetween mix?

Size matters. If there are only six people in attendance, you don't have to worry about programs or catering. And if you're renting the Metrodome, you'll need to pay for security and traffic control.  Larger weddings need more advanced planning, are more expensive, and need more production staff. Most of the following information will assume a medium sized wedding.


Bridesmaid Kit

40 Emergency Bridesmaid Supplies* - AA batteries, antacid (Tums), bandages (or clear liquid band-aids), bobby pins, brush, camera, cell phone (mobile phone), chalk (stain disguiser), clear nail polish (for nylon runs), clear tape (quick hemming, double-sided), comb, earring backs, emery board (smooth chewed nails), extension cord, eye drops, facial oil pads, flashlight, floss, hair spray, hand wipes, krazy glue, lint brush, mints, mirror, moleskin (dancing blisters), nail clipper, nail polish remover, nylons, pen & paper, razor, safety pins, sandals (flip-flops), scissors, sewing kit & thread (matches dress colors), smelling salts, stain remover, static guard, straws (avoid lipstick smears), tampons & pads, tissues, toothbrush & paste, tweezers, & a watch.
* also known as the Maid of Honor kit
bridesmaid kit
Maid of Honor Kit - aspirin, emery board, mints, nail polish remover, safety pins, sewing kit...
Monogrammed Decorations
Red Wine Stain Remover - a little club soda will get that out



A standard wedding and reception in the Twin Cities with 150 guests can cost $20,000.  Half of that will be the cost of the reception (catering and beverages are the most expensive). Twenty percent is flowers and photography. The wedding dress, grooms tuxedo, and accessories are another ten percent. Music is eight percent. And fees, printing, and transportation is the balance.

The only set fee is the Minnesota Marriage License which is $110, but it's $40 if you show that you've taken a premarital class.

Budget - Ceremony   
ceremony location fee
ceremony officiant fee
marriage license
musicians fees
aisle runner

Budget - Reception  
reception location fee
catering - food
musicians fees
sound system rental
rental furniture & decor

Budget - Attire   
wedding dress
headpiece or veil
bride's shoes
groom's tuxedo
groom's shoes
dress preservatives

Budget - Flowers   
bride's bouquet
maid-of-honor bouquet
bridesmaid bouquet
corsages & 
ceremony flowers
reception flowers
flower-girl basket

Budget - Photography 
videographer (& tripod)
cheap cameras

Budget - Stationery 
thank yous
The average U.S. engagement ring was $6,348 in 2008 and was graphan average of $4,435 in 2006, and an increase of 30% in just two years. And 58% of brides expected to use credit cards to help pay for their weddings, according to a survey.

The average cost of the wedding dress was $1,075 in 2008.

The average cost of the wedding was $28,082 in 2008.



When I was a kid, I knew a cake sculptor. She was very good and very worried about cake disasters whenever a kid was around. So I was fed cake rubble, the unwanted cake carvings, given any information I needed and was whisked on my way.

In the fleeting moments with the Michelangelo of cake carvers, I learned a thing or two about cakes. The first rule is that anything is possible. If you want a life-sized replica of yourself in cake, you can do that.  The second rule is that the further out on a limb you go, the more likely you will fall.

To make the most delicious cakes, start with the highest quality (most fattening) ingredients.  And the rest of what I learned was sworn to icing

 cakeThe cake sculptor aside, wedding cakes are usually fake. Only one layer is for the ceremonial cake cutting. The rest is plastic or styrofoam. The guests are served from sheet cakes. Guests at larger weddings may not get a good look at the (fake) cake. But for smaller weddings, check out creative cake toppers --

Cake Toppers: Baseball Couple
Beach Couple 1
Beach Couple 2
Bride Drags Groom
Bride In Charge
Bride Kisses Frog
Cake Climb
Cell Phone Couple
Expecting Bride
Fishing Couple 1
Fishing Couple 2
Football Couple
Golfing Groom
Groom Pulling Bride
Kissing Couple 1
Kissing Couple 2
Love Pinch
Mad Couple Back-to-Back
Metal Cutouts
Runaway Bride
Runaway Groom
Two Grooms
& best of all...  you -- as Custom Cake Toppers  (here's similar)

Buttercream - a smooth, soft icing that can be spread or piped
Fondant - a thick mass that can be rolled, draped, or poured over a cake

Twin Cities Wedding Cake Bakeries
Buttercream, Minnetonka, St. Paul, & Stillwater
Country Cake Cupboard, Long Lake
Denny's 5th Avenue, Bloomington
Dorothy Ann Bakery, Woodbury

Cake Questions
Is the date & time available?
What are the cake options?
What size of cake options are there for the number of guests?
Is a taste test possible & is there a charge?
Is there a cake delivery fee?wedding icing
Are there fees for  stands, columns, & supports?
Is there a cake cutting fee?
Is there a serving fee?
When is the deposit due & what percentage or amount is due?
When is the balance due?
Is there a rate guarantee?
What is the cancellation & refund policy?



Have you ever struggled to get 6 or 7 people to agree on what pizza to get? And everyone has to tell you what they don't like, as if you were even considering Tasmanian Lima Beans? And have you ever been to a restaurant that everyone agrees is 5 stars, and you seriously disagree?

That's what picking meals and caterers is like.  And unlike knowing whether you have been to a certain restaurant, how do you know whether you have eaten from a particular caterer before?

And this is one of the largest expenses of a wedding -- feeding your guests.

Some caterers have exclusive contracts with certain locations. In that case, the question is whether you want to use that location even if the caterer has a bad reputation.

Caterer Questions
Is the date & time available?
What serving styles (buffet, formal) are available?
What are the menu options?
Do they charge less for children's plates?
What are the package & pricing options?
Are gratuities & taxes included in the stated prices?
Are there overtime fees & policies?
Is taste testing possible & is there a fee?
What beverage options are available?
Does the caterer have a liquor license?
What is the charge for bartenders?
What is the staff to guest ratio?
Will the staff be professionally dressed?
What are the options & fees for a cake?
Is cake cutting & serving included?
Are chairs, tables, linens, plates, crystal, & flatware included?
What is a typical place setting?
Are there linen & plate color options other than white?
Are there decoration options & fees?
Does the caterer coordinate with the florist?
Are there separate setup & clean up fees?
What is the contract deadline & cancellation-refund policy?
When is the deadline for the number of guests?
When is the deposit due & what percentage or amount?
When is the balance due?
Is there a rate guarantee?



minister or officiant (enters)
groomsmen (escorting parents)
ring bearer
bridesmaids (individually)
flower girl
Giving of the Bride
Moment of Remembrance (deceased)
Pledge of Support by parents
Parents or sponsors Involvement (unity candle)
Reading #1
Words on Love or Marriage
Blessing of Rings
Exchange of Rings & Vows (make it your own)
somewhat traditional  vows:
BRIDE, "Do you take GROOM to be your wedded husband, to share your life openly, standing with him, in sickness and in health, in joy and in sorrow, in hardship and in ease, to cherish and to love, so long as you both shall live?"
GROOM, "Do you take BRIDE to be your wedded wife, to share your life openly, standing with her, in sickness and in health, in joy and in sorrow, in hardship and in ease, to cherish and to love, so long as you both shall live?"
Reading #2
Charge to the Couple - Affirmation of Love
Couple Unity Activity (light a candle, drink from a chalice)
Nuptial Blessing
Pronouncement of Marriage
Announcement of Marriage
Receiving Line

Other cultural and regional traditions.

Ceremony Questions
Is the date & time available?
How much time is allowed?
Will there be other events scheduled the same day?
When is the site available for rehearsal?
How many guests can this location accomodate?
What is the cost?
Are there photo or video restrictions?
What are the choices of the officiant?
Can we have an outside officiant?
Are there restrictions on the type of ceremony?
Can we write our own vows?
Can candles be burned?
Do you have your own organist, pianist, or other musicians?
Are there musician restrictions?
Can we have outside musician?
Is the sound system included in the cost?
What is the timeframe for decorations?
Are there decorating restrictions?
Is there a private dressing room?
Is there plenty of free parking?
Is there a drop off - pick up location at the front of the building?
Can guests throw rice, birdseed, or rose petals or blow bubbles?
Is there a cleaning fee?
Is there liability insurance?
How do we secure the date and time?
When is the deposit due?
When is the balance due?
What is the cancellation-refund policy?


Ceremony Location

Basilica of St. Mary - celebrates about 100 marriages a year
Cathedral of St. Paul  - has a 49 page policy statement & guidebook
Cedarhurst Mansion, Cottage Grove (capacity)
Como Park - Marjorie McNeely Conservatory - over 300 weddings a year
James J. Hill Reference Library -accommodates 150 for ceremonies plus reception, 215 for reception only (photos)
Japanese Gardens, Bloomington - May-October
(<101 guests)
Landmark Center, St Paul (1902) has six room options for rent
Mill City Museum, Minneapolis - accommodates <220 (D'Amico)
Millenium Hotel, Minneapolis - 14th floor dome surrounded by skyline (<101 guests)
Minnesota History Center - make history (Bon Appétit cafe)
Minnesota Renaissance Festival - make specific history (Europe 14-17th centuries) (details, see p11 to improve the experience)
Minnetonka Orchards, Minnetrista, MN - gazebo & orchard

more wedding locations
churches & parks                                          

Minneapolis Parks  (rules) (fees)
- chairs, amps, & tents are only allowed through Aarcee
- permits are required for weddings and paid photography
- parks close at 10pm
Father Hennepin Bluffs Park (Stone Arch Bridge) - 420 Main St SE
Lyndale Park Rose Garden - 4124 Roseway Rd
Minnehaha Falls - 4801 S Minnehaha Park Dr
Wedding Hill in Theodore Wirth Park - 1339 Theodore Wirth Pkwy

St. Paul Parks - May-September
Como Park - Marjorie McNeely Conservatory
Como Park Lakeside Pavilion
Como Zoo Picnic Pavilion
Irvine Park - 281 Walnut St (gazebo)
Kellogg Mall Park - Kellogg between Wabasha & Robert (< 200)
Mears Park - 221 E. 5th St (200 people)
Phalen Park Amphitheater (100 people)
Rice Park - 109 W. 4th St. (200 people)
Raspberry Island - Schubert Club Bandshell (full for 2009)
Upper Landing Park - Shepard Road & Chestnut

             Muriel Sahlin Arboretum (300 people, rental, video)

still more wedding locations
Grandiose Weddings (by Seating Capacity)



Ask people to help you with your wedding.

Favors - as in, bubbles or candy or novelties
beau coup
Oriental Trading Company - wedding supplies
Wedding Mountain



Fees - officiant or minister fee, musician fee, custodian fee, bartender fee, cake cutting fee, cancellation, champagne opening, delivery, overtime, serving, restroom attendants, security, taste test, valet parking...fees
Gratuity - bartenders, chauffeurs, musicians, & special services.
Postage - Invitations & Response Cards
Taxes - Catering Sales Tax, Taxation of Beverage Alcohol in Minnesota



There's the bridal bouquet, the corsages, boutonnières, church altar centerpiece, church pew decorations, reception table centerpieces, and sometimes the bride carries one bouquet but does a switch and throws a second bouquet -- very tricky. It started out with a last minute check at the florists:

Bride: "Wow, this all looks so nice... smells so good... you're so lucky to work in such a nice smelling place... what's this?"
Florist: "That's your bouquet."
Bride: "I thought you said that was my bouquet, over there."
Florist: "Uh yeah, that's also your bouquet."
Bride: "So I have two bouquets?!?"
Florist: "Right. Everyone does that."
Bride: "Really? Why wouldn't all the flowers be together in one bouquet?"
Florist: "Because... ah... you have to throw it. And most people want to keep it. So there's two."

Some people move the ceremony flowers to the reception to get twice the mileage out of them. Personally I hardly stop to notice the flowers.

Gender Neutral

On May 14, 2013, Governor Mark Dayton signed HF 1054 into law, making Minnesota's marriage law gender neutral. Minnesota became the 12th state to recognize gender neutral marriages. The law goes into effect August 1, 2013.

To celebrate Marriage Equality, the City of Saint Paul and Saint Paul Department of Parks and Recreation offered expanded service hours and free permits for wedding ceremonies on August 1, 2013 at Como Park Zoo and Conservatory and Irvine Park.  Reservations were blocked in 90 minute increments with 30 minutes between bookings [see link for details].

All couples should take what traditions they like, leave what they don't like, and make it your own.



Hopes and Dreams: Stuck on AutoDrive - is the perfect gift book! It's a fun novel about learning to live happily-ever-after. It's also about friends, creativity, romance, and exploring the Twin Cities!
hotel stay
- either in town or as part of their honeymoon, give them a night at a hotel
- it's the open possibility gift
monogrammed gift
- monogrammed towelsmonogrammed wallpaper, Things Remembered

Gift Registry:  Crate & Barrel, Herberger's, JC Penney's, Kohl's, Macy's, Neiman Marcus, & Target.

However, Home Depot & Mill's Fleet Farm don't seem to have gift registries.


Gown - Wedding Dress

something borrowed - many people will consider lending their wedding gown a compliment - it's practically them walking down the aisle again!

rent for 1/3 the cost

design your own wedding gown online or
built your own dream dress 
enlightened wedding dress
with built-in lights

wedding dress fabric


Groomsman Kit

The Groomsman Kit is not as practical as the Bridesmaid Kit. However, with careful planning the Groomsman Kit can be as important to complete the experience for the Bride and Groom.  Since the advent of tin cans, strings of cans have been tied to bumpers of the cars of the Just Married to symbolize... uh... the domestication of the happy couple.  However there are higher art forms. Having the best man lose the ring during the ceremony, praying aloud for help, and having the ring lowered on a fishing line -- that's classic.  For a toast at the reception, take out what appears to be a stack of paper. Unfold it and unfold it and keep unfolding it until it is a very large sheet of paper. Then give your speech.

So essentially the Groomsman Kit is whatever may be necessary to give the Bride and Groom memories that they will always cherish.



Invitations - Traditional wording (with the couple as hosts)
Miss Jane Smith
Mr Joe Anderson
request the honor of of your presence at their marriage

on Saturday, the Fifteenth of August
Two thousand and nine
at Two O'Clock
The Minnesota Church
600 Sixth Street
Minneapolis, Minnesota

With a reception afterwards at
The Minnesota Hall


Mr John Smith
Mr Joe Anderson
request the honor of of your presence at their marriage

on Saturday, the Fifteenth of August
Two thousand and nine
at Two O'Clock
The Minnesota Church
600 Sixth Street
Minneapolis, Minnesota

With a reception afterwards at
The Minnesota Hall

Invitations - Traditional wording
(with bride's parents as hosts)
Mr & Mrs John Smith request the pleasure of your company
at the marriage of their daughter Jane
Mr Joe Anderson

on Saturday, the Fifteenth of August
Two thousand and nine
at Two O'Clock
The Minnesota Church
600 Sixth Street
Minneapolis, Minnesota

With a reception afterwards at
The Minnesota Hall


Mr & Mrs John Smith request the pleasure of your company
at the marriage of their daughter Jane
Miss Jenny Anderson

on Saturday, the Fifteenth of August
Two thousand and nine
at Two O'Clock
The Minnesota Church
600 Sixth Street
Minneapolis, Minnesota

With a reception afterwards at
The Minnesota Hall

*  Write out all dates, times, and street names.
*  For religious weddings, say "request the honor of your presence."
*  For non-religious weddings, say "request the pleasure of your company."
*  Consider giving directions and a map.
*  Consider including a link to a website with engagement pictures.
*  Consider including an e-mail address for responses and a phone number for people without e-mail access, instead of a response card.
*   Other activities for out of town guests at the Twin Cities Calendar

Free wedding invitation fonts:
Brock Script   |   Chopin   |   Cigno   |   English   |   Champignon   |   Marriage

Invitation templates
(pc & mac): &
Please -- proofread - proofread - proofread - proofread - proofread

Marriage License

Minnesota Statute 517.08 - Application for License:  Marriage License
*  fee $110 ($40 with proof of premarital education course)
*  photo ID, social security numbers, & dates of birth required
*  waiting period of 5 days
*  no blood test
Apply at county offices -
Anoka  |  Carver  |  Dakota  |  Hennepin  |  Ramsey  |  Scott  |  Washington

Minnesota Same-Sex Marriage Information
              On May 14, 2013, Governor Mark Dayton signed HF 1054 into law, making Minnesota's marriage law gender neutral. The law went into effect August 1, 2013.

Wisconsin Statute 765 - The Family Code:
* fee $100
* apply between 6 and 30 days from the wedding date
* must present certified birth certificate

St. Croix County


Music - Ceremony

The Bridal Chorus by Richard Wagner was written for the opera Lohengrin and is commonly played for the bride's entrance. [sheet music - pdf]

The Wedding March by Felix Mendelssohn was written as incidental music for Shakespeare's play A Midsummer Night's Dream in 1842. It's commonly played at wedding ceremonies, usually played on a pipe organ. [sheet music - pdf]love music

most common
Bridal Chorus by Richard Wagner
[virtual organ - mp3 | youtube
Wedding March by Felix Mendelssohn virtual organ - mp3 | youtube

other common 
Amazing Grace by John Newton -  sheet music | youtube | wikipedia
Ave Maria by J. S. Bach & Charles Gounod -  sheet music |  youtube | wikipedia
Canon In D by Johann Pachelbel -  sheet music | youtube | wikipedia | mp3
Greensleeves (English folk song) - sheet music | youtube | wikipedia
Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (Cantata 147) by Bach - sheet music | youtube | wikipedia
Ode to Joy (Symphony 9) by Beethoven - sheet 1, 2 | youtube
(Muppets) | wikipedia

Live musicians
Redpath is a singing trio in the Twin Cities with professional experience planning music for wedding ceremonies. 


Music - Reception

common romantic songs
Amazed by Lonestar
Blue Moon by Ella Fitzgerald
Can't Help Falling in Love by Elvis 
Come Away With Me by Norah Jones
Endless Love by Lionel Ritchie
Fly Me To The Moon by Frank Sinatra
Good Morning Beautiful by Steve Holy
I Loved Her First by Heartland
In The Mood by the Glenn Miller Orch.

It Had To Be You by Harry Connick, Jr.
Let's Get It On by Marvin Gaye
Let's Stay Together by Al Green
Moonlight Serenade by the Glenn Miller
My Girl by the Temptationslove music
My Love by Paul McCartney
Slow Dancing by Johnny Rivers
Unchained Melody by Righteous Bros
Unforgettable by Nat King Cole

What A Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong
When A Man Loves a Woman by Percy Sledge
Wonderful Tonight by Eric Clapton
You And Me by Lifehouse

common up tempo dance songs
All I Ever Wanted by Santana
All I Wanna Do by Sheryl Crowe
Beautiful Day by U2
Can't Get Enough of Your Love by Barry White
Crazy In Love by Beyoncé
Dancing Queen by Abba
Don't Stop Believin' by Journey
Get Down Tonight by KC & the Sunshine Band
Get Ready by the Temptations
Happy by Pharrell Williams
Hey Ya by Outkast
I Can't Help Myself by the Four Tops
I Got You by James Brown
Jump Jive An' Wail by the Brian Setzer Orchestra
La Bamba - Ritchie Valens
Last Dance by Donna Summer
Let's Go Crazy by Prince
Mony Mony by Billy Idol
Oh, Pretty Woman by Roy Orbison
Only Wanna Be With You by Hootie & the Blowfish
Rock Around the Clock by Bill Haley & the Comets
Rock This Town by the Stray Cats
She Will Be Loved by Maroon 5
Shout by the Isley Brothers
The Twist by Chubby Checker
Twist and Shout by the Beatles
Walk Like An Egyptian by the Bangles
We Are Family by Sister Sledge
What I Like About You by the Romantics
White Wedding by Billy Idol
You Should Be Dancing by the Bee Gees

over played (often requested Not to play)
Brick House by the Commodores
Bunny Hop by Ray Anthonylove music
Celebration by Kool & the Gang
Chicken Dance by Werner Thomas
Electric Boogie (slide) by Marcia Griffiths
Hokey Pokey by Ray Anthony
Macarena by Los Del Rio
Tubthumper by Chumbawamba
Whoomp! (there it is) by Tag Team
YMCA by Village People

At some wedding receptions, people have talked with me about the guaranteed songs that will be played because they are always played. At others, parents have talked with me how in the past ten years, more jazz and big band music is played at weddings than when they were married. Wedding music changes.

Selecting the DJ or host that makes announcements is as important as the music; they are the voice of the reception. At one reception, the DJ thought he was funny, but after four hours of drinking he thought he was hilarious. And you worried about inviting Uncle Tipsy.

Four hours?!? Yes. That's 60 four minute songs.



As a professional photographer, I need to tell you that you don't necessarily need a professional photographer. Maybe you do; maybe you don't.

Many photographers seem to think the best way to get paid more money is to run around growling and looking exhausted. And the people in their pictures look worried that the photographer might keel over. A hundred pictures of worried people is not what most people want from professional photographers.

Any photographer, professional or amateur, needs to:
•  create a rapport with the subjects for posed pictures (but...)
•  be invisible during the event
•  have an understanding of composition
•  symmetry, rule of threes (break this rule artistically)
•  turning people inward toward the couple
•  keeping everyone in-frame, yet balanced
•  elimination of distractions, tilted eyeglasses
•  looking for angles, patterns, lines, texture, & depth
•  anticipate the action
•  use high quality cameras
•  shoot with two
•  have a third as a backup (consider renting)  & spare batteries
•  have lights, extension cords, tripod, monopod, gaffers tape, & a step ladder
•  have a love for the event & the couple

Photographers with a flat hourly or daily rate (picture CD or CDs included)
ASG Wedding Photography - $100/hour, $100/engagement shoot, free CD, free consultation

New Antique Portraits
A tintype wedding portrait from Blkk Hand studio could provide a one-of-a-kind wedding momento. Contact Carla Rodriguez for an appointment.

Having a good wedding is far more important than the resulting photo album. The couple should know that, and the photographer should know that. The photographer's shoot list should be secondary to the wedding and the happiness of the couple. Check mark only the requested photographs.

The Photographer's Wedding Photograph list:
___ Bride alone (closeup & full length)
___ Bride with Maid of Honor
___ Bride with bridesmaids
___ Groom with bridesmaidscamera
___ Bride with her mother
___ Bride with her father
___ Bride with her parents
___ Bride with her sisters and brothers
___ Bride & Groom together
___ Bride & Groom closeup of their hands clasped together
___ Closeup of rings
___ Bride & Groom with his parents
___ Bride & Groom with her parents
___ Bride & Groom with families
___ Bride & Groom with entire wedding party
___ Bride & Groom with flower girl and ring bearer
___ Bride & Groom with dog
___ Groom with parents
___ Groom with his mother
___ Groom with his father
___ Groom with his parents
___ Groom with his sisters and brothers
___ Groom with best man
___ Groom with groomsmen
___ Bride with groomsmen

___ Wedding dress draped over a chair
___ Fastening the wedding dress
___ Bride's garter
___ Bride's veil
___ Bride looking into a mirror
___ Bride looking out window
___ Bride looking at clock
___ Bride and bridesmaids putting on makeup
___ Bride pinning corsage, boutonnière on mother, father
___ Bride hugging parents, crushing corsage, boutonnière
___ Bride touching up
___ Bride and parents leaving for ceremony
___ Groom tying tie
___ Best Man retying Groom's tie
___ Groom looking into mirror
___ Groom and parents leaving for ceremony

___ Outside of ceremony location
___ Guests walking into ceremony location
___ Bride and father entering ceremony location
___ Parents being seated
___ Grandparents being seated
___ Maid of honor walking down the aisle
___ Bridesmaids walking down the aisle
___ Flower girl and ring bearer walking down aisle
___ Groom waiting for bride
___ Ceremony musicians
___ Officiant
___ Altar during ceremony
___ Close up of bride, just before she makes her entrance
___ Bride and father walking down aisle
___ Groom seeing bride for first time
___ Bride and father walking down the aisle, groom in the distance
___ Bride's father and Bride hugging at end of aisle
___ Shot of the audience from the bride and groom's point of view
___ The unity candle
___ Close up of bride and groom saying the vows
___ Wide shot of bride and groom saying the vows
___ Exchanging the rings
___ Close up of hands
___ The kiss
___ Bride & Groom walking up the aisle
___ Receiving line
___ Bride & Groom outside on steps
___ Guests throwing rose petals or rice or blowing bubbles
___ Bride & Groom hugging guests, laughing, getting congratulations
___ Bride & Groom getting in car
___ Bride & Groom in back seat

___ Outside of reception site
___ Bride & Groom arriving
___ Bride & Groom greeting guests
___ Table centerpieces
___ Table setting
___ Bride & Groom's table (head table)
___ Musicians or DJ
___ Place card table
___ Wedding cake
___ Gift table (time-lapse photography)
___ A shot of bride & groom with guests at each table
___ Bride with friends
___ Groom with friends
___ Bride & Groom's first dance
___ Bride & Father dancing
___ Groom & Mother dancing
___ Guests dancing
___ Bride & Groom cutting the cake
___ Bride & Groom feeding each other cake
___ Toasts
___ Bride & Groom drinking champagne
___ Signing the marriage license
___ Bride throwing bouquetwedding roses
___ Groom retrieving garter
___ Groom tossing garter
___ The newlywed's car
___ Bride & Groom leaving party
___ Bride & Groom driving away

A video camera recording the ceremony should be on a tripod, to avoid creating an earthquake explanation for the video shakes.


Quotes about Marriage

"A man in love is incomplete until he is married.  Then he's finished."
- Zsa Zsa Gabor

"Marrying a man is like buying something you've been admiring for a long time in a shop window. You may love it when you get home, but it doesn't always go with everything in the house."
- Jean Kerr

"The trouble with being the best man is that you don't get a chance to prove it."
- Murray, The Boy Who Stole The Funeral

"We're happily married. We wake up in the middle of the night and laugh at each other."
- Bob Hope

"The two shall become one."
- Bible, Ephesians 5:31

"What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder."
- Bible, Matthew 19:6unquote


Quotes - Wedding Ceremony Readings

love quote from Hopes and Dreams: Stuck on AutoDrive
(an alternative to 1 Corinthians 13).

love quote from The Bible - 1 Corinthians 13:
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never ends; as for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. For our knowledge is imperfect and our prophecy is imperfect; but when the perfect comes, the imperfect will pass away. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall understand fully, even as I have been fully understood. So faith, hope, love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

Sonnet 18 by William Shakespeare
Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date;
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm'd;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature's changing course untrimm'd;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st;
Nor shall death brag thou wand'rest in his shade
Which in eternal lines to time thou grow'st
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.

The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran
Then Almitra spoke agin and said, "And what of marriage, master?" And he answered, saying:

"You were born together, and together you shall be forevermore.
You shall be together when the white wings of death scatter your days. Ay, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God.
But let there be spaces in your togetherness, and let the winds of heavens dance between you. Love one another, but make not a bond of love.

Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. Fill each other's cup but drink not from one cup. Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf. Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.

Give your hearts, but not into each other's keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other's shadow."


Reception Location

Circus Juventas - big tent near  St. Paul's Highland Park Golf  Course (Sat nights only)
Como Park - Marjorie McNeely Conservatory - over 300 weddings a year
James J. Hill Reference Library, St Paul -accommodates 215 for receptions, 150 for ceremonies plus reception (photos) (Mintáhoe)
Japanese Gardens, Bloomington - May-October (<101 guests)
Landmark Center - built 1902 - has six room options & a rental guide
Mill City Museum, Minneapolis - accommodates <220 (D'Amico)
Millenium Hotel, Minneapolis - 14th floor dome surrounded by skyline (<101 guests)
Minnesota History Center - make history (Bon Appétit cafe)
Minnesota Renaissance Festival - make specific history (Europe 14-17th centuries) (details, see p11 to improve the experience) (<150)
Minnetonka Orchards, Minnetrista, MN - gazebo & orchard (<300)
The Depot, Minneapolis - accommodates < 2,000 guests
Van Dusen Center, Minneapolis (1892) accommodates < 350 (floor plan)

Bloomington Parks
- 3.2 beer in cans is the only alcohol allowed
- no glass containers
- Public Entertainment License Application
- food or beverages served to the public must have a permit
- tents (& pony rides) require a Temporary Conditional Use permit
- amplified music must be approved by the Bloomington City Council
- parks close at 10pm
Bush Lake (form) (info)
Moir Park (form) (info)

Minneapolis Parks reception locations
- 3.2 beer in cans is the only alcohol allowed
- permits are required for weddings and paid photography
- parks close at 10pm
Theodore Wirth Golf Chalet Fireplace Room  (rental)
Loring Park Community Arts Center
Columbia Manor Reception Hall  (rental)
Nicollet Island Park Pavilion  (Mintáhoe)
Cowles Conservatory

St. Paul Parks reception locations
- 3.2 beer allowed in certain parks (no glass containers) from 8am-8pm
approved catering list
Cherokee Park
Como Park Lakeside Pavilion (Black Bear Crossings) (rates)
Como Zoo Picnic Pavilion (Lance Catering) (seating)
Highland Park Picnic Pavilion
Phalen Park - Ampitheater, Picnic Pavilion, Picnic Shelter (on island), & Phalen Park Clubhouse Banquet Room

             Muriel Sahlin Arboretum (300 people, rental, video)

and related supplies                tent
Aarcee Classic Events
Metro Tent Rental
Midway Party Rental
Omega Event Services

Linens - sometimes available from the caterer, sometimes from the reception site, or Linen Effects

Other Reception Locations
The St. Paul Hotel - discounts for Friday & Sunday events (25-400) (offsite catering)
Weisman Art Museum - no religious ceremonies, no candles, special approval for alcohol



pick a gift
Gift Registry:  Crate & Barrel, Herberger's, JC Penney's, Kohl's, Macy's, Neiman Marcus, & Target.

However, Home Depot & Mill's Fleet Farm don't seem to have gift registries.



In 1947, Frances Gerety, an advertising copywriter for N.W. Ayer, created the "Diamonds Are Forever" slogan for De Beers. Within three years, eighty percent of weddings included diamond rings. De Beers wants you to spend two months salary on a diamond and will do the math for you.

Others will point out that diamonds have no intrinsic value, are not rare, are not the most expensive gem (rubies are), that they drop in value after purchase faster than a new car rolling off a dealer lot, and can be an unintentional weapon -- scratching the wearer and anyone holding hands with them.

Some couples postone elaborate rings for a wedding anniversary and exchange simple rings for the wedding. Some forego elaborate rings.



Some ceremony locations have aisle* runners, the white fabric carpet for the ceremony. Otherwise they can be rented through many florists.

But unless your wedding has less than 40 people, there is a different type of runner that runnerevery wedding needs. It's the person that helps speed up the photography session by calling people (or rounding them up) for the next picture. The runner is the photographer's wrangler, and the person who runs after something for the bride or bride's mother or anyone else. The runner can't be in the wedding party because it has be someone who can leave or get messy and has plenty of energy and knows everyone. It's an intense job -- I've done it.

* The couple walk down the nave (the middle walkway), not the aisle (the side walkways), if you want to really get picky about it.



Every 17 minutes a couple is married in Minnesota, the statistics say, but I doubt it's that often at night or in the winter or at night in the winter.

The average U.S. engagement ring was $6,348 in 2008 and was an average of $4,435 in 2006, and an increase of 30%* in just two years. And 58% of brides expected to use credit cards to help pay for their weddings, according to a survey.

The average cost of the wedding dress was $1,075 in 2008.
The average cost of the wedding was $28,082 in 2008.

* They say it's a 43% increase, but my calculator and my eyes see it as 30%.



Broadway Limousine 763-241-9320 (NLA, MPLOA, MN DOT 161105)
Cities Limousine 612-710-2030 (NLA)
Eclipse Limousine 651-293-1111 (NLA, MCTA, MN DOT #314600)

Kirk Limousine 612-221-6470 (NLA, MN DOT #174430)
Premier Transportation 612-331-7433 (NLA, MCTA, MN DOT #145320)
Renee's Royal Valet 763-551-1919 (NLA, MCTA, MN DOT #36532)
Star Limousine 866-440-2907(NLA, MPLOA, MN DOT #371850)
Total Luxury Limousine 651-770-5668 (NLAMCTA, MN DOT #353723)
more through the NLA and the MCTA

Livery (Live Transportation)
The Hitching Company 612-338-7777 (at St. Anthony Main)
Lindell Carriages 651-438-3452



The bride needs to see the groom in his tux before the wedding day.

And if the shoes are thrown in free; they will be worth every penny.


Uniquely You

Go Green
Do you want an environmentally friendly wedding? A green wedding?
Consider using the natural light of summer (construction season) and have your wedding outside (tents are recommended).
Have your wedding and reception within walking distance (or a carriage ride apart).
Use e-mail (and a website) instead of paper invitations and responses.
Decorate with live plants instead of cut flowers by having the wedding at the Como Park Conservatory or by renting plants. Probably some plants will have to be from a florist -- "I'm sorry. I can't dance. My corsage is rooted."
Rent reuseable tableclothes and other decorations instead of disposable decorations that fill up landfills.
Use cheap digital cameras instead of disposable cameras for candid reception pictures.

Go Purple
Have a Minnesota Vikings wedding!
Tailgate in a Minnesota Vikings tailgating lot and welcome other Vikings fans to your ceremony. Champagne & BYOB
Purple bridesmaid dresses!  Big numbers optional.
Honeymoon at the USBank stadium!

Love To Shop?
Nothing says "I can't get out of the mall" like a wedding at The Chapel of Love at the Mall of America!


Venues for Grandiose

Venues by Seating Capacity
US Bank Stadium-opens 2016 (65,000), TCF Bank Stadium (50,000), Target Field - Twins Ballpark (40,000), Target Center (20,500), Xcel Energy Center (19,355),  State Fair Grandstand (17,000), Williams Arena (14,625), Mariucci Arena (10,000), CHS Field  (7,210), Sports Pavilion (5,840), Roy Wilkins Auditorium (5,678), Northrop Auditorium (4,845), Minneapolis Convention Center (3,433), Island Event Center - Treasure Island (3,000), Orpheum Theatre (2,600), Orchestra Hall (2,450), State Theatre (2,150), Mystic Lake Showroom (2,100), The Brick (2,000), Ordway Center (1,900), O'Shaughnessy (1,815), Weesner Amphitheater (1,500), Ted Mann Concert Hall (1,126), Guthrie Theater - Wurtele Stage (1,100), Fitzgerald Theater (1,058), Ames Center (1,014), Pantages Theatre (1,000), Hopkins Arts Center (715), History Theatre (587), Cowles Center - Goodale Theater (550), SteppingStone Theatre (430), Pepito's Parkway Theater (400), McGuire Theater (385), Bloomington Arts Center - Schneider Theater (366), Park Square Theatre (348), Rosemount Community Center Auditorium (350), E. M. Pearson Theater (340), St. Paul Student Center (327), Sundin Music Hall (325), History Center - 3M Auditorium (314), Maplewood Arts Theatre (276), Penumbra Theatre (265), Theatre in the Round (259), Hennepin Stages (240), Weyerhaeuser Auditorium (230), MacPhail Center For Music - Antonello Auditorium (225), Jungle Theater (148),  Patrick's Cabaret (125), Intermedia Arts (117), Pillsbury House Theatre (96), & People’s Center Theater (70).

Ames Center - 12600 Nicollet Av, Burnsville 55337 (rental space)
•  1,014 seats - main stage, 150 seats - Black Box, 100 seats - meeting room

•  opened 2009, renamed in 2014 (for 10 years), formerly Burnsville Performing Arts Center
Bloomington Arts Center - 1800 W Old Shakopee Road, Bloomington 55431 (rental space)
•  366 seats - Schneider Theater, 115 seats - Black Box
•  opened 2003
CHS Field - 360 N Broadway St, St Paul, MN 55101
•  seats 7,210
•  opened May 18, 2015

Cowles Center for Dance (formerly Shubert Theater) - 528 Hennepin Av S, Minneapolis 55403
•  550 seats (Goodale Theater)
•  reopened 2011, built in 1910 as Shubert Theater, moved two blocks in 1999
E. M. Pearson Theater, Concordia University - 312 N Hamline Av, St. Paul 55104
•  340 seats
•  built in 1994

F.K. Weyerhaeuser Auditorium, Landmark Center - 75 W 5thSt, St. Paul 55102   (rental space)
•  230 seats
•  built in 1902
Fitzgerald Theater - 10 E Exchange St, St. Paul 55101  (rental space)
•  1,058 seats in a two-balcony theater, every seat is within 87 feet of the stage
•  reopened 1986, built in 1910 as The Schubert
•  home of Prairie Home Companion
Guthrie Theater - 818 S. 2nd St, Minneapolis 55415  (rental space)
•  1,100 seats - Wurtele Thrust Stage,  700 seats - McGuire Proscenium Stage, 250 seats - Dowling Studio
•  opened 2006, original theater opened 1963
Heights Theater - 3951 Central Av NE, Columbia Heights 55421  (rental space)
•  400 seats
•  opened 1926
Hennepin Stages - 824 Hennepin Av, Minneapolis 55403  (rental space)
•  240 seats (main floor) cabaret setting, 230 seats (upper level)
•  formerly Hey City Theater
History Center - 3M Auditorium - 345 W Kellogg Blvd, St. Paul 55102  (rental space)
•  314 seats
•  opened 1992
Hopkins Center for the Arts - 1111 Mainstreet, Hopkins 55343  (rental space)
•  716 seats (574 main floor, 142 balcony)
•  opened 1997
Island Event Center - Treasure Island - 5734 Sturgeon Lake Rd, Red Wing 55066
•  3,000 seats, every seat is within 125 feet of the stage
•  opened 2008
Jungle Theater - 2951 Lyndale Av S, Minneapolis 55408
•  148 seats
•  opened 1999
MacPhail Center For Music - Antonello Auditorium - 501 S 2nd St, Minneapolis 55401
•  225 seats
•  opened 2008, original 1923
McGuire Theater - Walker Art Center - 1750 Hennepin Av, Minneapolis 55403  (rental space)
•  385 seats
•  opened 2005Metrodome
Midway Stadium - 1771 Energy Park Dr, St. Paul 55108
•  6,069 seats outside
•  opened 1982
Minneapolis Convention Center - 1301 2nd Av S, Minneapolis 55403  (rental space)
•  3,433 seats in auditorium
•  opened 1991
Minnesota Zoo - Weesner Family Amphitheater - 13000 Zoo Blvd, Apple Valley 55124
•  1,500 seats outside, limestone amphitheater, six canopy structures
Mystic Lake Showroom - 2400 Mystic Lake Blvd, Prior Lake 55372  (rental space)
•  2,100 seats, oversized 21-inch-wide chairs, every seat is within 120 feet of the stage
•  opened 2007, originally Mystic Lake Celebrity Palace
Northrop Auditorium - University of Minnesota - 84 Church St, Minneapolis 55455  (rental space)
•  4,845 seats (2517 main floor, 2248 balcony, 80 orchestra pit)
•  opened 1928, formerly the College of Pharmacy medicinal herb garden
Orchestra Hall - 1111 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis 55403  (rental space)
•  2,450 seats (1,500 main floor, 1,000 in 3 balconies)
•  opened 1974
•  home of the Minnesota Orchestra
Ordway Center - 345 Washington St, St. Paul 55102
•  1,900 seats (main hall), 306 seats (McKnight Theatre)
•  opened 1985
•  home of the Minnesota Opera and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra
Orpheum Theatre - 910 Hennepin Av, Minneapolis 55403  (rental space)
•  2,600 seats (1500 main floor, 1100 in the three level balcony)
•  reopened 1993, opened 1921 as the Hennepin
O'Shaughnessy - College of St. Catherine - 2004 Randolph Av, St. Paul 55105  (rental space)
•  1,815 seats
•  reopened 2003
Pantages Theatre - 710 Hennepin Av, Minneapolis 55402  (rental space)
•  1,000 seats
•  reopened 2002, opened 1916
Park Square Theatre - 20 W 7th Place, St. Paul 55102
•  350 seats
•  opened 1995, founded 1974
Penumbra Theatre - 270 N Kent St, St. Paul 55102
•  265 seats
Rosemount Community Center Auditorium - 13885 S Robert Trail, Rosemount 55068
•  350 seats
Roy Wilkins Auditorium - 175 W Kellogg Blvd, St. Paul 55102  (rental space)
•  5,678 seats
•  opened in 1932
St. Paul Student Center Theater - University of Minnesota - 2017 Buford Av, St. Paul 55108
•  327 seats
•  reopened in 1979, built in 1959
Sports Pavilion - University of Minnesota - 1925 University Av SE, Minneapolis 55455
•  5,840 seats
•  reopened 1994, built in 1928
State Fair Grandstand - 1265 Snelling Av N, St. Paul 55108  (rental space)
•  17,000 seats outside
•  reopened 2003, opened 1909    
State Theatre - 805 Hennepin Av, Minneapolis 55402  (rental space)
•  2,150 seats (1300 main floor, 850 balcony)
•  reopened 1991, opened in 1921
SteppingStone Theatre - 55 Victoria St N, St. Paul 55104
•  430 seats
•  opened 2007, former Grace Community Church, founded 1987
Target Center - 600 1st Av N, Minneapolis 55403  (rental space)
•  20,500 seats, inner bowl seats 7,500
•  opened 1990
Target Field - 1 Twins Way  Minneapolis, MN 55403
•  40,000 seats outside (18,500 infield seats)
TCF Bank Stadium - University of Minnesota  **opens 2009**
•  50,000 seats
Ted Mann Concert Hall - University of Minnesota - 2128 4th St S, Minneapolis 55455  (rental space)
•  1,126 seats (710 main floor, 208 1st tier, 208 2nd tier)
•  opened 1993
Theatre in the Round - 245 Cedar Av, Minneapolis 55454
•  259 seats, every seat is within 30 feet of the stage
•  reopened 1969, formerly Bimbo's Pizza Emporium
US Bank Stadium - 401 Chicago Av, Minneapolis, MN 55415

•  65,000 seats
•  opened 2016
Williams Arena - University of Minnesota - 1925 University Av SE, Minneapolis 55455
•  14,625 seats
•  opened 1928
Xcel Energy Center - 199 W Kellogg Blvd, St. Paul 55102  (rental space)
•  19,355 seats (center stage-360), 13,500 (end stage 180)
•  opened 2000, replacing St. Paul Civic Center, which opened in 1973

The term "rental space" is used to identify links for rental space, bookings, and technical specifications of the space.


Weather for Summer Saturdays in 2009 - Minneapolis-St. Paul

Temperatures in degrees Fahrenheit (Averages 1970-2000; Extremes 1891-2008)

Saturday Avg Temp Avg High Avg Low Hotest Coldest
May 2, 2009 54 65 42 91 (1959) 24 (1961)
May 9, 2009 57 68 46 91 (1987) 27 (1966)
May 16, 2009 60 71 49 94 (1934) 31 (1929)
May 23, 2009 62 73 52 87 (1950) 28 (1963)
May 30, 2009 64 74 53 98 (1934) 37 (1947)
June 6, 2009 66 77 55 95 (1979) 36 (1897)
June 13, 2009 68 79 58 100 (1956) 37 (1969)
June 20, 2009 69 79 60 98 (1933) 41 (1992)
June 27, 2009 71 81 61 104 (1934) 44 (1925)
July 4, 2009 73 83 63 100 (1949) 43 (1972)
July 11, 2009 73 83 63 106 (1936) 49 (1945)
July 18, 2009 74 84 64 101 (1940) 52 (1962)
July 25, 2009 73 82 63 99 (1941) 50 (1891)
August 1, 2009 72 82 62 101 (1988) 49 (1962)
August 8, 2009 71 81 61 96 (1894) 50 (1972)
August 15, 2009 71 81 61 103 (1936) 47 (1960)
August 22, 2009 70 80 61 97 (1898) 46 (1891)
August 29, 2009 68 78 59 96 (1969) 45 (1911)
September 5, 2009 66 76 56 98 (1922) 36 (1962)

People associate Minneapolis-St. Paul with cold, but it also gets hot. Minneapolis was 108º F  on July 14, 1936, which is higher than any record high in Florida. The Twin Cities are also (on average) windier than Chicago, the windy city. On average June is the wettest month, and July is the warmest month in the Twin Cities.

The Farmer's Almanac is predicting above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation for the first half of the summer, followed by below normal temperatures and above normal precipitation after mid-July 2009.

Web Resources

Free Invitation Fontswedding fonts
Brock Script
Chopin Script
Marriage Script

Invitation templates (pc & mac)

Online Generators
color palette generator
countdown generator
message in flowers
wedding dress creatordream dress designer
wedding speech writer: groom - best man (another one) - father of the bride

Sakura Wedding Guest list - open-source from
Wedding Guest Tracker - open-source from


Wedding Fair

Have the wedding that best represents you.

Best Wishes,
~ ~

 Information is listed to aid loving, growing relationships and is not meant to endorse any business or method of getting hitched
See websites for details      © Copyright 2009-2018 Hopes and Dreams. All rights reserved.  Minneapolis - St. Paul, Minnesota
Read the novel about love & living happily ever after --
Hopes and Dreams: Stuck on AutoDrive
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