My interest in officiating weddings began while watching other officiants perform wedding ceremonies. I knew it was something I was capable of doing. I've always enjoyed weddings and admit to getting teary-eyed every time I see a bride walking down the aisle. In 2014, the opportunity for me to begin officiating weddings occurred when a nearly 40-year career in radio & TV broadcasting came to an end. With a background that included radio announcing, it was a natural fit for me to make the transition to such a joyful vocation. After taking the steps necessary to make officiating weddings legal, I very quickly began accumulating a number of booked wedding ceremonies.
I pride myself in creating wedding ceremonies customized to the couple's wishes. Your wedding ceremony will be a professional yet joyous event. A small PA system is included if needed
1) Will you officiate a traditional or non-traditional wedding?
Either. It's your choice, and it will be customized to your wishes.
2) Why should we choose you to officiate our wedding?
I have no bias towards what a wedding ceremony should include or not include, except for the components required by state law. These include the marriage license, a witness or two, the declaration of intent, and the pronouncement of marriage by a state-recognized officiant. All other elements of a wedding ceremony are optional and I will work with you to include whatever elements you wish. It's your wedding day and you should have the wedding of your wishes.
3) How many weddings have you officiated?
As of September, 2019, I have officiated over 170 weddings and ceremonies.
4) What are your religious views and how do they play into weddings you officiate?
I was baptized and raised Catholic. These days I take more of a non-denominational approach to my views. What's more important for a wedding are the couple's views. I chose to be ordained by the Universal Life Church Monastery for the purpose of officiating weddings. The ULC is a non-denominational religious organization that embraces any individual, no matter his or her spiritual background. My ULC ordination enables me to legally marry any two people in any state in the U.S. It allows me to customize a wedding ceremony to the religious or non-religious views held by the couple getting married. That includes weddings with no religious reference at all, or what you would think of as a "civil ceremony." But I like to make my "civil ceremonies" something more special than just going to city hall.
5) Will the wedding be recognized by my church?
It depends on the church, but it will absolutely be legal per New York State laws. If in doubt and a specific church-recognized wedding is important to you, it may be better to have your wedding officiated by a priest or minister ordained by your church.
6) Will you put limits on our photographer or videographer?
Only the limits that you request. I don't tell others how to do their job. If you wish, I can make a statement prior to the start of the ceremony, asking that attendees with cameras remain in their seat and not obstruct the work of your hired photographer and videographer.
7) How will you dress for the occasion?
Usually a men's suit. I also have a kilt, a Civil War uniform, and a 1940's Bomber Pilot outfit (see the photos). If you have a themed wedding requiring my wearing a different outfit, we can discuss it.
8) Will you officiate a same-sex wedding?
9) How far will you travel to officiate a wedding?
Up to a one-hour drive from Rochester, NY. That would be as far as Medina to the west, Geneva to the east, and Letchworth Park to the south.
10) What do you charge to officiate a wedding?
See the packages available and prices on the "Rates/Payment" tab above.
11) Is a deposit required?
To reserve the date, yes, $100 is required ($50 for elopements). First come, first served with a paid deposit.
12) Will you officiate a last-minute wedding?
If I am available, you have the marriage license (24-hour waiting period is required by NYS) and can provide at least one witness, yes. Full payment required prior to the start of the ceremony.
13) Should we invite you to the wedding reception?
It's your choice. I will not be offended if you don't invite me.
14) I've heard that you love to dance.....
Absolutely! Some have called me the "dancing minister." Some couples have asked me to bring my fiancee to their wedding reception so that we can get some action going on the dance floor. Again, you are under no obligation to invite me (or my fiancee), but if you want me/us to be there to help fill up the dance floor, I would be happy to attend if I have no other obligations at that time.
15) Under what circumstances would you break a contract?
I do not break contracts for any reason. Once we both sign a contract and you pay the deposit, we are locked in.
16) What happens if you're sick and can't officiate our wedding?
I will take whatever medications are necessary and make every effort to be there. If I am truly sick and unable to attend your wedding, I have connections with other officiants and we back each other up. I will do my best to make arrangements with another officiant. In a worst-case scenario, my family knows where I keep my contracts and financial information.