When and how do we sign our Oregon marriage license?

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Here's a question I get asked quite a bit: when and how do you sign the marriage license? I've seen it done a number of ways.

(First though, make sure you go in person to the county office and pick up your marriage license within 3 and 60 days before the wedding! You can start the process online in Multnomah County, but you both still must go in person to pick it up, with valid ID. More about that here.)

You will have given the county clerk $60 and your personal information, and signed your names to a triplicate form. The license is then given to you to wait until the day of the wedding when your witnesses will print their names, your officiant will sign it and add his or her contact information, and make the license legally binding.

There's also a commemorative license. This is the "pretty" certificate that is included along with your marriage license, and you will want to also have your witnesses, officiant, and yourselves sign this too. It's just for looks though, and is NOT proof of legal marriage. (It is fun to get your witnesses and officiant to sign that one too, and to flash it on your honeymoon, in hopes of getting freebies 🙂

So, again, when does all this happen? If you don't mind not having the photographer there, you can cheat a little and get it out of the way by signing everything the night before the wedding. Usually your officiant and witnesses are present at the rehearsal dinner, so this makes things really easy. This is a little unorthodox though, since you are technically now married the day before the wedding. However, it does make for one less thing to worry about on the day of.

The next option is to pre-fill out all the paperwork and witness names, and let the officiant sign on the day of. This way you are still officially executing the document on the actual day of your wedding, but it still cuts down on the paperwork and poring-over-fine-print part.

The final option is still the most traditional; gather your 2 adult witnesses and officiant on the day of the wedding, either right before you walk down the aisle in the dressing room, or right after, and do the form filling and formal signing with your photographer present. Just make sure to decide where in the schedule this will fall, and that the witnesses know, and pick a good location with a table and light where all this can take place. With the triplicate form and the commemorative license, it can amount to about 10-15 minutes of careful paperwork and can take up to 20-25 minutes out of the wedding day schedule.

And that's it! Just make sure that your officiant does MAIL the license back to the county within the following week. That final step ensures that your marriage is recorded by the government and you can have your happily ever after recognized in the eyes of the law as well as your family and friends.

{ Happy St. Patrick’s Day! } Dormae and Brian at Bridal Veil Lakes in the Columbia River Gorge

From Emee: It's so very easy to blog about what's going on around town in the world of Portland weddings — however, I'm making more of an effort to go back and blog our own weddings that we have coordinated and planned in the past, under the tagline { Real Weddings }. Some will be little snippets, some will be full features — but my goal by the end of this year, is for our { Real Weddings } tag to be as helpful to Portland couples as possible, full of as many real venue and wedding ideas, and providing inspiration and information to all.

In honor of St. Patrick's day, today's little glimpse is one of our favorite weddings that we coordinated at Bridal Veil Lakes. This Columbia River Gorge wedding included a Celtic handfasting ceremony to reflect the groom's Irish heritage, AND Filipino traditions to reflect the bride's. TOO AWESOME.

Thank you to Scott McNamara for the photos.

Celtic-handfasting-2Above: Dormae and Brian's Celtic-inspired handfasting.

Read more about Irish wedding traditions over at Green Wedding Shoes.

In the Filipino tradition, the ceremony often involves many extended family members called sponsors, and three important rites are used:

  • An exchange of thirteen coins representing the promise of the couple to support and provide for one another and the family.
  • A veil, historically symbolizing being clothed in the love of Christ, but in non-denominational weddings, more often interpreted as a symbol of the couple's home and safe haven in each other.
  • A cord, wrapped around the couple's shoulders, to symbolize the strong bond between the married couple.

        For Filipino weddings that take place in a church, there is also normally a candle lighting. You can read more about Filipino wedding traditions at MyBarong.com.

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Above: the Filipino veil and cord ceremony.

Below: Officiant Lisa Kristen-Scott is seen here, presiding over the couple's exchange of coins.

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Bridal Veil Lakes, as always, is a gorgeous venue.
We've coordinated tons of weddings there and always love it.

Are you incorporating any cultural traditions in your wedding ceremony? Do share with us in the comments!

Sarah and Bill’s wedding: Baker Cabin Pioneer Church and Wild Bill’s Casino

We were pleased to work again in August with Lenny and Bob of Studio 98, this time for a wedding at Baker Cabin Pioneer Church in Canby, Oregon; and reception following at Wild Bill's Casino in NE Portland.  The ceremony had a traditional country wedding atmosphere, with Rev. Kevin Yell presiding.

While the bride and groom took photos around town, the guests moved on to the Oasis Room at Wild Bill's for a Las Vegas-themed reception and barbecue buffet from Buster's Texas BBQ

Sarah wrote to us afterwards, “My parents thought you did great and they loved how the whole thing reflected my personality, staying true to who I am. I still can't believe how well it turned out.” Congratulations again, to Sarah and Bill!

Also, many thanks to these partners in collaboration: Flowers: Studio Del Fiore, Music: Notes of Celebration, DJ: Wild Bill's in-house, Videography: Solstice Video, Transportation: Lucky Limousine (inbound), bride and groom's classic car (getaway)

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Many thanks to Studio 98 for the images.

Oregon Olive Mill open house – great new wedding and event venue

It’s springtime in Oregon, which means event planner open house season! Our inbox is filled to the brim with invitations from far and wide, enticing us to visit new and new-to-us venues in the city and the country.

This week we visited the Oregon Olive Mill, a division of Red Ridge Farms out in Dayton. (Very close to Dundee).  It’s a really neat site with both outdoor and indoor elements, boasting an olive grove, herb gardens, and locally-pressed olive oils. From what I understand, any licensed caterer can be used. It was lovely to tour the site and taste the the local produce.

Here are a couple of photos of the outdoor ceremony site and indoor hall, followed by a Flickr slideshow.

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Allison & Michael’s wedding at Kruger Farm, photos by Evrim Icoz

Evrim Icoz, a Portland-based photographer, just sent us a few wonderful photos of a wedding we coordinated this past September at Kruger Farm on Sauvie Island.  Here are a couple of our favorites:

View the entire blog post over at Evrim's blog here.

Welcome to Portland Wedding Coordinator – the blog of EJP Events

Thanks for coming. EJP Events is a wedding coordinating and event planning firm based in Portland, Oregon.

The mission of the Portland Wedding Coordinator blog is to provide original content that echoes the philosophy of EJP Events when planning a Portland or Pacific Northwest wedding.  We believe in authenticity, finding value, creating the “wow”, and in making guests happy.  We believe in keeping stress off the wedding couple, wedding party, hosts/family and everyone in general when planning a wedding.  We believe that there doesn’t have to be a bunch of drama when planning a wedding, and that logic and common sense can go hand in hand with creativity and artistry.  We believe that beautiful experiences don’t have to be overly lavish or wasteful.  We believe that there is an important cultural place for the life landmark that is a wedding, and it can be a lovely jumping-off point and statement for everything that is to come for a married couple.  If you agree with our beliefs, and you want your wedding experience to be well-thought-out and mindfully planned, then welcome to our community of readers!

With these points in mind, we plan to:

  • bring you practical advice that will help make planning a wedding easy
  • reveal planning tips and secrets that most people don’t consider
  • bring the idea of a wedding into perspective
  • break down myths and outdated etiquette to help the modern couple
  • share special touches and ideas that can make your Portland or Pacific Northwest wedding special, or which can bring a touch of Portland to your wedding
  • report content that represents an intelligent balance between the impractical “Wedding Porn” and the extremely-dry “bridal education” of other wedding blogs
  • offer advice for getting the most value out of your wedding
  • discuss ideas that emphasize quality, value, and great service

Some things we WON’T try to do:

  • Regurgitate content from other blogs and twitter just to have something to post every day.  Writing original content takes time, and so does running a business.
  • Fawn over celebrity weddings for no reason. Especially those individuals whose celebrated status is, well, questionable.  However, if a wedding is stylish and fits in with our ethos, we won’t overlook it just because it’s also Page Six-worthy!
  • Blindly follow trends and traditions without examining the motivation or history behind them
  • Make you feel bad or left out for not buying the latest, greatest wedding gadget or product or add-on.
  • Finally, we’ll never pump up a product for pay.  Product or vendor reviews on our site will occur independently, without compensation or kickbacks.

Additional site policies: Any items given to us as free samples for review will be disclosed according to the standards of the Federal Trade Commission. We regret we cannot respond to every request for a product review, and items sent to us for review will not be returned unless otherwise arranged for. Should we receive sponsored news or accept advertising, it will clearly marked (for example, our sidebar ads from SixApart and Adify). We reserve the right to attach our affiliate information to any links; however, doing so does not influence what kind of review the product receives.

Please note that the author of all posts and tweets appearing on this site is Emee Pumarega, unless otherwise noted. Co-written and co-edited posts by Lauren Gilbertson are appended with “-LG”. All content originating here is copyright © EJP Events and may not be reproduced without express permission by the site owner. Photography on this site and blog remains the copyright of the original photographer and is believed to be used with the photographer’s permission. If you believe your photo or content appearing on The Portland Wedding Coordinator is in violation of copyright, please notify emee@ejpevents.com and it will be removed immediately.

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