A surprise wedding at Minnippi Parklands

After many years and two lovely children, Erin and Kelvin couldn’t wait to tie the knot and become husband and wife.

They envisaged a relaxed and stress-free celebration and decided that having a surprise wedding would be the perfect way to celebrate with those close to them, so one Sunday afternoon they planned a family BBQ, asking guests to arrive at 1pm sharp.

On arrival, Erin was nowhere to be seen, as friends and family mingled, Kelvin ducked off, then re-emerged dressed sharply in a very smart suit with a boutonniere to boot! Guests were momentarily miffed as to why he was dressed so smart for a Sunday afternoon BBQ, which prompted him to share the exciting news “SURPRISE – We’re getting married”

Guests then joined Kelvin as they headed to a favourite local park of their’s; Minnippi Parklands in Carina, where white americana chairs were set up between two tall trees, completely surrounded by greenery.

The couples daughter, followed by the radiant bride and her father made their way down the aisle, the guests were in awe, still taking in that they were actually at a wedding!

Following a simple and happy wedding ceremony at Minnippi Parklands with their son as the official ring bearer, they were announced as husband and wife to the cheers of their surprised guests, before having bridal and family photos with their photographer from Edge Photography GC.

Thank you Erin and Kelvin for the 5 star review and for sharing your day and these photos of your wedding at Minnippi Parklands with me:

“Jamie, Thank you again for helping our wedding day be so special, you did such an amazing job and we were so happy with our choice!”

If you enjoyed hearing about this surprise wedding and are looking for a Celebrant for your special day, Brisbane Celebrant Jamie Eastgate would love to hear from you. Contact Jamie now to confirm availability for your special day

Surprise Gay Wedding

Oh how I loved working with these two gorgeous girls in planning their surprise gay wedding.

Guests thought they were attending a surprise 30th birthday for one of the girls, only to discover the surprise was on them and they were actually about to witness a wedding!
The two brides went dress shopping separately and got ready separately as per wedding tradition so they both got to take in that WOW moment as their eyes met at opposite ends of the aisle.
This same sex wedding took place in the function space at the Foxy Bean in Woolloongabba which was simply perfect.

What an amazing surprise for all those present and such a special wedding ♡Congratulations to the new Mrs & Mrs!

Cara Hodge – Brisbane City Celebrants

If you enjoyed this post and looking for a Celebrant that is passionate about pulling off the ultimate surprise wedding and can fit in inconspicuously with your guests if need be, before the surprise is revealed, or perhaps you are looking for a Brisbane Celebrant that truly believes in marriage equality, Brisbane City Celebrants would love to hear from you. Contact Brisbane City Celebrants now to confirm availability for your special day.


Surprise wedding at 66 on Ernest in Southbank

With Celebrant Jamie Eastgate of Brisbane City Celebrants

I loved having such an integral role in pulling off this surprise wedding at 66 on Ernest in Southbank.

Nikky Elizabeth Photographer was on hand to capture these magical moments when half way through the fun joint birthday party of the bride and groom, the secret room was revealed, the music played and to everyone’s surprise the birthday girl had transformed in to a glowing bride making her way down the aisle to her waiting groom.

There is something very special about surprise weddings, as the room of loved ones simultaneously fills with gasps, cheers and elation when they realise that to their surprise, they are actually about to witness a wedding!

66 on Ernest surprise wedding6

Nikky Elizabeth Photographer was kind enough to surprise me by sending these photos through accompanied by the following kind words “We all commented on how good you were as a Celebrant”.

Oh shucks, thank you Nikky. It really is so important for all the bride and grooms wedding suppliers to work well together and I am all about working as a team with photographers, DJ’s and venue staff.

I am always as accommodating as I can be and will always step to the side and well out of the way when it comes to the bride and grooms first kiss as husband and wife, so you will never catch me photo bombing this once in a lifetime shot.

If you enjoyed hearing about this  surprise wedding ceremony and are looking for a Celebrant for your speial day, Jamie would love to hear from you. Contact Brisbane City Celebrants for more information and to confirm availability for your special day.

A surprise Brisbane wedding at Fix Restaurant

With Celebrant Cara Hodge of Brisbane City Celebrants

Bride and Groom: Justine and Andrew

Wedding Date: 12th May 2013

Wedding Ceremony and Reception Location: Fix Restaurant and Bar (Port Office Hotel)

Tell us about your Ceremony and Reception:

When we thought about how we wanted to get married, we kept coming back to just wanting a big party with all our family and friends; so to do that, we had an engagement party/ surprise wedding.

We wanted it to feel like a party from start to end, only stopping for a short meaningful ceremony in the middle. Our engagement party was a black and white cocktail theme with a splash of colour. I (the bride) started the night in a black dress and 90 minutes in, I snuck away to change in to my knee length white wedding dress, wearing a pair of electric blue pumps with both dresses. While I was out of the room my then fiance mingled with the crowd, there were enough people there it was assumed I was just off talking to someone else, plus allowing the guests 2 hours until the actual ceremony gave ample time for the late comers to arrive in time for the big surprise.

At 6pm the Wedding Coordinator (who also happens to be my sister) gathered everyone together for the ‘speeches’ to start and asked where I was, but really this was just code for the very few in the know that the ceremony was about to begin. The band started playing Pachelbel’s Canon, I appeared from a door at the back of the room and the guests were surprised and delighted to see the engagement party had just become a wedding. There were lots of gasps, cheers, clapping and a flourish of tears. The reaction was better than we had ever imagined and quite unlike the usual response you normally get to a bride walking down the aisle.

Our actual ceremony would have been around 10 minutes from start to finish, but in that time we included our unique meeting story, some meaningful vows (with a couple of humorous ones thrown in), exchanged the rings, and of course included all the required legal wording. To us, it was just perfect!

Engagement party turned surprise wedding with Brisbane Celebrant Ciara Hodge

Engagement party turned surprise wedding with Brisbane Celebrant Cara Hodge

What we loved:

The venue was set up superbly, the existing decor is dark leather and wood, and the elegance was enhanced by little lantern lighting placed throughout the venue. To top it off the centre piece of the room was an amazing 3m tall, cherry blossom LED tree – it was definitely a talking point, and a perfect backdrop to the ceremony.

Fix Restaurant surprise wedding ceremony with Brisbane Celebrant Ciara Hodge

Fix Restaurant surprise wedding ceremony with Brisbane Celebrant Ciara Hodge

We also loved the laid back feel a surprise wedding had, everyone was having fun from the moment they walked through the door – only helped by the amazing band. We both really loved having kids there too, they entertained themselves for a lot of the night, at one stage the band gave them instruments and had them involved in one or two songs – it was fantastic.  But overall my most favourite part was seeing everyones reaction to the ‘big surprise’. I will never forget that!

The magical moment Justine and Andrews Fix Restaurant surprise wedding was unveiled.

The magical moment Justine and Andrews Fix Restaurant surprise Brisbane wedding was unveiled.

Describe your experience with Cara from Brisbane City Celebrants:

As mentioned earlier my sister is a Wedding Coordinator, so she has seen a LOT of Celebrants in action, so I knew the moment she recommended Cara to be my Celebrant, that she was going to be fantastic.

I was always imperative from the start that we thought Cara could successfully help us ‘pull off’ the surprise component – and she was really an integral part. She gave us guidance from start to end, but also allowed flexibility for us to put our own touches in to the ceremony.

Cara also allowed us to prepare everything in our own time, so we never felt any unnecessary pressure. It really was an easy, stress free experience – and for that we are very grateful!

Tell us about any wedding suppliers that you were impressed with and why:

The following suppliers were exceptional:

– Emma Stephenson at The Port Office Hotel was outstanding even though we are sisters she treated me as she would any client, she was thorough and professional. There was nothing that was not thought of, planned, or executed perfectly. The staff serving us on the night also need to be congratulated.

–  Benjam (band) if you ever wanted the most outstanding wedding band in Brisbane these guys are it. They add to, and create the perfect atmosphere. You can choose between having 1, 2 or 3 band members for differing prices, but we went the whole 3, and it was outstanding. You can indicate the kind of music you want, but apart from choosing the ‘walking down the aisle’ song and the ‘bridal waltz’, we left the rest up to them, they really knew what they were doing. The bridal waltz song we wanted wasn’t very mainstream, but they happily learnt it and executed it fantastically.

– LED Tree Hire by Creative Loop, hiring the LED tree helped us add that point of difference to our wedding. The amazing cherry blossom tree stood 3m tall and really became the centre piece of the room. I am still hearing really positive comments about how amazing it was. They came in to set it up and took it away at the end of the night, so all we had to do was enjoy it’s beauty.

– and of course Brisbane City Celebrants Cara Hodge, she was just amazing.

The newlyweds enjoying a moment following their seriously awesome and super sweet Fix Restaurant surprise wedding.

The newlyweds enjoying a moment following their seriously awesome and super sweet Fix Restaurant surprise wedding.

Your advice to bride and grooms to be:

Our advice is…… a wedding doesn’t have to be a long, drawn out, overly expensive, or stressful affair. If you choose professional suppliers, they will take care of all the stuff that bogs some couples down. We were the hosts of the engagement party/ surprise wedding, but we just showed up and enjoyed it like the rest of our guests. Although we always knew we were going to have a surprise wedding, we only gave ourselves 8 weeks to prepare, but to be honest over 90% of it was organised in less than 4 days.

We would highly recommend a surprise wedding too, there were no preconceived ideas of what should happen, we had no pushy opinions, we saved quite a lot of money and we didn’t need to organise things that often get forgotten e.g. table arrangements, what colour the napkins are, bonbonnieres etc.

We just wish we could do it all again!

Wedding at The Port Office with Brisbane Celebrant Ciara Hodge

Surprise Wedding at Fix Restaurant with Brisbane Celebrant Cara Hodge.

Images courtesy of Max Loxton Photography.

If you enjoyed hearing about this surprise Brisbane wedding ceremony and are looking for a Celebrant for your Brisbane wedding, Cara would love to hear from you. Contact Brisbane City Celebrants for more information and to confirm availability for your special day.

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Surprise Vow Renewal Ceremony as featured on Polka Dot Bride

With Celebrant Cara Hodge of Brisbane City Celebrants

I am so excited to share this story of a sweet surprise vow renewal ceremony – with a twist!

The twist being that it wasn’t the guests that were surprised it was the bride and groom who had absolutely no idea that their photo shoot was about to turn in to a vow renewal ceremony which not long after featured on the fabulous Polka Dot Bride blog.

Brisbane City Celebrants featured on Polka Dot Bride

Brisbane City Celebrants featured on Polka Dot Bride

I first heard from Melissa when she contacted me via my Facebook page where she inquired in to my availability to be their Celebrant for their wedding in the garden gazebo at the Glen Hotel.

I excitedly confirmed my availability and a few days later we met at a local coffee shop where we discussed the kind of wedding that would perfectly reflect them as a couple and as a family as they have 3 beautiful daughters together.

I love it when couples are eager to involve their children in their wedding day, there are many different ways to involve children of all different ages in weddings. I discussed various ideas with Melissa and Aaron and one of my ideas that they loved was the ‘rings blessing’ where each daughter would place a kiss on the wedding rings before they were exchanged to give their blessing to their mum and dads marriage.

Before we knew it their wedding day had arrived, the romantic gazebo at the Glen Hotel set amongst a purpose built ceremony garden set the scene for their special day. Rain clouds were lingering and I recall the Events Manager asking Aaron to make the final call of if the ceremony should proceed to take place outside, or be relocated indoors. Aarons thoughts were immediately with his bride and he responded by saying he wanted Melissa to have the ceremony she has been dreaming of, so he instructed the ceremony to proceed in the ceremony gardens as planned.

The ceremony flowed perfectly, there wasn’t a drop of rain and the super cute flower girls looked divine and completed their roles of blessing the wedding rings with perfection!

While Melissa and Aaron enjoyed a fantastic wedding day, when it came to collecting the wedding photos they were shocked to find out their photographer seemed to have significantly increased the price of their package from what was initially agreed, perhaps this was covered in the small print of their contract, I’m not sure but either way the amount their photographer was demanding was simply out of their reach and simply just not do-able for them meaning the couple ended up with no professional wedding photos, not even a sneak peek!

This also meant they didn’t have professional photos of their family to treasure from this special day.

Myself and Melissa stayed in touch via Facebook and when her 1st wedding anniversary came and went she had no wedding photos to share on her page, it was then that she explained to me what had happened and how upset she was not to have any wedding photos.

While you only have 1 wedding day and they can never get that day back, my mind raced and I contacted a reputable photographer that both myself and Jamie had worked with on a number of occasions, Deb from Boots Photography, and also a family member Anne who runs the Rose Room High Tea Café in Noosaville to share Melissas story and see on the off chance if they would be interested in doing a shoot with Melissa and her family.

The reason Anne came to mind to contact was because Melissa has a love and passion for vintage and retro, as does Anne with every item you find on the table at her High Tea café being carefully selected and from a former era.

Beside themselves with excitement I received immediate responses from both Anne and Deb they had been planning to do a styled shoot with Anne’s beautiful china and vintage furnishings and they were only too happy to work the shoot around Melissa and Aaron, they Deb had the brainwave – why not surprise them with a vow renewal on the day to make the day that bit extra special!

Melissa and Aarons Surprise Vow Renewal Ceremony

Melissa and Aaron’s Surprise Vow Renewal Ceremony

Deb did a fantastic job enlisting a team of wedding professionals who were kind enough to donate their time and services to put this shoot together, while they were all in on the surprise vow renewal ceremony we had to keep it all super secret from our unsuspecting bride and groom.

The couple were thrilled to receive such stunning professional images by Deb of Boots Photography

The couple were thrilled to receive such stunning professional images by Boots Photography

Usually our couples have a huge amount of input in to their ceremonies and we always get their approval on the final ceremony before their special day. However under these circumstances I had to create the ceremony without the couples sign off, so I wrote their vows for them and couldn’t resist including their children with a rings blessing just like on their wedding day!

The day arrived and the vendors were buzzing around busily passionately creating their own special part of the day.

The couple had no idea their photo shoot was about to turn in to a surprise vow renewal ceremony.

The couple had no idea their photo shoot was about to turn in to a surprise vow renewal ceremony.

The day commenced with Deb shooting various backdrops with the couple, then right on cue she led the couple over to the ceremony set up where she continued to shoot, suppliers gathered around the signal was given and a track from one of Melissas favourite bands the Foo Fighters played.

Surprise Vow Renewal Ceremony with Brisbane Celebrant Ciara Hodge

Surprise Vow Renewal Ceremony with Brisbane Celebrant Cara Hodge

I surfaced from the acreage property dressed appropriately in a vintage style dress and with Melissa and Aaron already in their places under the lace draped wedding arch, I was the one to walk down the aisle. It wasn’t until the music faded out and I whipped out my ceremony folder and said “SURPRISE” that Melissa and Aaron realised what was about to happen, they responded ‘Are we getting married again?’ hehe! Love them!

I commenced the ceremony requesting their permission to renew their vows to which they both happily agreed. The vow renewal ceremony was so much fun for everyone present, the girls kissed their wedding bands just like on the wedding day and as I pronounced them husband and wife for the second time, they shared a kiss while Aaron spontaneously threw his hat in the air as everyone roared with laughter and Deb captured the moment.

The couples children kissing the wedding bands to signify their blessing of the marriage...for the second time!

The couples children kissing the wedding bands to signify their blessing of the marriage…for the second time!

Surprise Vow Renewal Ceremony when the surprise was on the couple! with Ciara Hodge, Brisbane Celebrant

Surprise Vow Renewal Ceremony when the surprise was on the couple! with Cara Hodge, Brisbane Celebrant

We all enjoyed tasty treats whipped up by the resident Chef Jamie and a glass of celebratory champagne, except for Deb who continued to shoot the now re-married couple making the most of the beautiful afternoon sunset.

The ceremony was promptly snapped up and featured on the Polka Dot Bride blog which was a lovely way for all the deserving suppliers to receive recognition for coming together and giving Melissa, Aaron and their family not just a day to remember but this time beautiful photos to treasure.

The kind wedding vendors that made special vow renewal ceremony happen

Congratulations to the happy couple just married... again!

Congratulations to the happy couple just married… again!

If you enjoyed hearing about this surprise vow renewal ceremony and are looking for a Celebrant for your Brisbane wedding or vow renewal ceremony, Cara would love to hear from you. Contact Brisbane City Celebrants for more information and to confirm availability for your special day.

A Big surprise Southbank Brisbane wedding

With Celebrant Jamie Eastgate of Brisbane City Celebrants

A Big surprise Southbank Brisbane wedding at Champ Kitchen and Bar

I am so excited to share this sweet little surprise wedding that I performed at Champs Kitchen and Bar in Southbank.

The guests who arrived at the venue in Southbank, believed they were attending a birthday celebrations. After carefully sneaking my PA in and setting it up behind a tall plant, the groom got the attention of everyone in the room and introduced me as the Celebrant and announced they are actually here to attend a wedding! 

The room filled with gasps, applause and cheers!

The surprises didn’t stop there though, to my surprise good friends of the couple, Kevin Rudd and his wife were guests in attendance at this surprise wedding!

Surprise Wedding with Jamie Eastgate of Brisbane City Celebrants at Champ Kitchen and Bar

Surprise Wedding with Jamie Eastgate of Brisbane City Celebrants at Champ Kitchen and Bar

The happy couple and their excited guests proceeded to enjoy canapés and drinks at the venue and were all shouted a ride on the wheel of Brisbane which is located just in from of the restaurant  What a unique and happy way to celebrate!

I was so thrilled to receive such wonderful feedback from both the bride and groom.

Southbank Brisbane Wedding Celebrant Testiimonial

Southbank Brisbane Wedding Celebrant Testimonial for Celebrant Jamie Eastgate

Thank you to the new Mr and Mrs for choosing Brisbane City Celebrants for your wedding in Southbank and also for your lovely feedback.

If you are looking for a Celebrant for your surprise wedding in Brisbane, that is experienced and discreet while blending in perfectly with your guests to ensure the surprise remains a surprise, Brisbane City Celebrants would love to hear from you, please feel free to contact us.

In Love with the SURPRISE wedding

With Celebrant Cara Hodge of Brisbane City Celebrants

This surprise wedding was such a success and full of so much happiness, excitement and emotion I felt so  inspired to jump on the blog and tell you about the exciting and fun surprise wedding I performed. I have intentionally included lots of little details to take in to consideration for anyone planning a surprise wedding.

Before I go on to tell you about the engagement party come surprise wedding that I performed, I have summarised what I believe are some of the key points that enabled this couples surprise wedding to be a success:

  • The couple sent engagement party invitations to all their guests which stated the time as ‘4pm sharp’ unbeknown to the guests the secret ceremony was scheduled to commence at 6pm, this gave a generous 2hr time slot to allow for any guests that may have been running late, and prevented any guests from missing the ceremony.
  • The couple kept the surprise very close. Only a very small select few people were ‘let in’ on the secret, it was even a surprise to the brides father who was told by the bride just minutes before the wedding took place. The less people you tell about a ‘surprise’ wedding, the more impact the surprise will have.
  • The outfit change. The couples engagement party theme was ‘Black and White with a splash of colour’ so the room was filled with a sea of black and white with some cheerful bright colours thrown in to the mix, the fiancé (or secretly the groom) wore black with a little electric blue on the pocket and the fiancée (or secretly the bride) wore a black cocktail dress teamed with a fabulous pair of electric blue pumps, which would have thrown any suspecting guests off the scent. Just before the ceremony was scheduled to start she slipped out the back to staff quarters and changed in to a gorgeous white number, but more on that later…..
  • Having the brides sister Emma, who happens to be the amazingly organised Wedding and Events Manager at the Port Office/ Fix Restaurant & Wine Bar on hand was also a huge asset and enabled the couple to pull off the surprise with military precision. While not everyone has their very own ‘Emma’ or Wedding Coordinator on hand, perhaps you know of someone that works in the wedding industry or is simply super organised and attentive to detail that you could enlist to help coordinate the surprise ceremony.
  • Having the vendors on board: As the Celebrant I slotted in well as a guest, the photographers were coworkers from the real estate agents where the groom works so as friends of the couple no one thought twice about them being there capturing images of their ‘engagement party’, and the band ‘Benjam’ executed their role to a T, they delivered the arrival of the bride song ‘Pachelbel’s Canon’ immaculately and right on cue. After the signing took place and the photographers and guests had their photos of the happy couple with their marriage certificate, just one glance and a little nod from me to Benjam at the other side of the room and they instantly faded out their song ready for me to declare the happy couple husband and wife for the very first time.
  • Last but certainly not least the wonderful connection and amount of love between the bride and groom was so incredible that their happiness and the happiness of everyone present for them, lit up the room creating an incredible atmosphere that I wish I could have bottled a little and taken it with me, not that I would know what to do with it!

Justine and Andrews Surprise Wedding at Fix Restaurant & Wine Bar, Brisbane City

Justine is super lucky to have Brisbane’s amazing award winning Wedding and Functions Manager, Emma as her sister. Emma was the Wedding Coordinator at Mt Ommaney Hotel for many years and to say she was loved by all her brides was an understatement, she won many bridal industry awards and not surprisingly when the Wedding and Functions Coordinator role arose at the Port Office Hotel, they snapped Emma up and in my opinion they scored well!

A couple of months ago Emma got in touch with me to see if I was available to perform her sisters wedding, I was extremely flattered that of the hundreds of Celebrants Emma has seen in action she thought of me for her sisters surprise wedding, I was thrilled that I was available and excited about being ‘in’ on the surprise.

Shortly after I met with Justine and Andrew, we completed the legal paperwork, I cited the necessary ID and we proceeded to discuss the kind of ceremony they would like which was simple and meaningful, not too long and light hearted with a little humour. They shared their amazing ‘chance meeting’ story with me and it felt so significant to their relationship I encouraged them to include this in their ceremony (which to the enjoyment of their guests I’m glad to report they did!).

We also talked about how we would pull off the surprise, as a Celebrant at a surprise wedding you need to have an alias, so we agreed I would pose as a co-worker of Emma’s if anyone asked (which thankfully for me they didn’t).

Shortly after we met I emailed the first draft of their customised ceremony to them, they decided to review this over a glass or 2 of wine during a weekend away in Melbourne, clearly the fresh Melbourne air and Sauvignon worked a treat as the ceremony that came back to me included such a brilliantly written story of how they met, their story is both funny and sweet. They also decided to write their own vows and did an equally fantastic job with this, they wrote 3 vows each to say to each other in turn. In line with their ceremony, their vows were also sweet, meaningful and funny!

Before we knew it their wedding day was here! Or their engagement party day as their guests believed. for a Celebrant a surprise wedding is super exciting, being one of the select few in on the surprise means keeping the secret close and also being really careful to keep the wedding documents (which would normally be neatly placed on a signing table), hidden well away. Luckily for me I didn’t have the task of sneaking my PA system in as the seriously awesome band ‘BenJam’ kindly let me use their cordless mic and I was super spoilt to have them on hand to adjust my volume and sound if necessary.

I arrived at the Port Office and got a great car park just outside, I didn’t want to arrive too early so I read through the ceremony a couple of times in the car before heading in. As soon as I walked through the door the wonderful atmosphere that I can only describe as ‘happiness’ hit me. Justine and Andrew are 2 really lovely people (with a cheeky sense of humour) that have chosen to have a surprise wedding as they simply want to be married. It is no surprise to me that 2 lovely people would be surrounded by such a vibrant, high spirited group of family and friends. Andrew spotted me as soon as I walked through the door, he was cheerful and surprisingly very relaxed for a groom to be (yes grooms get nervous too!)

He called Justine over and we greeted each other as if I was a guest, I was conscious not to say too much and we briefly spoke almost in code as very few people knew what was about to happen, and I had no idea who did or didn’t know. Emma popped up and being the super organised person she is (she uses differently terminology but I won’t go there!) she kept me posted on how the surprise was going to be executed and I joined her husband and the very few friends that were ‘in the know’ at a cocktail table.

Fix Restaurant and Wine Bar looked breath taking, with an amazing LED tree provided by Creative Loop which provided a unique glowing back drop for the ceremony. I introduced myself to the band ‘Benjam’ I had spoken to Benjam a couple of days prior to confirm microphone arrangements and they were very accommodating. I could instantly see he was equally as excited about the upcoming surprise as I was and he had every little detail covered.

A minute before the ceremony was set to start, Emma got on the microphone and introduced herself. She stated that speeches were about to commence.

Andrew casually wondered up and said “Do you need me up here?”

Emma replied “Yeah, I guess it’s your engagement party, so I guess you’ll be doing a speech too”

Then came the cue a select few of us were waiting for from Emma “Where’s Justine? Has anyone seen Justine?”

Right on cue the band played Pachelbel’s Canon, the doors at the back of room flew open and Justine who had changed from a black cocktail dress in to a cute white knee length sleeveless white dress, walked through the door on her Dads arm. The most amazing simultaneous gasp of over 100 guests filled the room. I got goose bumps and I’m pretty sure Andrew did too, perhaps along with a little nerves finally kicking in.

As Justine walked down the aisle towards her groom their eyes locked and smiles spread across their faces. In keeping with the surprise Justine only told her father what was about to happen, a few minutes before the ceremony took place, beaming with happiness when they reached where Andrew was stood, he gave his daughter and her groom to be a group hug. Justine handed the single long stem red rose she was holding to her father then he stepped to the side.

The music faded out and I introduced myself as a Registered Civil Marriage Celebrant, I then caught Justines fathers eye and asked “who gives this woman to be married to this man” proudly smiling (and still taking in what was actually happening), he replied “from a very surprised father, I do”.

The ceremony proceeded and the guests roared with laughter at the funny story of how Justine and Andrew met. They exchanged the sweet and funny vows they had written for each other and following the mandatory legal wording, I announced them as husband and wife to which the applause and cheers of their 100 guests filled the room!

I stepped to the side out of shot and they shared their first kiss as husband and wife while what looked like a sea of paparazzi of guests on the front row captured the moment.

I called the witnesses over to sign the marriage certificates, once these had all been signed I leaned over to the newlyweds and excitedly said “You’re Married!” to which Andrew fist pumped the air their witnesses cheered and they shared a celebratory kiss. After introducing them as Mr & Mrs to their guests, the room filled with cheering and applause once again (giving me goose bumps again!) and their ecstatically happy and super surprised guests proceeded to congratulate them.

The night was a huge success, they went from being engaged to being married and they succeeded to keep the surprise wedding a surprise and the atmosphere was that of a true celebration. I feel so privileged to have had the opportunity to be a part of this special day and with the amount of love between Justine and Andrew I know they have such a wonderful future ahead of them.

If you enjoyed hearing about this exciting surprise wedding ceremony and are looking for a Celebrant for your Brisbane wedding, Cara would love to hear from you. Contact Brisbane City Celebrants for more information and to confirm availability for your special day.