Couple Says 'I Do' on NYC Sidewalk Amid Coronavirus Lockdown
"The most perfectly New York moment amidst a crazy time."
In a time of social distancing, and all pre-planned events being canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, a New York City couple decided to take their nuptials outdoors — on a Manhattan sidewalk.
Reilly Jennings and Amanda Wheeler said, "I do" in an impromptu ceremony over the weekend when their original plans were interrupted by New York’s coronavirus shutdown.
"We were walking out the door to get hitched at the courthouse when the mayor announced the immediate closure of the marriage bureau," Jennings explained on Instagram.
After a few desperate and confused hours, a friend reached out, saying he was ordained and could marry the couple that day, March 20. They walked to his apartment in upper Manhattan and stood beneath his fourth-floor window to exchange their vows.
Friends and fellow New Yorkers alike witnessed the ceremony from a social distance of at least six feet or windows of cars and apartments. The officiant read a passage from Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s “Love in the Time of Cholera,” and each "I do," was met with cheers from friends, neighbors and strangers.
One on-looker posted a photo of the impromptu ceremony and called it "the most incredible thing."
“Amidst the uncertainty and despair we all feel right now, marrying the love of my life in the most NYC moment was perfect,” Jennings wrote on Instagram.
They were not the only NYC couple to get married in a unique manner during the coronavirus outbreak, the New York Post reported. After the marriage bureau closed, a criminal judge from the courthouse next door to the bureau agreed to officiate two wedding ceremonies. Couples played up the pandemic theme. One wore latex gloves as they held hands and “bumped elbows” before they kissed and another couple wore N-95 masks as they exchanged vows.