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The Great Escape: Exiting Your Wedding in Style
The ceremony is over, and the happy (now married) couple skips down the aisle. Family and friends cheer them on. They get into that white stretch limo, or horse-drawn carriage, just like thousands of other newlyweds for their first drive as husband and wife. Is this a fairytale ending? Or does it seem a bit clichéd?
You put effort into making your vows unique, and the reception is going to be a flight of imagination. So, what about that ride from the vows to the wows? There’s no reason why your first ride shouldn’t reflect your personalities. The only limits are set by your budget and your imaginations (and your city’s street regulations, so be sure to check the laws and permitting requirements before driving off!)
Having a beach wedding? Why trudge up the sand to the parking lot when you can take off on a jet ski? As the ceremony concludes, have a friend or two drive the jet skis right up to the newlyweds. Toss the veil and climb aboard. Roar off into the sunset. Perhaps you can attract a dolphin or two as bridal escorts.
A vintage car (or even a classic) makes a classy statement that your marriage is a lasting one. Owners love to showcase their restored beauties, so you might be able to talk someone into renting theirs for the day. If you have a friend with a vintage automobile, ask him or her to show the car off for the day, and you can lend it some of your good “wedding Karma”.
Ice Cream Truck
Rent an ice cream truck for an hour or two. You’ll have to bargain with the truck owner, but if you’re getting married during a slow sales time (like a cold or cloudy day), he or she might cut you a bargain. Turn tradition on its head by throwing rice to your guests… in the form of delicious “rice cream” (or regular ice cream treats for the unadventurous). Drive off to the strains of “Here Comes the Bride” on the truck loudspeakers. You might even sell a few cones along the way.
Hire a city bus and decorate it up to the limits with balloons, streamers, and large painted signs. Most cities are willing to rent buses for special occasions, although the cost will vary by location. You can also rent independent charter buses and party buses. One perk of this approach is that you can take the entire wedding party with you.
A Bicycle Built for Two
A bicycle built for two is a romantic and fun way to ride to the reception (assuming it isn’t rush hour, too cold, or too hot). Be certain to keep your dress out of the spokes–a few carefully placed clips should do the trick.
Unique City Vehicles
Many cities have unique vehicles in their garages, which can be hired for events. For example, San Francisco and a number of other cities have a few “cable cars” on wheels. This can be a wonderfully fun way to travel. Check out privately-owned unusual vehicles in your area by posting on Internet forums, as well.
Does your city sponsor parades? Are there any floats you can rent? All you need is a friend and a pickup truck to slowly pull the float, and you and your beloved can drive off on a giant swan and wave-like beauty queens (and kings).
Lead the Band
Hire a high school marching band to wait outside until the ceremony is over. Then you and your spouse can grab the lead and march off to the reception. This works best if the band can somehow remain hidden until the key moment.
A Motorcycle Escort
If you ride motorcycles and are a member of a bike social club (either an official one like the Harley Owner’s Group or an informal riding group), how about a motorcycle escort? As an alternative, many police and sheriff’s departments will allow riding officers to take their bikes home, and use them for moonlighting jobs. A black sedan, with blacked-out windows and a two or three motorcycle escort, is super-impressive. If you ask nicely, you may even get lights and sirens (but probably not as the cars are moving, for safety reasons).
These are just a few alternatives to the limo and carriage options. Be sure to keep your getaway a surprise for your guests, but alert your photographer well ahead of time. These are moments you and your loved ones will want to revisit.
Today’s weddings have thrown out the old rule books; the time for sober tradition ended when you said, “I do.” Your first ride together is a promise of a fun future, so let your imaginations run wild. And if you always wanted a white limo, then be sure to get one. There’s nothing wrong with that, either.
Laissez les bons temps rouler! (Let the good times roll!)