We Americans are notorious about our sense of geography. Many of us can name all of our states, but are hamstrung when it comes to knowing where other cities or countries are. That includes our fair neighbor to the north — Canada.
Though I love to tout my connection to my relatives in Canada (they live in Calgary and one of them writes for Music Fodder on our own Fodder Network!), I, too, am guilty of having a poor sense of geography. Yes, that’s right: I am unable to name all Canadian provinces by heart.
Why does this matter on a blog which features wedding news and tips for the GLBT community, you ask?
Because hordes of us are trying to figure out how to get to Canada to enjoy a legal gay wedding ceremony!
You may have already read our blog about getting married in Toronto, and perhaps you’ve even read HRC’s overview about where in Canada one can pursue a marriage license. Either way, it’s still worth a quick reveiew of Canada and its wonderful provinces to explore where the best place would be for you to pursue legal recognition of your relationship, if you are so inclined.
Since we’ve done a little something on Ontario (yes, that’s where Toronto is located), let’s take a look at a lesser known province to the lower 48: Prince Edward Island, courtesy of a new friend of ours, Sue Astley of Avant-garde Weddings.
Q: Can gays and lesbians get married on Prince Edward Island?
A: Prince Edward Island came on board in August 2005. In November, the Provincial Government pushed through our request for Independent Marriage Commissioners and by the Spring of 2006 we will have a good choice of independent people to call on to conduct ceremonies anywhere on the Island
Q: Is it easy to travel to Prince Edward Island?
Destination Weddings are the trend of the last few years. Prince Edward Island is a perfect place to celebrate a joyful union. As Canada’s sandy jewel in the Atlantic, Prince Edward Island is connected to Nova Scotia seasonally by car ferry, and to New Brunswick year round via the magnificent Confederation Bridge. We have white sand beaches and red clay cliffs stretching from one end of our island to another. The scenery makes for a superb setting for weddings, whether it is just the couple with their toes in the sand or larger tented weddings and receptions. The Island offers urban centers and tiny country villages, live theatre, elegant dining, historic walking tours, and scenic trails, There is something for everyone here.
Q: How does this effect your business as a wedding planner?
A: As an independent event planner, my company Avant-garde Group, has always had the view that all clients are to receive ‘the ultimate’ in customer service for all events. I am happy to say that my colleagues in the wedding industry here on PEI hold the same view. It’s exciting to think that we are on front line of same sex marriage and can do exactly what our clients want. In other words, if there are trends, traditions, styles to set, I’m ready to set them! We can set the bar as high as we like.
Thanks, Sue! We appreciate your sharing a few thoughts on a Canadian destination many couples may not have considered!
Editor’s note: PEI is another destination with high season and low season fluctuations. July through September are the most comfortable months, given it’s northern latitude. A winter celebration would also be a treat, but only for those who love a true winter’s day, brief as it may be on PEI. So, as always, when you are considering a destination for your wedding, make sure that you ask a lot of questions about the weather, daylight, and cost factors during the time of year for which you are planning, and, if possible, go to that location and pay a personal visit at that time of year for a better sense of what the season will hold in store for your wedding!