ambush weddings

pink graffiti hearts
Love mural, Venice Beach, CA

What is an ambush wedding?

An "ambush wedding" is where the couple and officiant know a wedding is happening, but the guests aren't informed until the event is underway! It's an easy and cost-effective way to add a super-fun twist to getting married, perfect for an elopement or intimate wedding.

They're a natural fit for holiday gatherings where your friends and family are already assembled--Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Eve being the most popular--but we can work with you to create a stealthy, personalized scenario that will thoroughly and delightfully punk your unsuspecting wedding guests.

Have your secret officiant pose as a housing inspector, restaurant manager, houseguest, delivery person, coworker...the possibilities are endless. Ambush weddings reduce expense and fuss for you and your guests, and maximize the laughter and togetherness.

It's the same as a "surprise wedding," right?

Nope! Ambush weddings are not the same as those "surprise weddings" you see on TV where one party to the marriage "surprises" the other with a marriage license and ceremony. "Surprise weddings" are problematic, since by law both parties to the marriage must be fully informed, swear out a marriage license, and provide proper ID and documentation before a wedding ceremony takes place. Surprising your partner with a marriage license and immediate ceremony could be construed as coercion, which puts the legality of the marriage on shaky ground.

I'm sure you won't be surprised to hear that almost every "real" TV wedding involves fakery, and surprise weddings especially so. Because they are legally dodgy and often overturned in court, I won't do surprise weddings.

However, there are other ways to surprise your partner with a wedding without putting your legal status at risk. Contact us for details--your top-secret ceremony plans will be safe with us!