This holiday weekend I had the pleasure of officiating the wedding of Anthony Harbison and Dane Murrell. Working with this couple was a true pleasure from start to finish.
I first met Anthony and Dane when In The Mix Event Group took part in Philadelphia’s first annual Same Sex Marriage Expo in January 2015. When I received a call from them a few weeks later I was excited to hear they had chosen our team to work with them on their upcoming nuptials aboard Philadelphia’s historic Moshulu along the waterfront.
We first worked on their invitations and print. Anthony and Dane are from Pottsville, and they chose to have their wedding in Philly because of their love for the city. The invitations and other print were Philly themed with iconic landmarks such as the Ben Franklin Bridge and LOVE statue being featured. We kept with their red, black, white, and grey theme on all print. After a surf on google Anthony decided to add a white feather to each invitation. They were beautiful and reminded me of the quill feathers that our forefathers used here in Philadelphia. It was a perfect finishing touch to the already beautiful Philly themed invitations. Lastly we took a photo of the couple in front of our Love statue and printed it on a large board for guests to leave messages for the Anthony and Dane. It will be a wonderful reminder of their special day as it hangs in their home.
Finally July 4th is here and it is the day of the wedding. Anthony and Dance have also chosen me to officiate their wedding. The Moshulu was decorated with some of the best flower arrangements I had ever seen. From the ceiling of the reception area hung scarves, umbrellas, and other decor that made the space feel inviting and original. Jake, Mike, and their team on the Moshulu did a wonderful job.
From the ceremony area the view of the Ben Franklin Bridge and Philly skyline were breathtaking. As the ceremony began Anthony was escorted down the aisle by his mother (who insisted I call her Mama) and Dane was accompanied by his children. Before I began Scott, a dear friend of the couple, gave a heartfelt toast and all guests clinked a glass to the grooms to start the ceremony. The way Dane and Anthony looked at each other brought emotions to everyone in attendance. You could clearly see they had waited a long time to make this commitment to each other, and were thrilled they were finally able to do so. As part of their ceremony they chose to pour sand into a glass frame that had been etched with the couples logo and names. As they did Dane’s very talented daughter Nikki sang a beautiful ballad for her father and his husband.
After the ceremony everyone moved to the lower deck for the reception. I was honored when Anthony and Dane asked me to walk in as part of their wedding party. As the DJ started the Golden Girls theme song and called my name I gave my best minister strut. It felt good to know that the couple felt highly of me, so much so they wanted me to be announced as part of their group.
Anthony and Dane were one of the best couples I have had the pleasure to work with. Unfortunately our time has come to an end for now, however I am eager for them to have another large event. I would be honored to work with Anthony and Dane again in their future life as a married couple. With that I send my most sincere well wishes to the newlyweds for a long life of laughs and love together.