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medieval wedding
Daryl and Samantha at the altar the wedding of
Lady Samantha Bradley
Sir Daryl Rolando,

June twenty-third,
two thousand and one

seating for the wedding

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Daryl is a co-owner of Warrior Quest International [ ] where he teaches bushijutsu and swordsmanship. I met him when we'd worked on a movie together: besides working as an actor, he's also worked behind the set as a fight choreographer.

Samantha and Daryl at the Viking exhibit

Samantha works for the American Humane Association, and among other things, she's one of the people who go into disaster areas (rather than fleeing from them) to rescue pets and other trapped animals.

... and, so, when silver tubes began appearing in mailboxes around town, each protecting a scroll inviting its recipient to a wedding to be held in a secluded location some hours to the south, you could figure that this was not to be just an ordinary ceremony.

norman and justin

From far and away they came, friends and family of Samantha and Daryl, to witness their wedding, held at Samantha's brother's estate in southern Colorado.

With more than a hundred and thirty guests, most of them in their finest period attire, it was like a smaller version of the Renaissance Festival, complete with events and activities scheduled throughout the day.

Mark Grove and Daryl Rolando
the mighty Alex Wilder defeats his car

Hosting such an event off the beaten path (or, rather, the paved one) can have its drawbacks, however, and several cars experienced difficulty along the way. Alex's petroleum-fueld chariot suffered the worst damage, but he was okay, just a little muddier than ushers usually are for weddings. (He got most of the dirt and mud out of his costume in time, though it took two trips through the washing machine to do it.)

No matter how cool everybody else's costume was, I think I still get the prize for the heaviest outfit, being decked out in this floor-length ceremonial chainmail robe. it's a little like wearing a really big tea strainer

Daryl and Samantha drink from the wedding chalice

Daryl and Samantha had blocked out and written the whole ceremony, embracing traditions drawn from several cultures and combining them into a cohesive ceremony.

Despite the complexity (and the number of props) everything came off without a, except for Samantha and Daryl, who did get hitched.

the sword in the cake

(As you can see; you don't think we'd let them cut the cake unless they'd finished all of their ceremony first?)

But once the ceremony was complete and the official photos were taken, it was on to the traditional tests of skill and valor, such as the pinata joust.

I know it seems like a cop-out, but I did doff my armor for the event--even if it seems like a suit of armor ought to be a suitable thing to wear when jousting, you really need a steed that's up to carrying the weight of the jouster and the armor. That means something along the lines of a clydesdale or percheron, not a Huffy.
broadword versus pinata

Well, armor or no armor, my swing at the pinata left it nearly unscathed. Sara, on the other hand, was at least able to knock her newspaper nemesis to the ground.

and Sara, armed with the lance, takes it down

archery contest

Norman Dehm finally destroyed the pugnacious pinata with one mighty stroke of a claymore; by comparison, the archery competition was much more sedate. (So much so that I'm not sure at the moment who the victor was.)

the wedding chalice
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