Valentine’s Day….

Photo by Lisa Rhinehart

This week brings Valentine’s Day. A day we set aside to celebrate love, and a great day to propose or even elope! I’m not a fan of excessive commercialism, but I do have a soft spot for romance. They are not mutually exclusive.

Here’s a little history of this holiday. Like many modern celebrations, St. Valentine’s Day, as we used to call it, contains elements from various traditions, in this case Christian and ancient Rome. The Catholic Church lists three different saints with the same or similar names, and not much is known about them. But the connection to love is the story of a priest who served in third century Rome. Legend has it that he defied the Emperor Caludius’ decree against soldier’s being married, by performing marriage ceremonies for them, in secret. How romantic!

 

Romance is in the air!

In more recent times the holiday, also known as the Feast of Saint Valentine became popular around the 17th century when friends and lovers exchanged small tokens of affection in honor of him. With the advent of technology this developed into printed cards. It is now celebrated around the world, second in popularity only to New Years Day!

We can thank greeting card companies, jewelry companies, florists and candy makers for creating our modern traditions. Although the custom of giving these is the result of advertising, it doesn’t mean they aren’t enjoyable. Au contraire!

While I can’t tell you what to give your true love or how to propose, I can give you some ideas on how to elope, especially if you are eloping in the Poconos.

First and foremost make sure you have a valid license. You can obtain a marriage license in any county in PA and use it in any other county in PA. There is a three-day waiting period until you can use that license, which expires in 60 days. Call the courthouse where you intend obtain your license and get their specific instructions.

Next step: find someone who will marry you. Judges, Magisterial District Judges (used to be called Justice of the Peace) and many others might not marry you outside their offices or on weekends. Again – call and find out. There are some ministers and other celebrants, who will do last minute weddings. I know I do!

And finally if you live in the Poconos you don’t have to go anywhere because we have such romantic places to enjoy right here. If you’re coming to the Poconos – lucky you! We have The Shawnee Inn, Skytop Lodge, The Stroudsmoor Country Inn, The French Manor, and Mountain Springs Lake, just to name a few.

Happy Valentine’s Day to romantics and lovers everywhere.

Thank you once again Lisa Rhinehart! for the gorgeous photos!

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    Lois Heckman

    Lois Heckman is a certified Life-Cycle Celebrant who officiates at weddings, funerals, and other ceremonies in the Poconos and beyond. She has performed hundreds of ceremonies and brings a wealth of knowledge to her work. Follow her on Pinterest, ... Read Full
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