UPDATE 2020! Mary has relocated to Toronto, Canada. You can find information about Canadian weddings at ElopeToronto.com I'm keeping this blog because I've been told it's very helpful for couples in New York! If you need a wedding officiant in New York or Toronto, email me at MaryBeaty (at) gmail (dot) com, and I'll try to help. Best wishes!

Thursday

Central Park in Spring - Locations for wedding ceremonies

Central Park NY Ladies Pavilion Here are some of our favorite spots for weddings in City Parks. The ladies pavilion at Hernshead is the most popular, and is therefore best for a mid-week ceremony. It is quite small, and is really best for 6-8 people.AVOID ON SATURDAYS from May-Oct, because of a very loud amplified busker on the bank below.

Central Park, The ObeliskThe Obelisk is behind the Metropolitan Museum. In the spring, it is approached through an avenue of cherry trees and is stunning. Ample parking in the Museum parking lot, so good for elderly guests. A short ways away is a nice lawn with a stone bench, also suitable for a standing wedding, and if you continue further up the path, you can reach the dancing terrace below the Belvedere castle, which slopes down to the pool, and has a view of the castle.

Central Park, Belvedere Castle The Belvedere Castle does not permit weddings inside or on the balcony, but it is possible to use the Shakespeare Garden below the castle, or to stand in the pergolas overlooking the Delacorte Shakespeare Theatre and the Turtle Pond.

There are the two little covered pergolas on the Belvedere Terrace, one overlooking the Delacorte Theatre (the castle is hidden between them). Remember that this is a tourist location, and it will be constantly busy on a warm weekend.

Central Park Shakespeare Garden Here is the Shakespeare Garden, which has a nice sundial in the middle. PLEASE NOTE that this location is only suitable for 6-10 people - the garden itself is quite small, and the ground slopes around the sundial and the tree is low. For a larger group (15-20) go up the hill to the Belvedere terrace in front of the castle - see the pergolas above.

Other overlooked spots are: The Harlem Meer, The Loch, Cop Cot by 59th street (be sure to book), parts of the Ramble overlooking the lake (under reconstruction), and several of the little rustic shelters, also two shelters over on the 5th avenue side.

Don't forget the "other" park designed by Olmsted and Vaux! The vale of Kasmir is in Prospect Park, Brooklyn. Prospect Park Vale of Kasmir It is isolated and quiet and absolutely magical. (note: this lovely spot is now neglected and being re-built, good if you like ruins, though!). You can book some specified spots in Prospect Park, or just assemble with a small group under the trees, or by the lake. But avoid the beginning of May, which is the Cherry Blossom Festival in the Botanic Gardens - quite a mob!