Your Day, Your Way
EVERY COUPLE IS UNIQUE
Your ceremony should reflect your uniqueness: the values, experience, and dreams you bring to your marriage. I work with couples to craft a ceremony that speaks for who you are and what you are promising to each other. The words on this special day can help shape your future together.
EVERY CEREMONY IS SPECIAL
Most of the weddings I officiate at are described as “nontraditional,” “meaningful,” “spiritual but not religious,” “secular,” or “creative blendings of our traditions.” Each one is crafted to fit your vision. Do you want to incorporate special rituals? We can find creative ways to include inventive or re-shaped cultural traditions.
HI! I’M JONE
I’m an Ethical Culture Leader (humanist clergy) and ordained Unitarian Universalist minister. I have been crafting and officiating at wedding ceremonies for more than 30 years. I love working with couples to bring out their best on their special day!
LOVE IS LOVE
I gladly perform legal wedding ceremonies for one man and one woman, but also ceremonies involving Gay, Lesbian, Queer, Trans, or Nonbinary persons, or others in the LGBTQIA+ community. Both Ethical Culture and Unitarian Universalism supported marriage equality early, by performing ceremonies and advocating for legal change.
How I Work
I can perform such ceremonies at a venue of your choosing, usually within 50 miles of Riverdale, New York City.
For weddings, I meet with the couple at least twice, 1-2 hours each meeting, once to get acquainted and decide together if it’s a good fit, and then again to craft together the ceremony itself.
I usually attend rehearsals. It helps make sure everything goes smoothly on your special day if we can all participate in the run-through of the ceremony.
Couples bring me their license at least the day before the ceremony (often at the rehearsal) so that I can prepare it for signing. It is the couple’s responsibility to get the marriage license in the state where the ceremony will be held (usually New York and New Jersey). Check the online official websites for details. I recommend getting the license several weeks ahead of time if you can.
Fees for creating the ceremony and officiating are sliding-scale, depending in part on the size of the wedding and the complexity of the ceremony and planning. Estimated ranges are listed below under the three wedding officiant packages. We’ll talk about fees at our first meeting.
You’ll cover any transportation costs in addition to the fees.
WEDDING OFFICIANT PACKAGES
Small weddings are those with fewer than 100 guests, and that have no more than 6 attendants. These can be lovely intimate weddings and require care and attention to have a meaningful ceremony. Fee ranging from $300 to $1000.
MEDIUM TO LARGE WEDDINGS
Weddings with more than 100 guests or more than 6 attendants are often more complicated and require more time to plan and rehearse. Whatever the size, I work with you to have the ceremony speak for you and your values. Fee ranging from $500 to $1500.
Just a simple ceremony, with the couple, the officiant, and witnesses. Maybe a friend or two, a photographer? At home, or at a simple venue, even in a park (you’ll check with the venue to see if permission is needed). Fee ranging from $150 to $300.
When I decided to get married I knew that I wanted the day to be unique and to fit who me and my husband are. Part of that included choosing who would officiate our wedding as I didn’t want to get married in a church or have a religious ceremony.
The most important goal for me was that our day would reflect the love we feel for each other and for the words we spoke to fit who we are as a couple and as individuals. Jone was instrumental in guiding us towards piecing together the framework for our ceremony, providing suggestions on readings and help with what to consider when writing our own vows.
We felt completely comfortable in her presence and there was no judgement towards our needs or beliefs but instead an openness and enthusiasm to learn who we are so that she could give us the best experience possible.
We met with her several times prior to the wedding and she was available both on the phone and email for questions and support.
On the big day she met us at our suite in The Plaza Hotel where she performed the ceremony eloquently and beautifully.
It was one of the best days of my life and I know that a huge reason for that was because of Jone’s warmth, professionalism and expertise.
IT’S GOING TO BE AWESOME!
LET’S PLAN YOUR BIG DAY!
It’s Never Too Early To Start Planning Your Ceremony
You can send an email to me via the link below. Please include:
- names and email addresses of both partners
- expected or likely date and time of ceremony
- expected or likely location of the ceremony
- approximate number of guests
- any other information you think will be useful
I’ll check my calendar for your planned (or tentative) date. I’ll get back to you, usually within 8-48 hours, and, if possible, schedule an appointment to talk about your ceremony.
Or you can schedule a quick appointment via phone or Zoom to answer any questions you may have. Include the likely date and location if possible in the message on the scheduler.
Image credits: Adobe Images, Wandermore Photography, Bill Lewis, public domain