VERNON - When Shawn and Jessica show their wedding album to grandkids, they won’t be able to name all the guests in the photos.
That’s because the couple is getting married in front of a bunch of strangers this weekend after winning an all expenses paid shotgun wedding from Lone Pine Ranch Event Centre in Vernon.
“It’ll be a great story to tell our grandkids,” bride-to-be Jessica Taylor says.
She and fiancé Shawn Cardinal got together 15 years ago while living in Prince George. Cardinal proposed to her roughly 13 years ago on Christmas Eve.
“He actually bought me two engagement rings because he didn’t know which one I would like,” Taylor says.
The couple always planned on a small wedding with close friends and family, followed by a barbecue, but life got in the way.
“We’ve thought about it and tried saving up for it but had lots of things come up in our lives with vehicles breaking down, having children. Since we came to Vernon, we’ve had to move ten times in 11 years because the houses we rented were put up for sale,” Taylor says.
On a whim, Taylor entered a contest for a wedding at Lone Pine Ranch which includes a commissionaire, photographer, and a one-night stay at Predator Ridge. Out of 74 entries, she and Cardinal won.
“It was unbelievable. I started bawling right away,” Taylor says.
Over the next few days, the couple will be welcoming family from out of town and finalizing a few details, but the big tasks are all taken care of.
“All the major details when it comes down to the wedding part, I have to let it go because it’s all taken care of, which is nice,” Taylor says.
The ceremony is set for 3 p.m. this Sunday and will coincide with a Mother’s Day Event at the ranch from noon to 4 p.m. featuring music by OK Corral, line dancing demonstrations, games, face painting and a complimentary glass of wine for moms.
The ranch is located at 315 Commonage Rd., near Predator Ridge Golf Course and Sparkling Hill Resort.
“Everybody is like ‘you’ll never forget your anniversary',” Taylor says of getting married on Mother’s Day.
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