I am getting married on Earth Day this year. We chose the date because it's when family members are able to travel, but it was a happy coincidence because I'm a professional environmentalist, so it's a meaningful holiday for me.
But then the March for Science was schedule for April 22, and I am now feeling a little torn. It's too late to change our wedding date. But I am sad that we will not be downtown at the Scientists' March, demonstrating for something so crucially important.
Do you have ideas for how we can be a part of the march, even though we'll be out in the woods in Southern Maryland? Should the groomsmen wear pocket protectors with their boutonnieres? Perhaps there is a clever sign our flower girls might carry down the aisle? At least I'd like to honor my fiance's mom, who is a kick-ass vaccine research scientist. Thanks! – Ruthie
What a bummer that the timing is so prohibitive, but at least your wedding day still falls on such a meaningful date in general. I am so sure that Offbeat Bride readers are going to have some super useful advice to make celebrating science a big part of your wedding, but here are a few ideas that we had…
Offer ways to contribute to science
Charitable donations are always a great way to give back to the scientific causes you want to support. this could include charitable favors, a charity reception game, using your registry for charity, etc. You can see lots of ideas here.
Include a science shout-out at your ceremony
Maybe you include a mention of your partner's mom and her work in the program, or a little bit of signage giving some love to the scientific community. You could even try out one of our featured science-themed unity ceremonies including this chemical reaction ceremony or this elephant toothpaste ceremony.
Your officiant could introduce the ceremony as a way to combine a symbol of your connection with some solidarity with the marchers as a great way to get your message across.
Have a science-themed reading
Another offbeat couple, Jess and Mac, included some science in their ceremony via a reading mash-up of different writings from Carl Sagan, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Albert Einstein, and others:
Lost somewhere between immensity and eternity is a tiny blue dot that we humans call home. And yet our species is young and curious and brave and shows much promise. In the last few millennia we have made the most astonishing and unexpected discoveries. We are constantly reminded that humans have evolved to wonder, that understanding is a joy, that knowledge is a prerequisite to survival. Our little planet floats like a mote of dust in the morning sky. All that you see, all that we can see, exploded out of a star billions of years ago, and the particles slowly arranged themselves into living things, including all of us. We are made of star stuff. We are the mechanism by which the universe can comprehend itself.
The world is so exquisite with so much love and moral depth. We should remain grateful every day for the brief but magnificent opportunity that life provides. The sum of all our evolution, our thinking and our accomplishments is love. How on earth can you explain in terms of chemistry and physics so important a biological phenomenon as love? Put your hand on a stove for a minute and it seems like an hour. Sit with the person you love for an hour and it seems like a minute. That's relativity. A marriage makes two fractional lives a whole. It gives to two questioning natures a renewed reason for living. It brings a new gladness to the sunshine, a new fragrance to the flowers, a new beauty to the earth, and a new mystery to life.
Have your wedding party represent
Let your flower kids carry a statement
Let science feature in your decor
Kate and Alex, a physics engineer at Caltech who married a software engineer at NASA, had so much amazing science-themed decor to see. If there's still time, see if you can find ways to inject some science into your centerpieces or signage.
Fellow science-loving readers: do you have any ideas to share with Ruthie? Let us know in the comments!