Anyone who’s been to a bar and had extra-friendly service from the bartender has probably just assumed that the kindness was false; a bartender who flirts with customers is likely to get extra tips, after all.

“I will tell you that is not even true, at least not for me,” says Jessica, who was tending bar when she first met Jenna. “I had been hitting on Jenna for several months and was getting nothing back from her. Finally, one night her best friend was pretty much elbowing her, telling her to at least flirt back.” Flirt back Jenna did, and four years later, the two tied the knot at Granite Bay Golf Club. While they initially thought they’d get married in a family member’s backyard, they fell in love with the beauty of the golf club’s grounds, the ease of not having to plan each individual detail on their own, and the friendliness of the club’s resident wedding planner. “As a same-sex couple, you have to think about whether your wedding will be welcome in a venue and whether you will have to fight prejudice,” Jenna says. “But everyone at the club welcomed us and was excited for our wedding.”

Because of weather concerns, the ceremony had to be moved indoors at the last minute to the club’s Library. But Jessica says that was just fine with her, as the floral designer and club staff gave the room an incredibly romantic feel, with cream linens, warm candles, and a stunning amount of deep-red roses that lit up the room. Their ceremony included not just promises to each other, but also promises to Jenna’s daughter. “It was moving,” Jessica says. “I was sobbing.”

However, the sobbing quickly tuned to celebration as the intimate 60-person wedding began to celebrate. They skipped most of the traditional first dances and went right to tearing up the dance floor, which was rocking non-stop. “Our DJ was amazing and kept everyone dancing all night,” says Jessica. “We have proof of his amazing DJ skills, because our nephew Scott literally split his pants from top of trouser past his leg. Apparently he knows how to drop it low.”

Both Jenna and Jessica agree they didn’t want to create a wedding, rather a celebration: of love, of each other, and of the recent legalization of same-sex marriage in the U.S. “It has and continues to be a long road. So finding my person, the person that I choose to spend my life with, means more to me than a party,” says Jessica. “It is and was a celebration.” 

—Suzie Dundas