Couples commit and make Akron Civic Theater their Valentine’s Da - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Couples commit and make Akron Civic Theater their Valentine’s Day wedding destination

Kimberly and Chris Hartlaub married on Feb. 14, 2018. (Source: WOIO) Kimberly and Chris Hartlaub married on Feb. 14, 2018. (Source: WOIO)
Wedding treats for the Valentine's Day couples. (Source: WOIO) Wedding treats for the Valentine's Day couples. (Source: WOIO)
Happy couple married on Valentine's Day at the Akron Civic Theater. (Source: WOIO) Happy couple married on Valentine's Day at the Akron Civic Theater. (Source: WOIO)
New couple and best girl. (Source: WOIO) New couple and best girl. (Source: WOIO)
Happily married at the Akron Civic Theater. (Source: WOIO) Happily married at the Akron Civic Theater. (Source: WOIO)
AKRON, OH (WOIO) -

About one dozen couples showed up at the Akron Civic Theater Wednesday, holding hands and smiling from ear to ear.

Floral bouquets were spotted throughout the crowd while some women wore black, red and of course white dresses to say their vows in front of family, friends and cell phone cameras. 

One couple said they were thrilled to be able to have their ceremony at the theater.

"We're very into historical. We've been waiting for the perfect venue and this is the perfect place. This means a lot to us," Kimberly Hartlaub said excitedly.

Kimberly and Chris Hartlaub have been together for nine years. The self-proclaimed movie buffs said when they heard about this year's ceremonies taking place at the theater, they couldn't resist. 

"I grew up in Akron and from the time I was a little kid I used to come down here when they had events and stuff. I've always thought this was a kind of a cool place," Chris added. "We're both kind of old-movie buffs, we really enjoy coming down here." 

The couples were taking part in an almost three-year tradition, tying the knot for a small fee on Valentine’s Day. In addition to a marriage license, couples paid only $25 if you lived in the court's jurisdiction, $40 if you lived outside. 

Appointments were first-come, first-served and it had to be paid for before February 14. 

The ceremony was held on the stairs in theater's lobby, which was decorated with glasses filled with flowers.

Akron Municipal Court’s Administrative/Presiding Judge Kathryn Michael, who is currently running for a judge in the court of Common Pleas presided over the nuptials and said she was elated when the theater opened their doors, free of charge.

"It is a well-loved building and I think the people who come in can feel it. This is my kind of thing, it's the only time people are happy to see me wearing a robe and I'm happy to perform the weddings," said Judge Michael. 

A table of sweets and desserts was arranged by the judge's staff members, who enjoyed witnessing the exchanges of love. 

One bride-to-be made it a point to decorate her shoes for this special day while another let her emotions get the best of her.

"I had such an out pour of love, I just couldn't hold it in. I thought I could, I thought I was good but it just came out," Kimberly said. "Its been a long time coming and we were so ready for this," added Kimberly.

"Today is something special," said Chris.

"Valentine's Day is such special day for so many people it should bring out the love in everyone," said Judge Michael. "It's the day of love!"

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