Aug 15 2011

Charleston Outdoor Ceremonies

Pamela DeWitt has the happiest job in the world. She’s not a chocolate taster or roller coaster tester, she’s a wedding officiant. After living in Maine for 25 years, DeWitt wanted to escape the icy weather. “I wanted to be along the coast and near the water so I chose Charleston,” she said. Her friend got her interested in a career officiating weddings and Charleston Outdoor Ceremonies was born in 1999. “It’s great. It’s one of the happiest things you can do.”

While Pamela officiates weddings all over the Lowcountry, from Edisto beach to Sullivan’s Island and all the Plantations in between, but her favorite destination is Folly Beach. Her absolute favorite spot is at the very end of Folly, near Morris Island. “There are these old trees that form this perfect little arch and I take couples down there all the time. I marry them right there under that little arc and it’s beautiful,” she said. The pictures don’t turn out half bad either.

Pamela strives to make each and every ceremony special and unique for the happy couple. If possible, she’ll meet with them first to find out exactly what they want to incorporate in their ceremony. And she’s done some very interesting things. She’s included the Celtic tradition of wrapping a vine or a cord around the couples’ hands to signify their bond. She’s done a sand ceremony, where the couple pours sand from the site of their nuptials into a vase for safe keeping. She’s even given an Apache blessing, recited a Shakespearean quote and told the story of how the couple met.

She also works to include any special family traditions, children or even pets into the ceremony if the couple desires. Pamela emails with the couple back and forth until they’ve settled on the perfect, personalized ceremony. “It’s just adding that little bit of a personal element into the ceremony that makes it theirs,” she said.

Charleston Outdoor Ceremonies offers four main packages: The Works ($350), Simple Ceremony ($250), Quick Elopement ($150) and Renewal of Vows ($150).

Pamela works with an associate, Lucia Galasso, and is affiliated with Waters Edge, a bed and breakfast on Folly. If you’re interested in her services, you can click here. She’ll take your reservation up to two weeks in advance, but if you’re looking for a spring wedding be warned: she’s already getting bookings for May of next year.

“It’s just the happiest job there is. Being at a wedding ceremony, everybody wants to be there.” Pamela said. “I’ve never done anything that brings more joy.”

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