Edmonton biologists want you to come to their Nerd Nite wedding
Amanda Kelley and Scott Persons are preparing for an unusual, dinosaur-themed wedding
He's a paleontologist with an affinity for dinosaur tails, she's a behavioural ecologist who is nuts about squirrels.
Both love science, sci-fi classics and long walks through the wilderness.
Amanda Kelley and Scott Persons are two biologists in love.
When two self-proclaimed nerds fall for each other, they might attribute their attraction to chemistry, biology, pheromones, and maybe even physics.
- Edmonton paleontologist helps MMA champ hunt dinos
- Red Squirrels grow up to be conformists, says Amanda Kelley
But Kelley and Persons need no such explanation.
From the moment they first locked eyes in ecology class at the University of Alberta four years ago, they knew there was no formula for those fireworks.
Their romance has since taken them across the country, and the world — from photographing African wildlife to discovering the horned skull and skeleton of a new dinosaur in the badlands of Alberta.
I have a dinosaur tie picked out just for the event.- Scott Persons
Persons proposed at the edge of an inactive volcano in Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania, Africa, after a memorable day of seeing lions, rhinos and zebras on a safari.
"That evening when we arrived at our lodge at the slopes of the crater, we went back to our room and I waited for Amanda out on the balcony," Persons said during an interview on CBC Edmonton's Radio Active.
"I like to think I did a pretty good job, because we had the jungle mist rolling in, and there was buffalo off in the distance foraging, and I proposed there."
"He did do a good job, I said yes. It was pretty convincing." Kelley said with a laugh.
And after a long courtship, they're finally tying the knot — and you're invited.
Nerd Nite nuptials
Their wedding will be as non-traditional as the proposal. They'll be exchanging vows at a public Nerd Nite event at Edmonton's Old Timers Cabin.
And all Edmonton nerds are formally invited to the ceremony on July 25, although seating is limited.
Nerd Nite centres around academic talks about everything from computer coding to space exploration, and the couple's wedding will be no exception.
"When we first started planning the wedding, we started to think about the guests that were going to be there. We couldn't help but notice we had a lot of cool people that were coming," Kelley said.
"So we thought we should take advantage of them and use them for our entertainment."
Persons' mentor, acclaimed paleontologist Philip Currie, will set the tone for the evening with a talk called 'A Romantic World View of Dinosaurs.' He'll talk about "the secrets to a softer and sweeter side of dinosaurs" with a look at the courtship rituals of the prehistoric creatures.
Following that romantic interlude, fellow paleontologist Robert Bakker will take guests on an epic dinosaur battle as he tries to solve a 145 million-year-old murder mystery.
The happy couple can't wait to tie the knot in front of friends, family and fellow nerds from across the city.
"I have a dinosaur tie picked out just for the event," Persons said.
You are formally invited to the wedding of Amanda Kelley and Scott Persons
- When: Monday, July 25, 2016
- Where: The Old Timers Cabin (9430 99th St.)
- $20 in advance — on sale Monday, June 27 at 9:30 a.m.
- Cash bar
- Dress code: Semi-formal. (Hey, it's a wedding, after all!)
- (Children 17 & Under Will Not Be Admitted)