Nova Scotia

'A good story to tell': Fiona couldn't stop some in Nova Scotia from tying the knot

Couples with weddings scheduled for the weekend the storm was projected to hit Nova Scotia were presented with a choice. Some rescheduled their nuptials. Other didn't.

'It pretty much went as well as it could considering we had the hurricane,' said newlywed

A woman in a white dress with long sleeves carrying a bouquet of white flowers outdoors.
Weddings in Nova Scotia went ahead last weekend in the face of a massive storm. (paralisart/Shutterstock)

Some people in Nova Scotia took shelter as they prepared for last weekend's massive storm.

Others, however, got married.

Couples with weddings on the schedule had to choose what to do as Fiona made its approach.

Some rescheduled their nuptials, but others didn't.

Perris Clouthier, who spoke to CBC ahead of her wedding, said after over a year and a half of planning with her husband, Justin Clouthier, she quickly had to readjust her plans for her outdoor wedding when she heard about the storm.

She said she and her husband decided to go ahead with their plans, though, despite Fiona.

"It pretty much went as well as it could considering we had the hurricane," Clouthier said with a chuckle.

The reception and ceremony was held in Urbania, N.S., at the Shubenacadie Tidal Bore Rafting Resort, which lost power Friday night when the storm was at its worst, Clouthier said. 

Path had to be cleared

But the facility had generators, so the cabins where guests stayed had heat and water. The same couldn't be said for Clouthier's own cabin, which was without plumbing and heating.

Trees blocking the path into the resort had to be cut on the morning of the wedding to allow makeup artists and restaurant staff onto the property.

In the end, about 80 guests attended, Clouthier said. 

"We had a generator going, and funnily enough, it went out in the middle of the reception," she said. "But one of my cousins had brought his own generator, and so we plugged that bad boy in and … we were able to keep the party going."

Justin Clouthier said he wasn't too concerned about the nuptials ahead of the storm and was happy to see things go ahead with little trouble.

"I'm just more glad that everyone was — first of all, safe — but they also managed to have a good time and at this point, it's just really good memories of getting married in a hurricane," he said.

A woman in an off-the-shoulder, sweetheart neckline wedding dress stands next to a man in a navy blue suit with and a deep red tie.
Leah Morash says her new father-in-law is planning a party to allow people who weren't able to attend to celebrate the couple. (Submitted by Leah Morash)

Another newly married bride, Leah Morash, called her wedding after the storm "the best day of our lives."

Like Clouthier, Morash also had been in the wedding planning process for over a year when she heard about Fiona, and her thoughts about the day were a lot different.

"I heard [about] the hurricane, and … I was just in disbelief," she said. In the days leading up to the ceremony, her guests slowly began to cancel.

Still, she, her husband, Devon Morash, and the few others who were able to make it to Fossil Farms Oceanside Retreat in Merigomish, N.S., the day before the wedding.

"When that storm hit that night, we were all scared," she said.

But the next morning the small wedding party went ahead with the celebration. They got ready in the resort's kitchen with a compact mirror leaning against a box of crackers. They secured a justice of the peace who lived down the road after the one originally scheduled couldn't make it.

'Let's just get married'

With a generator in use at the resort, Morash said they were able to have a small wedding. 

"All of a sudden the mood shifted to, 'We can do this, we don't need anybody here. Let's just get married,'" she said.

She said her new father-in-law, who wasn't able to make it, is now planning a party for the couple that will have a larger attendance.

As for the wedding itself, Morash said she was happy to have had the ceremony, in spite of historic weather events.

"It was actually the best day of our lives, and it was the funnest day of our lives and I couldn't even picture it any differently, even with a hurricane hard to believe," Morash said.

"We were lucky enough to get a really nice photo and now we just have a really good story to tell."

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Danielle Edwards is a reporter with CBC Nova Scotia. She has previously worked at The Canadian Press in Halifax and the Globe and Mail in Toronto covering a variety of topics. You can reach her at danielle.edwards@cbc.ca

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