Just in time for Valentine’s Day, February’s Art Walk was the perfect affair for art lovers, couples, singles and the heartbroken, featuring special events such as Married by the Specktator, Single Mingle and Dump Your Baggage.
The highlight of these events, however, was Married by the Specktator. Kerry Speckman, a.k.a. The Specktator, is a local personality, and writer for Jacksonville Magazine, The Resident and other publications. If that’s not enough, she’s also an ordained minister. Not knowing if we had just stumbled upon a great idea or a flop, Kerry agreed to officiate weddings, commitment ceremonies and vow renewals at Art Walk.
To round out Kerry’s weddings that night, artist Mark Zimmerman of The Temporary Solution created the “chapel of love,” local photographer Rob Futrell took photos, Florals by Bonnie provided a flower to couples, DVI’s Valerie Feinberg made the beautiful bouquet and local confectioner Sweet Pete’s provided chocolate-covered strawberries to guests.
Having seen the festivities advertised, Lyn Pankok and Randy Jager signed up to be married at 7 p.m. that night. Despite the threat of rain, plenty of friends, family and onlookers were there to witness the first-ever wedding at the First Wednesday Art Walk.
After a week of being married, I followed up with Lyn about her and Randy’s path to Art Walk matrimony:
When did Randy and you meet?
Believe it or not, Randy and I met on Plenty of Fish, a dating website, in May of 2013.
What made you decide to get married at Art Walk?
My friend, Diana, wanted to go to Art Walk, and then she saw the Chapel of Love and pointed it out to me. Randy and I were engaged in November and had been trying to think of how and when we were going to be married. Both of us were married before, so we did not want to go the traditional route. We wanted to include our friends and family in our celebration, and we saw this and thought it would be a great way to do it. Plus it was unique – something that we would not forget.
What was your favorite part?
Our favorite part was the uniqueness of it all and that we could share it with all that wanted to be a part of it. It was great. The pictures turned out awesome. There were so many people taking pictures – I have many keepsakes of that evening. Of course the bottom fell out of the sky shortly after but that just added to the memories, and I believe rain on a wedding is good luck.
I have been to Art Walk many times. That was Randy’s first Art Walk. I will have to take him back so he can actually walk around and see all of the sites. I love Art Walk. I love seeing Downtown Jacksonville alive and lit up in the evening. It is an awesome sight to see. When we were leaving Mark’s on Bay Street, I had to go back by my office. We came up Adams Street, and it was just a sight to see people everywhere and the streets lit up.
Do you have a honeymoon planned? If so, where?
It will be a belated honeymoon, but I think we are going to Disney World. I have not been there for many years, and we are both kids at heart.
I work for the City of Jacksonville. We are also die-hard Jaguars fans, so we are definitely Downtown at the stadium for tailgating and for the games. We go to Mark’s on Bay Street, which is an awesome place to meet our friends for drinks and fun. We enjoy other special events too, including the Jazz Festival coming up.
What’s your favorite thing about Downtown?
Downtown is very centralized for everybody in Jacksonville. It has a lot to offer if people would just give it a try, they would be pleasantly surprised at what they find.
Would you like to include anything else?
I just want to say thank you for giving Randy and I the opportunity to share our new beginning with our friends and family in such a unique way!