Destination wedding ceremonies return to the top of Mount Diablo

More than a dozen couples started their weekend early, saying their “yes,” at nearly 4,000 feet above sea level. On Friday, 16 couples took the plunge, exchanging vows at the summit of Mount Diablo.

“From the moment I met Emese I knew it was her,” groom Neil Tweardy said.

He and his wife, Emese Bako, married without spectators, but instead had a spectacular view.

From 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., these duos took advantage of the “Destination Weddingswhile driving to the top of Mount Diablo in Clayton.

“We were looking at different places on the state website and saw advertising for this destination wedding,” newlywed couple Russel and Timothy Fernando said.

Each ceremony costs $60 and lasts approximately 20 minutes. A county official presides.

“We thought we were just going to get married at the courthouse. And just have a private ceremony with our friends. And it happened,” bride Lindsay Young said.

County officials said Destination Weddings is part of ongoing outreach efforts.

“We’re making a concerted effort to bring service to the community. That way people don’t have to come to Martinez to have civil ceremonies,” said Debi Cooper, Contra Costa County Clerk.

This is the third year that Contra Costa County has hosted destination weddings. But the first since the COVID-19 pandemic. Each time, the county must obtain a special use permit from the state Department of Parks. This year the weather cooperated, with little wind, no clouds and manageable temperatures. And the stories behind some of these couples were just as beautiful as the view.”

Neil and Emese met four years ago while he was doing relief work after Hurricane Irma, and she was on a sabbatical from school. Soon after, the two knew their “forever” had begun.

“Relieved…and happy,” Emese said. “Thrilled, relieved,” Twearny said. “Yeah, bliss. Absolute bliss.”

SEE ALSO: Mount Diablo daytime adventure offers some of the best scenic views

Lindsey Young and Jesse Radosezich met while working at a mall seven years ago. Both admit the connection was instantaneous.

“Eventually I told her it wouldn’t be professional,” Radosezich said, as his new bride blushed and covered her face. “So we ended up talking and dating.”

What started as a couple is now a threesome, as their son sat in a stroller during the ceremony.

On this day, every “I do” is another example that true love can scale any mountain.

“It couldn’t be more perfect,” Young said. »

Jesse Gary is a reporter based in the station’s South Bay bureau. Follow him on Twitter @JesseKTVU and Instagram @jessegontv

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