Couples marry in hog heaven

Husband and wife Keith and Patty Hurt practically met on a Harley Davidson motorcycle.

They both worked at the Carson-Tahoe Harley Davidson dealership in Carson City, and they both love the American legend.

On Monday, they finally got a chance to get married on one.

Harley dealer and licensed minister Lance Gilman married six couples Valentine's Day in the showroom of his Carson City dealership, invoking the vows with a uniquely "Harley" twist.

Couples, some clad in riding leathers, promised to be faithful as they ride down the road of life and never try to change each other, because just like a Sportster or Softail (two Harley models), individuals can never be changed, he said.

Patty, giddy with anxiety before their short ceremony, frowned out the window at Monday's rainstorm. "We were hoping to rid off into the sunset, but it didn't exactly end up that way," she joked.

The couple rode in on their new Fat Boy and when the ceremony ended Patty tossed her bouquet off the back on their way out. "It's the ultimate way to go," she said afterward.

Patty and Keith were joined by their 7-month-old daughter Madison, Ryan, 9, and 7-year-old Alex. The ceremony was actually a renewal of vows for the couple who said they had to forfeit their ceremony in the building last year because the roof blew off 10 days earlier.

Gilman said he saw the potential for a Harley-style wedding while visiting the company's headquarters in Milwaukee, Wisc. last year. In droves, couples were getting married on the company steps, he said.

"This is not a profit thing. This is a labor of love," he said. "If you aren't a part of the Harley lifestyle, then you can't really hope to understand it."

Gilman said his Harley dealership is the only licensed chapel in Carson City and the only Harley chapel in the United States. He said he hopes in the near future to offer religious services at the dealership.

"The people who ride Harley Davidson motorcycles are spiritual people," Gilman said. "You might think there are a lot of drinkers or outlaws, but it's actually the opposite. They all care about each other and it is a big community."


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