Couples renew wedding vows during Dayton Valley Days |

Couples renew wedding vows during Dayton Valley Days

Sandi Hoover

Three couples renewed their wedding vows Saturday during a special ceremony on the steps of the Dayton Courthouse.

The ceremony, offered as part of Dayton Valley Days, was the inspiration of Justice of the Peace Camille Vecchiarelli and several others helping to organize the annual festival, she said.

“We were talking about things we could do and kind of brainstorming,” she said. “I said, ‘I do wedding vows’ and we were just shootin’ the breeze. Next thing I know, I’m on the calendar of events,” she said, laughing.

For Dennis and Madeline Stallings, fourth-generation Daytonites, it was a chance to reconnect. They were married Feb. 17, 1974, in Las Vegas.

“This is our fourth time renewing our vows,” said Dennis Stallings. “We’ve been camping so long we don’t want to go find another partner. We’re just so deeply in love, and after renewing, we can go get some champagne.”

Theo McCormick and Quest Lakes were married in Verdi on July 12, 1992.

“We’re doing this because every year, I’m more and more glad I made the decision to marry him. We say it all the time, but this is a public announcement of our love,” she said.

Jami and Thomas Allen moved to Dayton a month ago. They were married in Reno on Nov. 17, 2007.

“We originally said we were going to do this every year, but the wedding chapel we were married in went out of business, so when she saw this, I said, ‘Let’s do it,'” said Thomas Allen.

“It’s to remind us of what our vows mean. We like to keep it spicy,” said Jami Allen.

“And, we like to throw a little fight in there every now and then in order to make up and keep it steamy,” Thomas Allen said.

As Judge Vecchiarelli read through the marriage renewal ceremony, the couple looked lovingly into each other’s eyes.

“As you come here today … and as you reflect back over all the years as husband and wife, you will now reaffirm those vows you took once before,” she


In closing, she shared an Old American Indian Wedding Prayer with the three couples that she was given by an Arizona judge She then pronounced the vows renewed, and with that, the couples kissed and were presented with certificates signed by the judge.

Vecchiarelli said she was pleased with the first mass renewal ceremony and hoped even more couples would consider participating next year.