Chief Justice Berch and one of the happy couples

On Change of Venue Friday, it’s my custom to share something a bit far afield from law practice. It’s the digital version of casual Friday.

But this week, Change of Venue takes you from law practice all the way to … the Arizona Supreme Court.

Hmmm? What? What could be more, well, legal than the state’s highest court?

True, I admit. And yet this week the Court plunged into an endeavor so wild that I couldn’t ignore it, especially on a Friday.

The unique occurrence, you may have heard, was simply this: Chief Justice Berch married, en masse, approximately 90 couples.

Who are those people? They are the couples who found a Centennial/Valentine’s Day mashup irresistible, who braved an almost-rainy day to gather and pledge their troth with 178 strangers.

The machinations that had to occur to allow this to happen must have been significant. Marriage licenses had to be obtained, and multiple public agencies had to coordinate. If a step in the process was missed, a couple could find themselves bound together by good feelings only, rather than by the power of the state.

Given those challenges, attendees agreed that the marital operation came off nearly flawlessly. (I suppose you could say the marital was carried out with martial precision.)

To add to the grace with which Chief Justice Berch and Superior Court Clerk Michael Jeanes (and their terrific staff) carried out their task, the Chief’s warm and well-written remarks were perfectly pitched to an outdoor occasion of joy and mirth. Well done. (I’ve asked to get a copy of the Chief’s remarks; I’ll share them when I get a copy.)

(For a less romantic take on Valentine’s Day, you should see the ad that 99 Cents Stores puts out on the loving occasion. Want to see it, don’t you? Then stumble on over to my Tumblr page.)

I’ve placed a few photos from the Court’s wedding here. But to see all of them—and there are a bunch—head over to the Facebook page of Arizona Attorney Magazine.

Have a great—and romantic—weekend.

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