JODIE CHALMERS, a social worker, and Ben Singer, a land surveyor, were married spontaneously in Bath with the help of notaries from a local bank in February.

JODIE CHALMERS, a social worker, and Ben Singer, a land surveyor, were married spontaneously in Bath with the help of notaries from a local bank in February.

BATH

Jodie Chalmers’ wedding was nothing like she expected — on a Friday morning in late February, on the Bath waterfront.

“Ben and I had planned on having a wedding ceremony Sept. 9,” said Chalmers. “But we are building a house and he found out from his woman at the bank for the loan that it would be a lot easier if we were married first.

“We decided to get married as soon as possible, but keep the ceremony on Sept. 9, so we were frantically looking for somebody to marry us. We printed off the list of notaries online, and we didn’t really know anybody on there, so I asked a woman I work with — her office is in Lewiston — if she could just marry us at her office, and she said yes,” said Chalmers.

Chalmers and her fiance, Ben Singer, arranged to be in Lewiston at 3:30 p.m. on Friday, but fate had other plans. One of their wedding rings was accidentally delivered to the wrong store. While their jeweler drove halfway to Portland to retrieve the ring, the couple decided to stop across the street at Bath Savings Institution, where Chalmers’ friend Melissa Pearson worked, to take care of some other business.

“I just mentioned briefly that we were getting married that afternoon, and she’s like, ‘oh I’m a notary,’ and I was like, ‘You can marry us! That would be so much more personable,’” said Chalmers.

Pearson, who had not actually conducted a marriage before, found another notary at the bank, Marianne Colburn, to perform the ceremony. The couple collected their rings from the jeweler, a bouquet of flowers from Brackett’s Market and made their way down to the waterfront. Mary Ann married the couple, while Melissa and Ben’s loan officer with the bank served as witness.

“It was really nice,” said Chalmers. “It just kind of came together perfectly, and on our way back from the river there were four employees from Bath Savings Institution who had watched the whole thing and printed a big red heart picture and posted it in the window.”

“I grew up in Bath, and knowing a lot of people at the bank, it was kind of a really nice way to have it all work out,” added Singer. “It was pretty special.”

The bank gifted the newlyweds a Bath Savings Institution umbrella as their first wedding gift. The two grabbed a drink at Kennebec Tavern before heading to Ben’s parents’ house to share the news.

A more formal ceremony will be held on their land in Richmond on Sept. 9, when they hope to have their house completed.


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