Miami University was the setting for a massive wedding vow renewal ceremony during its alumni weekend. The unofficial count of couples gathered Saturday, June 20, is 1,087: The current Guinness World Record of 624 couples was set in Pittsburgh in 2008.
Miami set out to break the record during its bicentennial year (1809-2009) by first recruiting alums who are married to each other, also known as Miami Mergers. Of Miami alums, 14.25% (26,330) are married to each other, believed to be one of the largest numbers of married alums at any university. Miami then invited Miami Acquisitions – alums married to non-Miamians – Miami parents, faculty, staff, friends and the general public community.
The Merger Moment ceremony, officiated by Oxford Mayor Prue Dana, took place at the Upham Hall Arch on campus where it’s fabled that a couple who kisses under the arch will get married. After the ceremony, couples were invited to walk through the arch for a kiss.
The newest Miami Merger, Stephanie Reid (’09) and Nick Hieber (’09), married the night before the event and signed their wedding certificate at the Merger Moment. The ceremony also included Miami’s oldest Merger, Robert (’38) and June (’39) Frame, Miami head basketball coach Charlie Coles, whose immediate family includes four Miami Mergers, and former U.S. Senator Mike DeWine and his wife Frances.
Miami is awaiting official confirmation from Guinness World Records.
To view photos and learn more, visit www.miamialum.org/s/916/index.aspx.