2004 was a banner year for gay and lesbian rights when Massachusetts became the first state to extend full marriage benefits for same-sex couples. Provincetown quickly became the number one destination for LGBT unions. The inclusive, gay-friendly spirit provides the perfect place for all couples (straight ones, too!) to host a wedding, or commitment ceremony, or spend their honeymoon. In addition to the charming seaside splendor that Provincetown provides, there are a plethora of party planners, caterers, venues, and other helpful businesses that make it easy and comfortable for future newlyweds to plan their special day. Provincetown truly is ‘Like Nowhere Else’ and we’re certain your special time will be an event of a lifetime.
Obtaining a marriage license is one of the easiest steps in your journey. The town clerk issues the licenses at town hall. First you must file your intentions to marry and then there is a 3 day mandatory waiting period. Please note that intentions to marry can only be filed in person and may not be done via mail or internet. Please visit the town’s website for further information. Once you have the legal requirements covered now comes the fun part, planning your event. Keep in mind that July and August are the two busiest months in Provincetown, so your options may be more limited unless you plan far in advance.
Where should we get married?
There are no shortage of options on where to get married. Provincetown can accommodate any size wedding including getting married on the beach. Town beaches do not require a permit, but you also can not block access to the general public. Beaches along the Cape Cod National Seashore, like Herring Cove and Race Point, require a permit, but allow for a more secluded experience. You can even have a bonfire! For more information and an application visit the National Seashore's website at http://www.nps.gov/caco/index.htm.
Get Married at a historical landmark, museum or other special location around town
Most businesses, including local museums or historic landmarks will rent space and accommodate wedding parties.
Have a traditional ceremony at a religiously-affiliated venue
There are several LGBT friendly churches in town that will host a ceremony that reflects the individual spirituality of any given couple (gay or straight). No dogma, just devotion.
Have your ceremony at a hotel or guesthouse
Many hotels and guest houses have beautiful spaces, both inside and out, in which to have your ceremony. When you are making your reservations for lodging ask the hotel or guest house if they have a space where you could have your ceremony. Many hotel and guesthouses consider it a great honor that you would like to have your special ceremony on their property.
Have your wedding and reception catered
How about a clam bake on the beach? A catered reception at your hotel or guest house? An usual location in Provincetown that is special to you? A full service caterer or party planner can not only cater your reception but they can help you plan the entire event from beginning to end including flowers, photographers, minister/justice of the peace, etc.
Have your ceremony at a restaurant along with your reception
When selecting a location for your reception consider having your wedding at the same location.
Who can I use to officiate my ceremony?
The Provincetown Business Guild (PBG) has many members who can help you find an officiants who will conduct your ceremony outside of the church. Make sure to check off "Ministers/Justices of the Peace" under "Search".
How can I make my occasion even more special?
From beginning to end Provincetown has everything a couple needs to have the perfect engagement, wedding and honeymoon. Consider buying your rings at a jewelry store where many of them specialize in same sex designs. There are many photographers, florists, and bakeries just waiting to help make your day special. Need gifts for the bridal party or better yet for yourselves – shop or register at one (or several) of our shops where you'll find everything from home furnishings to kitchen goods, jewelry to clothing, small home décor to artwork. With it’s natural beauty, vast array of services and friendliness, Provincetown is the perfect place to have that perfect wedding you always dreamed of.