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Love is storm worth weathering

Love is in the air.

February is often associated with love, and that’s most likely because a holiday devoted to the emotion falls in the middle of the month.

There are reminders everywhere that Friday is Valentine’s Day. You can’t miss the shades of pink and red accenting everything from clothing to decor to sweet treats. Hearts, flowers, stuffed animals bearing hearts and flowers, and chocolates galore fill the shelves of local stores.

Valentine’s Day is a day set aside to let those who are special to you know that you care. A valentine doesn’t have to be someone you have a romantic interest in, but that is probably the most common way people think about the day.

There are many ways to express your love. You can give your valentine a small token of your affection or make a grand sweeping gesture. You can also pledge a lifetime of love by tying the knot, something thousands of people across the nation do each year.

In Clark County, 4,650 marriages were recorded and 5,124 licenses were issued during February last year. Of those, about 20 percent were on Valentine’s Day or the day before or the day after the holiday.

Surprisingly, February isn’t the most popular month in the county for getting married. Statistics show that there were more marriages recorded and licenses issued in April and October. Yet that didn’t stop those who traveled from all over the U.S. and countries near and far from celebrating their love.

A bit closer to home, our own justice of the peace, Judge Victor Miller, regularly presides at weddings.

“It’s one of the better parts of the job,” he said, noting that everyone is smiling when he’s done, which isn’t always the case.

Miller said he has been officiating at weddings ever since he was sworn in as justice of the peace. It was a service offered by the late Cliff Segerblom, who also served as a municipal judge. Miller said he recalls being told by the late Gene Segerblom about how generous her husband was, paying the license filing fees for those who couldn’t afford it.

Though he doesn’t pay the fees, the justice who served prior to him didn’t want to perform marriages, and Miller said he felt it was a tradition he wanted to carry on.

“I’ve done weddings all over,” he said.

He said he has officiated at a wedding at the airport where the couple went skydiving immediately after saying their vows and in the middle of Lake Mead where the couple literally took the plunge once they said “I do.”

In addition to performing the ceremony, he often offers advice to the soon-to-be newlyweds. One such instance was to a man, a civil engineer from Seattle who wanted to get married at noon Aug. 12 in the middle of Hoover Dam.

After learning that the date had been selected because it was the man’s late mother’s birthday and he wanted to honor her and that he wanted to be married at the dam because it was an engineering marvel, Miller said he told him that unless it was raining it would be 125 degrees in the shade and there is no shade at the dam. Instead he suggested a morning visit and directed the man to the lodge at Mount Charleston, where the temperatures would be much more conducive to a happy occasion.

Additionally, Miller said he has words of wisdom about the unpredictability of the weather at Hemenway Valley Park for those who want to be wed in that picturesque setting. Just like a marriage, there will be beautiful springlike days, there will be hot and steamy days and there will be stormy, cold and grumpy days, but you will always have a beautiful view (of your spouse).

It’s a metaphor for love — and life — that can be appreciated no matter who we spend Valentine’s Day with this year.

Hali Bernstein Saylor is editor of the Boulder City Review. She can be reached at hsaylor@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9523. Follow @HalisComment on Twitter.

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