Weddings, art and outlandish get-ups galore at Rivertown Revival

  • Newlyweds Jade and Michael Solis kiss after getting married at the Rivertown Revival in Petaluma, California, on July 19, 2014. (Alvin Jornada / For The Press Democrat)

Wearing a black suit and fake gun in his holster, Michael Solis took his place Saturday beneath an upright boat on a hill and waited for his bride.

Jade Dang, gussied up as a saloon girl, walked the aisle, hay crunching beneath her black lace-up boots. Reaching the boat, she clasped hands with her future husband and the ceremony began.

“Ahoy, ladies and gentlemen,” Petaluma Vice Mayor Gabe Kearney said.

Rivertown Revival


And so it went at Petaluma’s Rivertown Revival, where $5 marriages, old-timey music and mildly risqué clothing were brought together Saturday with entertaining zeal.

Thousands gathered in near-perfect summer weather at Steamer Landing Park to enjoy the event, which harkens back to the early 1900s, when the Petaluma River teemed with flat-bottomed schooners shipping eggs, grain and livestock from the south Sonoma County port town to San Francisco.

Solis, a cashier at a feed store, looked the part in his fancy wedding suit, as did Dang, who is a server at Dempsey’s Restaurant and Brewery.

The couple had an infinite number of choices where to get married but settled on the festival because of the cost and proximity to their apartment across the river.

“No matter how far we get carried away from Petaluma, we can always come back here,” Solis said.

Solis’ aunt, Kate Cullen of Modesto, said the marriage planning was “hassle-free.”

“They’re happy,” she said of the couple.

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