We love that more and more Edmontonians are embracing stress-free, intimate weddings by planning their own Edmonton elopement. An elopement is a great way to celebrate your love and commitment without the huge price tag and hassle of a full-size wedding.

Plus in a place like Edmonton with a stunning city skyline, the mighty North Saskatchewan River snaking through, cool downtown scene and on the doorstep of so much natural beauty, it only makes sense that you’d want to elope in E-Town!

Planning an elopement in Edmonton, Alberta? We’ve got you covered. Read on to start planning your perfect Edmonton elopement!

Why plan an Edmonton elopement?

Most couples who decide to elope do so because they’d prefer an intimate celebration over a big wedding. Rather than spending months or years planning an expensive and stressful wedding, elopement couples can save money, save time and save stress by opting for a more casual wedding day.

Elopements are great for couples who don’t want to be the centre of attention and who don’t want to spend a fortune on a one day event. They’re for couples who would prefer a sweet, short and intimate moment that’s just about the two of them. Not sure if eloping is right for you? Find out!

An Edmonton elopement might be right for you for a few reasons. Perhaps you’re an Edmonton local or grew up in Edmonton, and so have a special connection to the city and your loved ones who live there. Perhaps you’re using Edmonton as a gateway to Alberta and BC’s great nature. With a few national parks within driving distance, Edmonton could be the perfect base for an adventure elopement!

Whatever the reason, we want to help you plan the best Edmonton elopement. Keep reading for our top 7 elopement tips for Edmonton couples! 

elopement couple kissing, plan your elopement in Edmonton
by Clint Bargen Photography

1. Consider the season

We don’t have to tell you that the weather in Edmonton can be challenging to put it lightly. You don’t want to be fending off mosquitoes, running from thunderstorms or getting frostbite during your outdoor elopement in Edmonton! But any season in Edmonton can be beautiful and work for your elopement, as long as you’re prepared.

In summer, prepare for larger crowds at popular outdoor spots, hot days and, unfortunately, mosquitoes. Make sure you’ve got sunscreen, bug repellant and a shady spot to rest. Luckily with Edmonton’s long summer days, you can elope earlier or later in the day and still have lots of sunlight (without the heat or crowds). We love an early morning elopement!

In winter, you’ll want to protect yourself from the harsh elements. Bundle up warm and give yourself lots of time to drive safely to your elopement location. An indoor venue is probably the best way to go for a winter Edmonton elopement. And if it’s surprisingly balmy, you can always take elopement photos outside!

2. Decide where to elope in Edmonton

There are so many incredible places to elope in Edmonton! A few awesome spots include:

  • The Foundry Room
  • River Valley Parks
  • The Prairie Creek Inn
  • University of Alberta campus
  • Muttart Conservatory
  • Citadel Theatre
  • Rainbow Road on Whyte Avenue
  • Forest Heights Park
  • Kinnaird Park
  • Skyline Lookout near Gallagher Park
  • Your favourite coffee shop, the restaurant where you had your first date or your own backyard!

Or, take your Edmonton elopement on the road and tie the knot in Banff National Park or Jasper National Park. Both are about a four hour drive from Edmonton, so you can make a wedding weekend out of it! You could also consider eloping in Banff or Jasper from Calgary.

Keep in mind that some Edmonton elopement venues will require a fee, permit or permission to use for your nuptials. While we always recommend you look into the local rules and follow them, some couples do choose to elope in public places, like parks, without permits.

Need more location inspo? Check out this post on Edmonton wedding venues! 

wildflowers in Edmonton, location for an Edmonton elopement or Edmonton wedding photos

3. Get your Alberta marriage licence

You can’t elope in Edmonton without a marriage licence – at least not if you want your elopement to be legal! Check out our guide to getting your marriage licence in Alberta for all of the details.

Only the couple getting married can apply for the marriage licence; this isn’t something your officiant, elopement planner or best friend can do for you. In Alberta, you will need to apply for the licence together at a registry agent office. You’ll provide information about yourselves and your parents, affirm affidavits, provide ID, sign and pay for your licence. The current cost for an Alberta marriage licence is a $40 government fee plus additional registry agent fees, for a total around $80.

Your licence is valid for three months from the date it’s issued and there’s no waiting time between getting your licence and getting married. We suggest getting your marriage licence 4-6 weeks in advance, just in case there are any issues. Pro tip: Put your wedding rings on top of your licence so you don’t forget it on elopement day!

4. Make sure you have everything you need to elope in Edmonton, Alberta

What else do you need to elope in Edmonton, Alberta? We’re glad you asked! To elope in Edmonton you need:

That’s it! Everything else – like rings, photography and fancy outfits – are just fun extras. If you don’t have anyone who can witness your Edmonton wedding ceremony, reach out to your officiant. At Young Hip & Married, we’re happy to provide witnesses for your elopement for an additional fee.

Young Hip & Married elopement ceremony ring exchange
by Keely Rae Photography

5. Add any extras to your elopement experience

So you’ve got the elopement essentials, but now you want to add a little extra? We get it. Just because you’re eloping doesn’t mean you can’t have some wedding day flair!

Besides the two witnesses necessary to observe your ceremony and sign your licence, you may want to invite additional guests to your Edmonton elopement. Our Intimate Elopement package allows for up to 10 guests, while our Intimate Elopement Plus package allows for up to 20. You may also want to add more vendors to your elopement day, such as a photographer, videographer, hair and makeup artist, live musician, etc.

To make your elopement feel a bit more special, consider adding a few more wedding-y touches. Many elopement couples like to dress up in fancy outfits (you don’t necessarily have to wear a white dress or black tux!), exchange rings, carry or wear florals, and write their vows in keepsake vow books. Depending on your venue, you could also set up some decor, include a champagne toast or cut a mini wedding cake post-elopement.

6. Celebrate your Edmonton elopement

Just because you’re getting married in a small ceremony doesn’t mean you don’t deserve to celebrate! You can choose to host a huge post-elopement reception with all of your friends and family, celebrate just the two of you, or do something in the middle when you share your elopement with a smaller group of loved ones.

The nice thing about an elopement is because the ceremony is so short, you can spend the rest of the day doing exactly what you want to do to mark the occasion. If you’re eloping out in nature, spend the rest of the day hiking, kayaking or taking in the view. If you’re eloping in the city, hit up your favourite museums, bookstores or see a show. Go on a photo shoot through the city, plan a staycation at nice hotel, or treat yourselves to dinner at one of Edmonton’s best restaurants, like The Butternut Tree, Sabor or Bundok.

elopement couple exchanging vows
by John Bello Photography

7. Book your Edmonton elopement today!

Our best tip for eloping in Edmonton? Booking your Edmonton elopement package with Young Hip & Married, of course! Check out our Edmonton wedding and elopement packages and meet our Edmonton wedding officiants. We can’t wait to help you get married in the best way possible in Edmonton, Alberta!

Getting married in Edmonton, Alberta but not sure where to tie the knot? We’ve got you covered! Discover 24 of the best Edmonton wedding venues from barns, farms and country-chic to modern art galleries, breweries and more. No matter your style, budget or guest list, you’ll find a wedding venue in Edmonton that’s perfect for your special day!

Edmonton barn wedding venues & farm wedding venues in Edmonton

GoHard Ranch


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Unleash your inner cowpoke, wrangler or ranch hand when you plan a country western wedding at GoHard Ranch. In addition to the perfect barn setting, you can also stay over at the ranch in tents, cabins or on the campground. Make a wedding weekend of it!

The Whitewood Barn


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Rustic meets elegant at this Edmonton barn wedding venue. Imagine 200 of your closest loved ones joining you for indoor/outdoor celebrations and settled around the fire pit as your night draws to a close. Bonus, at just 10 minutes from the airport, The Whitewood Barn is perfect if you have a lot of guests flying in for your wedding.

The Old Red Barn


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Not only does The Old Red Barn offer you a beautiful farm wedding venue in Edmonton (or just outside in Leduc County) but they also take the farm experience to the next level! Your guests can enjoy farm to table catering and an Old Fashioned mobile bar!

Country wedding venues in Edmonton

Sparrow Lane

This new Edmonton wedding venue (opened in 2022) will make you feel like you’re getting married on your palatial countryside estate just outside of the city. Imagine floor to ceiling windows, covered patios, elegant vibes and greenery all around!

Gardenview Estate

It doesn’t get more unique for an Edmonton wedding than saying I do on a little island, surrounded by water and accessible by footbridge. Follow that up with a reception under a glass tent for unobstructed views and a visit to the GMC Truck Bar, to honour your country side!

The Cornerstone

Always envisioned holding your wedding at a grand family home in the country where you can sit on the porch swing, dance under the stars and enjoy Alberta’s natural beauty all around you? That’s exactly what you’ll find at The Cornerstone! Bonus, depending on your wedding size you can book specific rooms or the entire property.

Outdoor wedding venues in Edmonton

Obsidian Ridge


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One of the most popular outdoor wedding venues in Edmonton has to be Obsidian Ridge – and for good reason! This rural venue is stunning for outdoor nuptials, with ceremony and reception services available. Don’t miss taking a photo by their iconic stone tunnel!

River’s Edge

As the name implies, River’s Edge offers beautiful views over the North Saskatchewan River that you and up to 250 guests can enjoy all day long. Their custom dome tent is the perfect place to enjoy the natural outdoor setting, rain or shine.

Pine & Pond

Imagine a cabin in the woods and now add an open air tent, twinkle lights and up to 200 of your closest friends and family. That’s what family-run Pine & Pond offers you – a day all about nature, simplicity and focusing on your marriage in a beautiful setting.

Garden wedding venues in Edmonton

Rainer Gardens

Rainer Gardens offers two different vibes for your garden wedding venue in Edmonton: a more Victorian-feel with white columns, white chairs and, of course, lots of florals or a more bohemian and rustic feel with wood benches and tons of greenery. You can’t go wrong at this stunning outdoor venue!

Hastings Lake Gardens

This stunning Edmonton wedding venue offers the perfect place for your garden party nuptials. Get married under their covered gazebo, take photos by ponds or under archways, and don’t the adorable swing! Plus, with the ability to accommodate 200 guests, you won’t have to leave anyone off your list.

Rutherford House

If you’ve always dreamed of getting married in a historic home with a cozy library, dark wood parlour and stunning garden, Rutherford House might be the perfect fit. This Edwardian historic site is perfect for smaller weddings under 55 people.

Edmonton golf course wedding venues

Edmonton Country Club

Edmonton golf course wedding venues are perfect for great parties and beautiful views – both of which you can enjoy at Edmonton Country Club (don’t worry, you don’t have to be a member to hold your wedding here!). Look out over the river valley or Edmonton skyline as you say your vows and dance the night away under a tent on the patio.

Lewis Estates Golf Course

At Lewis Estates you and up to 60 guests can enjoy an intimate reception and deliciously catered buffet while looking out over the green. Heck, why not arrive early and get in a few rounds before you say your I do’s?

RedTail Landing Golf Club

If you’re after a big party with indoor and outdoor options, RedTail Landing may be the perfect fit. With space for 250 attendees, beautiful outdoor ceremony locations and modern decor inside, you’ll be able to plan your dream Edmonton wedding!

Modern wedding venues in Edmonton

Art Gallery of Alberta

One of the best modern Edmonton wedding venues has to be the Art Gallery of Alberta, right in the heart of downtown. Imagine tying the knot in front of the iconic art gallery windows, enjoy cocktails on the terrace, serving dinner in Manning Hall and letting your guests explore the AGA exhibits.

The Creative Hive


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If your Pinterest is full of creative design ideas, The Creative Hive might be the perfect wedding venue for you. This modern, industrial space offers huge windows and a blank slate you can throw all of your ideas on. Bonus: You can also bring in your own alcohol and catering!

Glasshouse Kitchen & Bar

The perfect place for a foodie couple to tie the knot, Glasshouse not only ensures your guests will love your reception food but it also offers stunning views of Lois Hole Provincial Park. Get ready to enjoy local cuisine against a beautiful backdrop with your nearest and dearest.

Rustic wedding venues in the Edmonton area

Old Timers’ Cabin (aka Pioneers Cabin)

It probably doesn’t get more rustic than a venue called Old Timers’ Cabin! This charming Edmonton wedding venue will give you “log cabin chic” along with the ability to bring in your own alcohol and catering. String up some overhead lights and you’re ready to go!

Fort Edmonton Park

Fort Edmonton Park offers a number of Edmonton wedding venues for you to choose from, many of which are perfect for a rustic theme! Check out the Blatchford Field Air Hangar (with space for up to 600!), Clerks’ Quarters (with beautiful pine wood details), Egge’s Barn (for a rustic western feel) and Kelly’s Saloon for some fun country flair.



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Old meets new at Studio96, consistently rated one of the best Edmonton wedding venues. This once historic church now offers a rustic setting for couples to tie the knot with stunning windows and archways, a relaxing Moroccan lounge, and original, exposed brick walls (perfect for photos!).

Labyrinth Lake Lodge

Just 30 minutes outside of Edmonton you’ll find Labyrinth Lake Lodge, a beautiful outdoor venue that combines rustic charm with natural beauty. Get married in front of a floral trellis on the waterfront and end your night in front of the fire pits roasting marshmallows with your guests.

Brewery wedding venues in Edmonton

Polar Park Brewing Co.

For beer lovers who are into the industrial look, you’ll definitely want to consider Polar Park for your Edmonton wedding. This stunning venue also comes equipped with a stage and sound system, perfect for a big dance party. You also have the option to buy out the main level, in addition to the second floor event space, for larger groups.

Lone Pine Distilling

If craft cocktails are a must for your wedding day, Lone Park might be the perfect option. You can choose to host your reception in their indoor space (seating 80), their outdoor patio (seating 100) or both, allowing you and nearly 200 guests to sip delicious beverages all night long!

Planning a wedding in Edmonton? Get in touch!

Which of these fantastic Edmonton wedding venues would you want to tie the knot at? Once your venue is booked, you’ll need an Edmonton wedding officiant to get your married. Meet our Edmonton officiant team and book your ceremony package today! 

We’re thrilled to introduce you to Edmonton wedding officiant, Erin Thomas! Erin has been with Young Hip & Married for a few years, marrying couples in and around Edmonton, Alberta. You can meet the rest of our wedding officiants here and discover our ceremony packages here

Keep reading to learn more about Erin, her picks for the best places to get married in Edmonton, and her incredible advice for couples tying the knot. Take it away, Erin!

Get to know Edmonton wedding officiant, Erin Thomas

Greetings, friends! My name is Erin Thomas, and I am a pastor and wedding officiant living and working in Edmonton, Alberta. I have been marrying folks since 2017, and specifically with Young Hip and Married since 2021. As a queer, progressive pastor, it is a main focus of mine to help support people of all genders and orientations to be supported well as they seek to share life together.

When I’m not busy officiating weddings either with my day job or with YH&M, I love spending time with my three rapidly growing nephews. All of them love designing and inventing cool new ideas, developing sustainable gardening projects, or writing their own stories. As their way cool auntie, I get the privilege of sharing in their discoveries and excitement.

I also share my life with a small, seven pound Japanese chin/chihuahua cross named Piper. She’s a sweet, quiet fluff ball who comes to work with me each day, and keeps us all company. We are often found at local dog parks, enjoying the outdoors and fresh air.

Edmonton wedding officiant Erin and her dog, Piper

Like a lot of people, I discovered a new hobby during the pandemic. For the first time, I picked up a needle and thread and fell in love with feminist and subversive cross stitching! I’m having a ton of fun trying new patterns that both help me create beautiful pieces of artwork, while also speaking truth to power.

All about officiating weddings (+ advice for couples!)

For me, the best part of officiating weddings is when couples share enlightening moments. By that I mean those special instances when each person realizes that, no matter what details do or don’t fall into place, no matter how the day ultimately turns out, they are there to celebrate their new life together.

Creating a special day is important, but so is the realization that the day is symbolic of the journey forward. Once those moments happen, I find that people begin to enjoy the day more than they have been able to before.

In that same vein, one of the most challenging aspects of officiating weddings is when couples realize that perhaps the day has run away from them. With the best of intentions, they have filled the day with so many complicated details that everyone’s stress levels are maxed out. It becomes almost impossible, then, to remember why they are there or to have any kind of joy in the celebration.

When planning a wedding, it is critically important to know ourselves, our capacity to manage stress, to pivot when things are delayed or don’t turn out as planned, and to create an event that serves us rather than the other way around. Building in an intention to remove pressure from ourselves will go a long way to ensuring we can also enjoy the celebration we’re crafting.

newlywed couple holding hands, modern wedding reading

Edmonton wedding venues & getting married in Edmonton

Edmonton, Alberta has a claim to fame of having the largest stretch of urban parkland in Canada! There are over 160km of pathways and 20 major parks to enjoy, offering couples many opportunities to craft beautiful outdoor weddings near the river and within natural settings. While some park spaces are manicured, most of the river valley is cared for using natural methods so that local vegetation is preserved and nurtured.

If you’re looking for a venue outside city limits, Obsidian Ridge, Pine and Pond, or The Whitewood Barn might suit your creative tastes. If you want a creative or beautiful setting within the city, I would suggest exploring the Muttart Conservatory! It’s Edmonton’s brilliant set of indoor botanical gardens that feature seasonal flowers and plants all year round.

Another fun venue would be Fort Edmonton Park: a local heritage park with featured architecture from 1885-1920. If you prefer classic sophistication, you can’t go wrong with the Fairmont Hotel McDonald – Edmonton’s castle hotel overlooking the famous river valley. Whatever your tastes and price point might be, there is something for everyone getting married in Edmonton.

Edmonton, Alberta

Sharing wedding memories & dreams

The most memorable wedding I’ve ever officiated thus far would be my younger sister’s wedding. They city of San Francisco has been a meaningful location for both her and her spouse, so they decided to have a ceremony deep in the redwood forests. We took a vintage, open-air train to arrive at the destination, followed by a lovely dinner at one of San Fran’s many foodie restaurants near the waterfront. It was definitely an experience I’ll never forget!

If I were to create a dream wedding to officiate at, it would be at a local Edmonton independent movie theater like the Metro or the Roxy, or at Fort Edmonton Park’s old vintage movie theater. They are such fun settings, and how can you go wrong with popcorn and red licorice for your guests?

Outside of the city, I would love to officiate a wedding in the mountains around Jasper (it tends to be a wee bit less busy than Banff). Finding a remote outcropping or plateau outdoors on a nice day for a simple ceremony would be incredible! Having the wedding party relax afterwards in the Miette Hot Springs would top a busy day off just right.

Jasper, Alberta

Final words for wedding planning couples

Plan your day around who you are. Plan a day that will support you rather than demand more of you than what you have to give, financially, emotionally, and relationally.

When you start from a place of ensuring the day’s events are there to support YOU, you give yourself the gift of being able to actually enjoy the whole thing, beginning to end. It’s you – as the couple – who are the stars of the show and deserve being celebrated, not the details of the events who should be draining you of attention and energy.

Yes, weddings are big affairs that require extra time and work, but creating realistic starting points based on your self-awareness and knowledge will ground you in a really healthy space.

Thank you so much to Edmonton wedding officiant Erin for sharing more about herself, her advice for couples and her top picks of where to get married in Edmonton. Learn more about Erin and get in touch to book her as the officiant for your Edmonton wedding! 

Planning your Calgary elopement but not sure where to elope? We turn to Young Hip & Married elopement photographer and Calgary wedding photographer, Deanna Rachel, for the answer.

Below, Deanna shares her favourite Calgary elopement locations, both in and outside of the city, for couples looking for the perfect natural backdrop to their I do’s. Not only is Deanna sharing her top 10 list with us, but she’s also proving exactly why all of these elopement locations have her heart with beautiful photos!

Over to Deanna and her picks for the best places to elope in Calgary! All photos in this post are courtesy of Deanna Rachel Photography.

The best Calgary elopement locations in the city

Rotary Park

Calgary elopement in Rotary Park, Calgary, Alberta

Newlywed couple in Rotary Park, Calgary, Alberta

This park has everything – a natural park setting, incredible views of downtown Calgary and the Rockies, and a circular brick patio perfect for holding your elopement ceremony. Parking is available and this location is accessible for all guests.

Fish Creek Park

Calgary elopement location Fish Creek Park

Young Hip and Married elopement at Fish Creek Park, Calgary

Fish Creek Park is always a favourite of mine to visit. With it being such a big park, I never have a problem finding a quiet corner to utilize for elopement photos. It makes a great backdrop for your Calgary nuptials no matter the season, and has a lot of variety with its forested areas, river, and big open fields.

Carburn Park

Young Hip & Married elopement at Carburn Park in Calgary with Deanna Rachel Photography

couple in Carburn Park, Calgary, Alberta

I only discovered Carburn Park a few years ago (thanks to a YH&M couple who chose it for their Calgary elopement!). It has quickly become one of my favourite spots for photos and elopements. I love the ponds, open fields, and the proximity to the river.

Nose Hill Park

Nose Hill Park, Calgary, Alberta

Couple in Nose Hill Park, Calgary photographed by Deanna Rachel Photography

Similar to Fish Creek Park, Nose Hill Park has a lot to offer in terms of backdrops and settings. Again, because this park is so large, it’s not hard to find a quiet corner just for your intimate wedding. Being so open, it has the potential to provide really great dramatic landscape shots depending on the weather (and would make for some awesome golden hour portraits!).

Another bonus: it’s dog friendly, so it’s perfect for those who want to bring their pups along to their elopement!

Need more ideas? Check out this post for more inspiration on where to elope in Calgary! 

The best place to elope in Calgary outside of the city

Lake Minnewanka

Young Hip & Married elopement Calgary wedding at Lake Minnewanka

couple at Lake Minnewanka, Alberta

A quieter alternative to Moraine Lake or Lake Louise, but just as beautiful, is Lake Minnewanka. Did I have my own engagement photos here? Yes. Does that make me a little biased? Probably. Again, this lake is stunning no matter the season (although my favourite has to be fall – snowy mountains + fall colours are the best combo!).

Wedge Pond

newlywed couple at Wedge Pond, Alberta with Deanna Rachel Photography

Wedge Pond wedding in Alberta

Just over an hour from downtown Calgary, Wedge Pond has been a popular choice of Calgary elopement location with my couples lately, and for good reason! I love the birch trees surrounding the lake, and have been able to visit when the lake was crystal clear, providing incredible reflections in your photos.

Barrier Lake

Barrier Lake engagement, couples photos, with Deanna Rachel Photography

couple at Barrier Lake, Alberta

Another stunning location close to Calgary is Barrier Lake. I love the south end of the lake, where a sandy shoreline (instead of rocky) makes this one of the more unique mountain lakes to visit.

Peyto Lake & Bow Lake

Calgary elopement location Peyto Lake, Alberta

Bow Lake, Alberta

couple at Bow Lake, Alberta with Deanna Rachel Photography

Located off Highway 93, Peyto Lake and Bow Lake have breathtaking glacial views. The turquoise blue waters are incredible to see in real life, and are best viewed in the early morning or late afternoon. Both locations are only a five minute drive apart, so I always try to hit up both to get a variety of backdrops for your elopement photos.

Big Horn Lookout

wedding arch at Big Horn Lookout, Calgary elopement location

Young Hip & Married wedding at Big Horn Lookout, elopement

Big Horn Lookout is one of Alberta’s hidden gems. I love this location for its wide open meadow and dramatic cliffs overlooking the river. A bit of walking (10 mins or so) is required to get from the parking lot into the meadow, but once you arrive the views are absolutely worth it.

Planning a wedding in Calgary? Get in touch!

Thank you so much to Deanna for sharing her favourite Calgary elopement locations with us, plus her beautiful photography and helpful descriptions! Don’t forget to follow Deanna on Instagram and her website for her latest updates and wedding photos.

Ready to plan your Calgary elopement? Check out our Intimate Elopement + Photography package and get in touch to book your Calgary wedding officiant and photographer today! 

Did you know that in addition to wedding officiants, Young Hip & Married also has a team of elopement photographers? Meet our team, check out their work and find the perfect elopement photographer for your special day below.

Please note: This list of photographers is current as of May 2024 and we plan to update this page as our team grows. For our most up to date and available photographers, please get in touch.

To have one of our amazing elopement photographers capture your intimate wedding, book your Intimate Elopement + Photography ceremony package now! 

Meet Vancouver elopement photographer, Clint

We’ve been working with Clint Bargen on Vancouver elopements for years and couldn’t be more proud to have him on the team. Check out some of Clint’s work below:

young hip and married helicopter elopement with vancouver elopement photographer clint bargen
by Clint Bargen Photo
Furry Creek Beach & Lookout
by Clint Bargen Photo
elopement with young hip and married celebrant
by Clint Bargen Photo
by Clint Bargen Photography
helicopter elopement with young hip & married wedding officiants
by Clint Bargen Photo
by Clint Bargen Photo

What our couples are saying: 

“We had such a great experience with Beth, Clint, and the whole Young Hip & Married team for our small elopement this summer… Our photographer, Clint, was awesome to work with. He was professional but casual and friendly in a way that made us feel comfortable in front of the camera. He had great ideas for poses and photo locations, and we never felt awkward in front of the camera. We are so glad we booked with Young Hip & Married and would highly recommend them. Thank you for taking care of everything and making our special day so memorable!” – Andrea & Paul

“[We had] a simple garden wedding at Vandusen Botanical Garden, but still it was too magical. Thanks to all your preparations and efforts to make our wedding such a huge success. Another person to thank is Clint, our photographer. He was the most wonderful person who assisted us professionally about when to take our pose. He was excellent at his job. He delivered as promised and his pictures were magnificent. Couldn’t ask for any other person to take our pictures on our most memorable day.” – Reman & Myra

“We are so happy that we chose Young Hip & Married to be a part of our wedding! Clint was a great photographer to work with and was more than generous with his time and in the final photos, which are stunning and were sent to us only a few days after the ceremony! Stevan (officiant) and Clint (photographer) were highlights of the day that stood out to our guests, and as the couple getting married we really appreciated their calm and reassuring presence, which helped keep tensions low and alleviate a lot of potential stress. Highly recommended!” – Brady & Olivia

“Jane, Clint, and Rebecca were the most helpful and accommodating during the planning of our COVID wedding… We got married on the windiest day ever, but Jane and Clint were such troopers through it all. We were absolutely blown away (pun intended) by the photos we received from Clint! My hair was so wind blown and we were both cold, so we didn’t have high hopes that the photos would turn out – but we were so wrong! Clint used the surroundings to provide us with a range of photos that felt fresh and intimate. He made us feel comfortable in front of the camera and was eager to take photos wherever we wanted. All in all – we definitely recommend Young Hip & Married!” – Maddy & Jonathan

Learn more about Clint and see more of their work: 



Meet Calgary elopement photographer, Deanna

Deanna Rachel is our incredible Calgary elopement photographer, helping Alberta couples capture all of their magical intimate ceremony moments. Check out some of her work below:

calgary wedding ceremony
by Deanna Rachel Photography
young hip and married calgary wedding officiants, lgbtq friendly wedding
by Deanna Rachel Photography
by Deanna Rachel Photography
wedding vows at calgary elopement
by Deanna Rachel Photography
by Deanna Rachel Photography
wedding photo by calgary photographer deanna rachel
by Deanna Rachel Photography

What our couples are saying: 

“When we found Young Hip & Married through Google – looking at their services and packages, we knew that eloping was more our style and once we talked to them, all of our stresses were relieved. Deanna was our photographer and she did such an amazing job; the pictures turned out beautiful. Overall I suggest YH&M 100% and would suggest that anyone who wants a special and unique wedding day to speak to them and find out more. Thanks again so much to the team, we loved every minute of it.” – Olivia & Justin

“I highly recommend YHM! I want to send a huge thank you to Layne and Deanna for being so kind to us on our big day. You guys made us laugh, you were so easy to work with and we are so incredibly thankful to have found this company. YHM walked us through our vow training, they officiated our wedding AND they provided photography. I can’t recommend enough.” – Christina & Cole

Learn more about Deanna and see more of their work: 



Meet Vancouver elopement photographer, Emily

We have had the pleasure of working with Emily Nicole on Vancouver elopements for years – she was even married by YHM’s Officiant Jane! Check out more of Emily’s awesome work below:

by Emily Nicole Photos
Wedding officiant Curt with Young Hip and Married, Porteau Cove elopement
by Emily Nicole Photos
helicopter elopement first kiss
by Emily Nicole Photos
How to choose your wedding officiant
by Emily Nicole Photos
opus hotel vancouver wedding venue
by Emily Nicole Photos
intimate elopement plus photography
by Emily Nicole Photos

What our couples are saying: 

“Our experience with YH&M was great – from booking to the day of the ceremony, they were professional and made the whole experience totally stress-free. Emily, our photographer, made us feel comfortable from the get go, even though we tend to be camera shy folks! She gave us direction and made us feel totally at ease on the day, and we couldn’t have been more grateful! She provided us with a sneak peek of our photos promptly, and they turned out perfectly. Thank you YH&M, Jane and Emily for making our day so special!” – Jessica & Eric

“Young Hip & Married were amazing! They were extremely communicative and made the whole process very simple (even when COVID-19 made things uncertain). We chose the Elopement + Photography package and had so many amazing officiants and photographers to choose from. We chose Emily Nicole for our photographer and she captured the ceremony beautifully. We had an hour photography session with her after the ceremony and had so much fun – which is a big deal for 2 awkward and camera shy people! The photos are amazing and we will cherish them for years to come. We’re so thankful to have had Emily and Beth a part of our special day and we can’t say enough good things about Young Hip & Married! Thank you!!” – Caileen & Valentina

“Thank you SO SO much to everyone at Young Hip & Married! My new husband and I were visiting Canada from the UK and had always wanted something simple, stress free and intimate for our wedding. We certainly got that with YH&M! From the first email, right up to receiving the papers, everything was a breeze! We had the ‘Photography and Elopment Package’ with the wonderful Emily as our photographer and the fabulous Shawn as our officiant. Shawn made us feel totally at ease, as did Emily! Emily made a camera shy couple feel totally confident, like no one was even there! We couldn’t be happier with our beautiful photos! Our day was just amazing. Thank you YH&M for marrying us!” – Joanna & Mat

“Absolutely superb people and superb service! We had a very inspiring welcome to Young Hip and Married via Rebecca, who connected us with the best officiant ever, Jane Halton, and our awesome photographer, Emily, who brought a wonderful balance of warmth, professionalism and genuine happiness to our photo shoots. We also felt that the cost of these excellent people helping us out was very reasonable and on the whole, we would say that you need look no further for your wedding officiant and photographer needs. We’d give them 8/5 stars if we could!” – Tristan & Carol

Learn more about Emily and see more of their work: 



And check out Emily’s favourite Vancouver elopement locations, plus more of her photos, here!

Meet Vancouver elopement photographer, Erica

Did you know that in addition to being our lead elopement photographer, Erica is a co-founder of Young Hip & Married and wife to Shawn Miller, our other co-founder and lead officiant? Talk about a dynamic duo! Check out more of Erica’s work below:

Sunshine Valley Airbnb wedding ceremony with Young Hip & Married
by Erica Miller Photography
forest elopement with young hip and married
by Erica Miller Photography
elopement with young hip and married celebrant
by Erica Miller Photography
group photo at the end of your wedding ceremony
by Erica Miller Photography
beach wedding elopement, change your last name in oregon after marriage
by Erica Miller Photography
how to write a wedding vow, vow exchange in forest ceremony with young hip and married
by Erica Miller Photography

What our couples are saying: 

“The entire Young Hip and Married team were amazing throughout the entire process! We had an elopement wedding with last minute changes right up until the very last minute which they were very accommodating of. Erica, our photographer, was also amazing from start to finish. She is so talented at capturing every special moment throughout a wedding ceremony. She was so friendly and it felt like we were able to get all the photos in we wanted as well as her input on some more photos she thought would look beautiful also. She is so creative in her work! I hope to use her talent again in the future. We would highly recommend this amazing team to any couple getting married, from smaller elopement style weddings to larger party weddings as well!” – Chelsea & Marcus

“HIGHLY recommend using YHM for your big day ! We fortunately got the dynamic duo! We had Shawn as our officiant and his wife, Erica, as our photographer. The ceremony went flawlessly… As for Erica, well, I have had MULTIPLE companies approach me wanting to post/use our wedding photos because they turned out that good. Erica captured the day perfectly, she understood THE VIBE. I swoon over my wedding album and still look at it 3x a day. YHM was extremely easy to work with, from the first email I sent everything just fell into place for us without any headache.” – Richelle & Matthew

“Our photographer, Erica, was also out of this world. She was there for the entire process from the first email, showing us photos of locations and helping us decide on the perfect time. Erica even watched the weather and the tides leading up to our day to ensure the perfect day. Her genuine sincerity and the level of care that she puts into her clients and her work, is unmatched. We cannot imagine our day with anyone else. We are both pretty shy and Erica was able to direct us, without really telling us to pose, by just getting us to be ourselves and laugh; she was incredible. The photos are absolutely stunning; she captured every moment and every emotion in that moment. Our photos will forever make us laugh, cry and smile at all the detail and emotion she captured.

Everything with YHM was so seamless and stress-free, everything was planned so well and the communication was flawless. We wouldn’t change a thing about our day and we would recommend YHM to anyone who’s looking for something different, unique or personally tailored to what you had in mind – this group of people can make it happen. Thank you again, YHM!” – Shelby & Curt

“We were looking for a fun way to elope and from the second we met Shawn and Erica, they did not let us down. They made the experience light and fun and were so easygoing. It was all about us and the experience we were after. We took a helicopter tour to the top of a mountain which had incredible views. The ceremony with Shawn was super fun and the photography from Erica took our breathes away. We couldn’t recommend this company more and now we have an amazing memory to look back on with incredible pictures we hold near and dear to our hearts. If you are getting married, they are the best and they are great to work with.” – Lisanne & Brett

Learn more about Erica and see more of their work: 



Meet Vancouver elopement photographer, John

We are super excited to be working with John Bello on elopements in Vancouver. Check out his work and more about him below!

wedding officiant outfit at young hip and married vancouver elopement
by John Bello Photography
fun wedding officiant script with young hip and married vancouver wedding
by John Bello Photography
fun wedding officiant script at young hip and married vancouver elopement
by John Bello Photography
Whytecliff park Vancouver elopement with Young Hip & Married
by John Bello Photography
Deer Lake Park Vancouver elopement with Young Hip & Married
by John Bello Photography
couple portrait by john bello
by John Bello Photography

What our couples are saying: 

“The team at YH&M were very helpful and accommodating as we planned our elopement. John Bello was our photographer and was just fantastic to share our day with. He captured some incredibly breathtaking photos that we will cherish forever. We could not have asked for a better ceremony and we are grateful for the YH&M team in making that happen for us!” Jamie & Laura

“We contacted Young Hip & Married, after having looked through the website and seeing the services they offered. They responded promptly and had a photographer and officiant available on the day we wanted. Our photographer, John, was nothing short of amazing – his photographs were mind-blowing. In all, it was a perfect day and we could not have have asked for a more “us” wedding day. Thank you so much, YH&M!” – Saghar & Sebastian

“We wanted an elopement that was quick, simple, and absolutely zero stress. We messaged a couple different companies and YH&M easily stood out as the best option. They responded quickly, booked our date immediately and paired us with some amazing folks. Lauren, our officiant, is such a pure soul and John Bello, our photographer, went above and beyond expectations. Highly recommend if a memorable elopement is what you’re looking for.” – Amanda & Michael

Learn more about John and see more of their work: 



And check out John’s thoughts on representation in photography, plus more of their photos, here! 

To have one of our amazing elopement photographers capture your intimate wedding, book your Intimate Elopement + Photography ceremony package now! 

Calgary – it’s more than just Stampede and frigid cold temperatures in the winter. Calgary is a beautiful city full of hidden gems where YH&M couples love to tie the knot. Planning an elopement in Calgary but not sure where to say I do? We’ve got you covered. Below we’re sharing some of the best spots to elope in Calgary – including some of our officiants’ personal favourites.

The best place to elope in Calgary

Rotary Park

Rotary Park Calgary elopement
by Deanna Rachel Photography

Rotary Park is one of the most beautiful parks in Calgary and a great choice for an outdoor elopement. The Park is situated on the hill north of Memorial Drive and east of Centre Street in the northeast. It’s easy to see why this stunning park is one of Jodi’s favourite places to marry couples.

Fish Creek Provincial Park


Another one of Officiant Jodi’s favourite outdoor spots to elope in Calgary is Fish Creek Provincial Park. This large park has bike paths, hiking trails, golfing, fishing, beaches and lots of beautiful spots to get married.

Azuridge Estate Hotel


Azuridge Estate Hotel is the perfect luxury spot to tie the knot, says Officiant Jodi. The grounds offer lots of great options for eloping and the indoor areas are perfect in all weather.

McDougall Centre


McDougall Centre was first opened in 1907 as a school for training teachers. Today it’s a government building and the perfect backdrop for your outdoor elopement and wedding photos.

Village Brewery


If you love craft beer almost as much as you love your future spouse, why not combine both of your loves and get married inside or in front of your favourite brewery? Check out these awesome elopement photos inside Calgary’s Village Brewery.

River Cross Ranch


River Cross Ranch is located just outside Calgary and is the headquarters for the charity ROARR, helping underprivileged persons visit and experience ranch life. It can also be rented for intimate events – like your elopement!

Inglewood Bird Sanctuary


Along the bend of the Bow River, Inglewood Bird Sanctuary sits with 36 hectares of wilderness just outside downtown Calgary. The Walker House lawn is one of the most picturesque and popular places for an outdoor intimate wedding in the park.

The Lake House


The Lake House is the perfect place to elope in Calgary if you want good food, rustic elegance and gorgeous views of Lake Bonavista. While they can accommodate large weddings, there’s nothing stopping you from doing something much more intimate.

Deane House


Deane House is a beautiful historic house turned restaurant in Calgary. With lots of stunning rooms and outdoor spaces to choose from, this could be your perfect venue. For elopements, there’s a number of smaller rooms, like the Library and Garden Room, that are beautifully decorated and oh so intimate.

Annie’s Cafe


An intimate wedding calls for an intimate venue. So why not try Annie’s Cafe? It’s a quaint farmhouse built in 1905 and nearby Bow Valley Ranch Restaurant (where they also host weddings).

Where to elope outside of Calgary

Quarry Lake Park, Canmore


Quarry Lake Park is a serene mountainside beach and dog park located in Canmore, about an hour outside of Calgary. The mountain and water views are unbelievable for an elopement outside of the city, making it one of Jodi’s favourites.

Barrier Lake, Kananaskis

Also in Canmore, Barrier Lake is another one of Officiant Jodi’s favourite spots to elope near Calgary, and it’s obvious why. This man-made lake is also a great spot for nature loves to hike or enjoy water activities.

Big Hill Springs Provincial Park, Kananaskis


Big Hill Springs Provincial Park is about 40 minutes outside of Calgary and another one of Officiant Jodi’s top picks for elopement spots near the city. The unique greenery, abundance of waterfalls and bridged pathways make this a very cool place to tie the knot.

Saskatoon Farm, Winton


Saskatoon Farm is 30-40 minutes outside of Calgary in Winton, Alberta. A memorable venue and meal await if you decide to tie the knot at Saskatoon Farm. This venue is also able to host larger weddings.

Where would you want to elope in Calgary? Once you have your spot, don’t forget to book your Alberta wedding officiant! 

written by Riana Ang-Canning
feature image by Kaihla Tonai

To get married in Alberta, all you need is yourself, a willing partner, someone who can marry you (like a wedding officiant!), witnesses and an Alberta marriage licence. That’s it! Everything else, like the four-tier cake or cathedral length veil, is totally optional.

Most couples getting married have no trouble finding flowers, favours and friends to stand by their side. But when it comes to licences and certificates, they’re stumped. How does that whole legal part of the marriage actually work?

Don’t worry. We’ve got your back!

Here’s everything you need to know about Alberta marriage licences and certificates to make sure you’re actually getting legally married in Alberta, Canada!

What is the difference between a marriage licence and marriage certificate?

Before we get into the nitty-gritty, let’s quickly pause to explain the difference between the marriage licence and the marriage certificate.

The marriage licence is the piece of paper you bring to your ceremony and sign with your officiant and witnesses. You need this to legally get married.

The marriage certificate is the piece of paper you receive after your ceremony that says you are legally wed.

Got it? Great, let’s move on.

Bride and groom signing their Alberta marriage licence on the back of a groomsman who is bent over
Above and feature photo by Erica Miller Photography

How to get married in Alberta: Obtaining your Alberta marriage licence

You, the couple getting married, must obtain your Alberta marriage licence; your wedding officiant can’t get this for you. Neither can your mom, your wedding planner of your best friend. This one is on you.

You must obtain your marriage licence in the province in which you are getting married. Not the province where you live (if it’s different from where you’re getting married). Not your favourite province. Not the province where marriage licences are the cheapest.

If you live in Saskatchewan, vacation in PEI and are getting married in Alberta, you have to obtain your licence in Alberta.

Your Alberta marriage licence is valid for 90 days. Licences must be applied for in person by BOTH members of the couple with acceptable ID. There is a $40 government fee for the licence, plus additional service fees by the registry agents.

Pro tip: Call around to a few registry agents in your area to find the cheapest price. We’ve found the average cost for the licence to be about $80.

To find a marriage licence registry agent, click here.

For more info on the marriage licence in Alberta, click here and here.

Bringing your marriage licence to the wedding ceremony

You MUST bring your marriage licence to your wedding ceremony. Pro tip: keep your wedding rings with your marriage licence so you don’t forget it!

Leading up to your wedding, your officiant may ask you for some information they’ll need to complete your marriage licence. Read over your licence and ensure you have all of the info you need – for example, do you know where your parents were born? Cause the licence is going to ask you! 

Newlyweds seated at booth in restaurant signing their Canadian marriage licence
Photo by Emily Nicole Photos

What happens to your marriage licence after the ceremony? 

Phew! You did it. You got married. Congrats! Here’s what happens with your marriage licence once it has been signed by you, your officiant and your witnesses on the big day: 

Your officiant will send your signed marriage licence and all other paperwork to the provincial body where marriages need to be registered. You don’t need to worry about registering your marriage – we’ll do that for you!

Receiving your Alberta marriage certificate after your wedding

To receive your marriage certificate in Alberta, you must order it. No marriage certificate or other marriage documents will be automatically sent you.

To order your marriage certificate, you’ll need to wait 6-8 weeks after your wedding date as this is how long it takes for your marriage to be registered and for the paperwork to be processed. After the 6-8 weeks, you can download the Application for Marriage Documents and bring it to a registry agent.

If you are ordering your marriage certificate from outside of Alberta, you fill out a different application and bring it to a notary public or commissioner for oaths, or mail it in.

The licence will be mailed to you 2-3 days after you submit your order. There is a $20 government fee, plus additional registry agent fees.

For more info on the marriage certificate in Alberta, including the downloadable form, mailing address and list of registry agents, click here.

Groom in a suit and baseball caps signs his marriage licence after his beach wedding with Young Hip & Married
Photo by Erica Miller Photography

How to change your last name in Alberta, Canada

If you’re interested in changing your last name following your wedding, check out this site for some more information about how the process works in Alberta.

Get all of the paperwork you need to change your last name for just $39! 

For just $39 (as of Feb 2024, check the website for the most up to date prices), you’ll be able to choose from a list of over 750 government agencies and companies, received personalized forms and letters, and have everything you need to easily and quickly change your name.

Check out Easy Name Change to get started!

Recap: How to get legally married in Alberta, Canada

  1. Make sure you have the five essential people: yourself, your willing partner, two witnesses, and a legal wedding officiant to marry you!
  2. Apply for your Alberta marriage licence in person, with your partner, within three months of your wedding date
  3. Pay for your licence ($40 + service fees)
  4. Bring your licence to your ceremony and ensure you have all of the information you need to fill it out correctly
  5. Sign your Alberta marriage licence at your ceremony and ensure your wedding officiant is registering it for you
  6. Wait six to eight weeks after your wedding, then apply for your Alberta marriage certificate with a registry agent ($20 + agent fees)
  7. Receive your marriage certificate in the mail

Still have questions about Alberta marriage licences & marriage certificates?

If you have any other questions about your specific circumstances or the Alberta marriage licence and certificate process, please contact the following:

https://www.alberta.ca/marriage.aspx & https://www.servicealberta.ca/getting-married.cfm

If you are an international citizen, please contact your consulate for specific information. If you are getting married in another province/country, please contact the marriage licensing body in that area.

Now that you know everything you need to know about Alberta marriage licences and certificates, you’re ready to book your officiant and get married. We’ll see you at the ceremony (with your marriage licence in hand)!

PS: Getting married in Ontario or BC? Check out our marriage licence/certificate guides for those provinces!