Leap Year Weddings Hold Appeal for Some Couples

One of the more well-known leap year traditions, she said, is that it is a time for women to do the proposing. She said modern folklore dates the tradition back to the fifth century in Ireland when St. Bridget urged St. Patrick to allow women the right to propose. A compromise ensued, and the latter agreed to allow it once every four years, during a leap year.

Another story dates the practice to 1228 when Queen Margaret of Scotland passed a law ordering a man to accept a woman’s marriage proposal during a leap year. If he declined, he had to buy her a dress. “There is no evidence of these things being true, but it allows Americans to see this not as a manufactured custom, but something that is historical,” Dr. Parkin said.

Some couples said having a “real” anniversary every four years will remind them not to take the occasion for granted.

“Every four years, having a reason to celebrate that’s different from the years in between — that was appealing,” said Ryan Celestina, 42, a mental health counselor in Palm Beach County. He and his fiancée, Emily Grupp, 31, an I.C.U. nurse, are getting married on leap day at the Pelican Club in Jupiter, Fla.

With fewer anniversaries he feels they can “do something extravagant every four years,” he said.

Justin Sampogna, 35, a radio producer, and Katherine Stewart, 28, a training and organizational development specialist who live in Simi Valley, Calif., cherish the idea of having an anniversary every four years for another reason: “In four years it will be our first anniversary,” said Ms. Stewart, laughing. “It will keep us youthful forever.”

Sumber: www.nytimes.com