JOLIET – They got married at MyGrain, and it felt pretty good.
“It was the craziest thing. I still can’t wrap my head around it,” Megan Nerger-Williams said of the series of circumstances that led to her and Lorenzo Williams being married at the MyGrain Brewing Co. brewpub on Friday instead of the Will County Courthouse.
The couple was on somewhat of a tight schedule because Lorenzo, an airman with the U.S. Air Force, was due to leave for Langley Air Force Base in Virginia on Valentine’s Day.
But it looked like the bride and groom would have to wait at least a few days after the judges left the courthouse early Friday because of the snowstorm.
Most of the wedding party of about a dozen people had gathered at the MyGrain brewpub in Union Station at about 3 p.m. before walking over to the courthouse where Nerger-Williams had been assured judges would be available to perform wedding ceremonies.
Nerger-Williams’ mother, however, had gone to the courthouse ahead of the ceremony and relayed what seemed like bad news at the time.
“My mom called, ‘Megan, there are no judges here. You can’t get married,’” Nerger-Williams said. “I said, ‘Just come over to MyGrain and have a drink. We’ll figure out our next move.’ ”
It turned out to be a good strategy.
Joliet City Council member John Gerl was at the bar waiting with his daughter for a delayed Amtrak train and heard about the dilemma.
Gerl knew a guy and made a phone call.
“I said let’s see if we can get this job done,” Gerl said, “and Judge Dan Kennedy came over and did the nuptials.”
The bride lives in Aurora, and the groom is stationed at Langley. But the two were getting married in Joliet because Will County was able to accommodate their expedited schedule for a marriage certificate.
Despite the temporary setback at the courthouse, it turned out the locals in Joliet were accommodating in more ways than one.
Airman 1st Class Williams described the people at MyGrain as “very hospitable.”
“In my mind, I said we can work this out. I can hold off for a couple of days, and we can get married Monday,” Williams said.
Instead, they have a wedding story they can tell the rest of their lives.
“Everyone was really nice,” Williams said. “I think it was a better experience than getting married at the courthouse.”
MyGrain co-owner Greg Lesiak described the wedding as “pretty unbelievable. It really looked like it was meant to be for them.”