Couple renews vows, builds home on home plateWritten by Casey Harper | | firstname.lastname@example.org
The announcer called out the bridesmaids and groomsmen one by one as they trotted out of the dugout in their jerseys before the Mud Hens game.
Finally the voice boomed, “Pitching for today’s event, the groom Joe Wine, and batting ninth, today’s catcher, the bride … Barb Wine!”
The Wines renewed their vows June 1 on their 20th wedding anniversary at Fifth Third Field. They renew their vows every five years at a different baseball game, making this the fourth time they have repeated “I do.”
“It was just so exciting that we were getting to do this the way we wanted,” Barb said. “It was all kind of a blur and all happening so fast at the same time.”
The Wines married in 1993 at a softball field where Joe played regularly.
“When I met him I didn’t like sports and he played softball three nights a week plus weekends,” Barb said. “When he suggested it I said, ‘Well,’ I’m not going to have to worry about him not showing up and standing me up because he’ll be there anyway.’”
Barb and Joe renewed their vows after five years at a Kalamazoo Kodiaks game in uniforms loaned by the Kodiaks.
After five more years, the Battle Creek Yankees let them renew their vows between games of a doubleheader. For their 15-year anniversary, the Wines went down to Florida to renew their vows at a Jacksonville Suns game. Their latest baseball ceremony was their recent 20th wedding anniversary at the Mud Hens game with Pastor Jeff Selph “officiating.”
“We got married on a softball diamond and every five years we moved up,” she said. “It’s been exciting. Each time is a little bit more exciting than the time before because it’s a little bit bigger.”
The Wines carried the baseball theme into the smallest details. They had the same flower girl from 20 years ago. Wine wore white shoes with red laces to look like a baseball and they both had baseball-themed rings. Barb wore a miniature Mud Hens hat with a bill in the front and a veil in the back.
“I thought it was pretty awesome,” Joe said. “The ceremony went really smooth. They let me throw out the first pitch.”
The Wines met on a blind date and at first Barb was skeptical about the match. Luckily for the pair, Joe didn’t strike out.
“The whole idea of a blind date was ‘What kind of a loser is she going to introduce me to?’” Barb said. But I kept him and here we are 20 years later.”
They hope to celebrate 25 years of marriage by renewing their vows at a Detroit Tigers game.
“It’s like the cherry on top,” Barb said. “If you don’t get the cherry on top it’ll still be exciting and fun but to us the Tigers is what it’s leading up to.”