SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- It was nine years ago when Roy Salazar met Pamela Jimenez in Summit through a mutual friend, as they were all heading to a party.
There was an instant bond, sparks flew, and the East Second Street couple are now the proud parents of two children, 10-year-old Ethan and 5-year-old Chelsea. But amidst all the hubbub of raising a family and making ends meet, there has always been one thing missing: A wedding.
“Things have been good for us over the past few months, so we figured it was about time that we were married,” Pamela said.
For Pamela and Roy, the moment was 2 p.m. on Monday, when they took their two children to Scotch Plains Town Hall to finally make it all official. They didn’t know their justice of the peace – recently-elected Mayor Josh Losardo – had never done a wedding, nor that a wedding hadn’t been performed at town hall in more than four years.
“The mayor told us it was his first wedding,” Pamela said. “And then we said it was our first wedding, too!”
And, so, at the stroke of 2 p.m., the couple stood under the township seal. There were some light jokes, some nervous laughs and then, as Pamela’s brother and sister served as witnesses, the couple began to exchange those long-awaited vows.
“That’s when I started to tear up,” the bride said. “And then the mayor started to tear up. It was all very sweet.”
Mayor Losardo said he spent a few days practicing the wedding ceremony, admitting he was more stressed than the couple.
“I practiced that ceremony as much as I could,” he said. “I wanted to make the day as special as possible for Pamela and Roy.”
After the ceremony, bride and groom met their extended family at a Mexican restaurant in Weehawken to continue the big celebration.
Plans are now in the works for the couple to be married in a church, post pandemic. The mayor is sure to be on the guest list, Pamela said.
Meanwhile, Mayor Losardo learned this week that another couple asked for his services, with the next wedding set for April 9.
There is a $150 fee for Mayor Losardo to preside over weddings; all revenue collected will be used for local charitable giving. Interested couples should call Britney Marvel at 908-322-6700, ext. 313 to schedule a date, with weekdays preferred. Fees are waived for those who meet special financial circumstances.
“We really loved our wedding. The mayor was really funny and really nice; I recommend him,” Pamela said, with a laugh. “He made us feel so
comfortable. I love him.”