Couples on Wednesday got married on a date anyone could remember.
The only 12-12-12 of the century drew 15 couples to the St. Clair County Courthouse. Most said it was the unusual date that caused them to get married on that day.
Surely no one will forget their anniversary date.
"It's a unique day," said Stacey Hannah, 38, of Lebanon. He and Danielle Brown, 26, also of Lebanon, were first in line to tie the knot.
"When he asked me, I chose this day," Brown said.
The 15 couples made it one of the biggest marriage days of the year at the courthouse, topped only by Valentine's Day, a bailiff said. Associate Judge Ellen Dauber performed the majority of the marriages.
In Madison County, marriages are only performed on Fridays and no one applied for special permission to be married on this day.
At the St. Clair County Courthouse, the wedding attire ranged from blue jeans to white wedding dresses. Some couples had entire families along while a few had only the required two witnesses.
Couple No. 7, Anna Wilkins, 51, and William Gramc, 54, of Cahokia, said they have been together for 10 years. Gramc said they picked the day because it is special.
Wilkins laughed and said she added some incentive.
"The other day I said if we're not married within the next six months I'm going to give that ring to my son," she said. Gramc denied that was the incentive behind his proposal.
The marriage will be a surprise for their families when they come to town for Wilkins' daughter's graduation from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, he said.
Miranda Kennedy, 38, and Brian Holman, 40, of O'Fallon, had their children standing up with them.
When Associate Judge Vincent Lopinot helped out with a few of the weddings, he asked couple No. 4, Joe Hulliung, 44, and Julie Eichholz, 44, to present their rings. But they were already wearing their rings.
The couple is combining five children and one grandson.
"We have a Brady Bunch," she said. "We had out first date one year, 10 months and 8 days ago, off the top of my head." She remembers because it was a Super Bowl Sunday a couple of years ago.
"This date was what she had in mind to make me remember," Hulliung said.
At one point in the ceremony, Lopinot asked the couple to join hands.
"May you always go hand-in-hand through life," he said.