Belleville couple's lucky numbers: 11/12/13

News-DemocratNovember 17, 2013 

Sarah Phillips and Ben Kurz considered a destination wedding, but plans changed.

"We were going to get married in Jamaica or Montego Bay," said Sarah, 23, of Belleville.

"Time, money and family considerations ended that idea," said Ben, 23.

They stood in the St. Clair County Courthouse lobby on 11/12/13, waiting for the elevator.

"We just kind of decided to get married on a weekday," said Ben.

"He thought it would be cute and an easy date to remember," said Sarah.

They weren't the only couple to feel that way. David's Bridal estimates more than 3,300 brides married on 11/12/13 -- a nearly eight-fold increase over 11/12/12.

Repeated numbers are also popular wedding dates. 12/12/12 was the last date of the 21st century with three repeating numbers.

There are 12 sequential dates in this century. The next big sequential date is 12/13/14. That's a Saturday, which may mean more weddings. If you like sequences, you might want to get busy. Your next opportunity for a wedding on such a date won't happen until 2103.

Seven weddings took place at the courthouse, not much higher than average.

Five-foot-4 Sarah wore white flowers in her long dark hair and 4-inch heels, but 6-foot-4 Ben still towered over his bride.

She wore an orange jacket over her knee-length white dress, a nod to the unusually cold day.

Sarah took off work from her job as a vet tech.

"Someone switched with me."

Ben works weekends at Pepper Lounge in St. Louis.

Both are 2008 Belleville East grads. They met through friends close to four years ago and have been engaged 2 1/2 years.

"I didn't know her in high school," Ben said. "She's just nice."

"He's pretty funny and very charming," said Sarah.

Their parents and Ben's younger brother Matthew met them on the fourth floor outside the courtroom.

She's the only daughter of Wayne and Sunja Phillips.

He's the middle son of Rose and Frank Kurz. Younger brother Matthew was on hand. Older brother Andrew lives in Colorado.

Sunja examined her daughter's manicure and smiled as Sarah showed her the wedding ring.

Tears welled up in Rose's eyes as she pinned a boutonniere on her son's lapel and handed Sarah a fragrant bouquet of yellow viking poms, sunfloers and gragant white stock flowers.

"She's just going to keep crying," said her husband.

After the wedding, the families celebrated at Longhorn Steakhouse. Their good luck stretched to the restaurant, said Ben's father

"They asked, 'What's the occasion?' 'They just got married.' Out of the blue the manager came up and said, 'We are going to pay for your dinner.'"

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