Portland Parks 2019 Wedding Lottery Opens This Month

Parks and Rec calls it a "fun and equitable" way for wedding planners to book their first pick

Mount Tabor (Christine Dong)

Trying to plan a wedding in a Portland park for any time between March and December of 2019? It's a gamble.

Portland Parks and Recreation has opened its wedding lottery for next summer's slate of outdoor nuptials.

Registration for the lottery opens Monday, Nov. 19 at 8 am and is open until Thurs. Dec. 13 at 5 pm. Those who register will be assigned a number to be randomly drawn from a big glass bowl on Dec. 14, and reservation requests will be taken in that order.

Desired locations and dates are not guaranteed, but Parks and Rec states their staff will "do their best to find a suitable alternative."

But why the lottery system?

The lottery system started in 2017 when the Portland Parks and Rec's Customer Service Center moved to a smaller location due to extensive repairs being made at their original Portland Building location. This smaller location lacked the capacity for a typical wedding registration line, and so the lottery was born.

The first lottery, which was held in Nov. 2017 for 2018 reservations, yielded "positive results" according to the Portland Parks and Rec website and so the bureau decided to continue with the lottery this year as well.

Applications cost $117.

After the lottery, wedding planners can still book a ceremony on any of the dates that remain unclaimed.

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