Hutchinson For many, the state fair can create romantic memories - a first kiss on the Ferris wheel or a funnel cake shared between two. But the Kansas State Fair wants to create a more memorable day for one lucky couple.
The fair plans to give away a free wedding amid the bantering of carnival workers - complete with a dress, flowers and a Ferris wheel backdrop.
The giveaway, called "Marriage on the Midway," will be at 10:30 a.m. Sept. 8 and is sponsored by the fair, local radio stations KHUT 102.9 and KHMY 93.1 and North American Midway Entertainment.
The package includes $200 toward a dress, flowers, cake, a photographer, the judge as well as midway food and rides for the couple and 100 guests after the wedding, said Lori Mulch, assistant fair manager.
The public can vote for their favorite of the nine finalists featured on the fair's Web site until Aug. 29. A winner will be announced Aug. 30.
Those couples include Hutchinson residents Jackie Zapata and Jacob McCray. Zapata wrote on the Web site that she met her future husband while she was taking tickets at the fair.
"I wasn't expecting or looking to meet a guy I would fall in love with and want to spend forever with," she wrote. "It would be so romantic to get married at the place we met."
Other couples include Steve Huston and Terra Carolee Hasker, Overland Park; Sarah and Joseph Knotts III, Wichita; Jane and Michael Dee Patrum, Dodge City; Stephanie Rich and Chris Alan Wornkey Jr., Hutchinson; Savannah Ruark and Jeremy Gasperson, Pratt; Gayle Salsbury and Jessie, Topeka; Randy Wooderson and Kathy Varney, Wichita; and Erin Wright and Adam Blake Griffith, Lenexa.
Three of the couples already are married and want to renew vows.
Wright wrote that she and her husband had a rush wedding three years ago after she became pregnant.
"I have always wanted to wear the white dress, and he wanted his family to be there to share in our special day," Wright said. "We would truly love this once-in-a-lifetime redo."