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Theme park hosts lucky nuptials

Waukegan News Sun

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July 07, 2007

GURNEE -- When she filled out the application for Six Flags Great America's offer to have seven couples either get married or renew their vows on 7/7/07, Kamryn Schill said the good-fortune significance of the date didn't register with her as much as the opportunity to renew her vows and ride roller coasters with her friends and family in one fell swoop.

"I was getting online to check out the hours for that weekend because we had company coming in from out of town, and I saw the link for 'Thrilled Ever After,'" she said Friday morning, less than 24 hours before she and husband, Jeremy, would join six other couples for the lucky-seven nuptials event.

"I just clicked on it and it said to write an essay on why you think your family would be a good pick," she added. "I honestly never thought we'd be selected -- I almost didn't open the letter when it came because it looked like junk mail or something."

But the Schills were invited to come to Carousel Plaza bright and early today for a ceremony scheduled to take place, in keeping with the numerology involved, at either 7 a.m. or 7:07 a.m.

According to Great America spokeswoman Marissa Visagie, the Schills will be among three couples renewing their vows before a justice of the peace, while four couples will actually be joined in holy matrimony.

The brides, both new and veteran, will assemble in Hometown Square starting at around 6:30 a.m. and will proceed to the carousel area via trolley. Asked if she was accustomed to getting up that early on a Saturday, Schill said, "My Navy husband might be, but not me. I thought 5 o'clock only came once a day."

Each of the early-rising couples were allowed to invite 20 guests, and everyone is invited to stay for a day in the park. In between the ceremony and Great America's 10 a.m. opening, the wedding parties will be treated to a reception at one of the park's food outlets.

While 7/7/07 has been designated as lucky, Schill said she feels her good fortune actually began on the day she sent in her "Thrilled Ever After" application -- 6/18/07, which happens to be her daughter's birthday.

In the essay, Schill said she basically wrote that "12 years ago, I married my best friend, and we're still best friends. The only things that have changed for us is that we added two kids."

The Schills have followed one another to several ports of call for Hospital Corpsman Jeremy Schill, from Georgia to Italy to Virginia and to two different stops at Great Lakes Naval Training Center.

It might also be considered a stroke of luck that their current home at Great Lakes is within a short drive of a major theme park since, Kamryn Schill said, "my husband is way into roller coasters."

In other words, she probably doesn't have to spring for a vow-renewal gift on 7/7/07.

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