Courtney Wilks today in Hall marries her childhood sweetheart Haiden Smith, continuing what has become a family tradition of tying the knot on February 20.
Her grandparents June and Steve Allen innocently started it all off when they married in Camden on February 20, 1971, meaning today they celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary.
"That was when my father booked us in," June said, explaining how the date came about.
Then, Courtney's parents Meagan and Craig Wilks followed suit, marrying on February 20, 1999, in Canberra's Glebe Park.
"We picked it because it was mum and dad's and it worked for them, so we figured we'd give it a whirl," Meagan said.
Courtney and Haiden, of Charnwood, initially weren't going to follow the February 20 tradition. Courtney and her grandfather are very close and she wanted to get married on October 17, his birthday. But COVID-19 put a stop to that.
"We got the calendar and were looking for more dates and I was like, 'You've got to kidding me'," Meagan said.
February 20 fell on a Saturday. Perfect.
"It was like it was meant to be," Courtney, 23, said.
They then luckily found a venue, at the beautiful Gold Creek Station at Hall, managed by Craig Starr.
"We rang Craig and asked if February 20 was available and he said, 'It's the only date available'," Meagan said.
"We went, 'We'll take that'."
For June and Steve, it's a wonderful thing to see their granddaughter married on their anniversary.
"I think it's the best thing in the world. It's the best 50th wedding anniversary present we could have had," June said.
June, a dental assistant in the public service, was living in the hostel Narellan House in Civic when she and Steve were courting five decades ago. He was living with his parents in Camden and visiting June on the weekends. But with a strict curfew in place at Narellan House, Steve had to sleep in her car, across the road in Glebe Park, hence its significance to their daughter's wedding all those years later.
The couples have some sage advice for Courtney, a service ad visor at National Capital Motors, and Haiden, 25, a funeral director's assistant at William Cole Funerals.
"Just care for each other and look out for each other," Steve said.