A couple who attended monthly dances for people with special needs, decided to acknowledge their relationship with a wedding ceremony.
Yuri Goga and Ashley Mclemore, who met six years ago, have been attending monthly dances of the social group, Round Up Special Needs Dances. The wedding ceremony was held July 9.
“We have given them what we could of a fairy tale wedding. In real life they said they might not be able to get ‘really married’. To them it was definitely real,” said Ashley’s mother, Wendi Williams.
They don’t have a marriage license, but they have a commitment to each other, and live together alternating weeks between each other’s homes, said Williams.
The couple followed up the wedding ceremony with a celebration party at the next monthly Round Up meeting, Aug. 2.
The Round Up Special Needs Dances group is for individuals with special needs, ages 14 and up. The group was formed by Denise Myer Nowak, whose 32-year-old son has autism.
“There are sometimes limited opportunities for him to socialize,” Nowak said.
“I decided I would go in and speak to the owner of Round Up, Dewey Reese, and ask if he would be interested in hosting dances for this community. He was very open to it and said yes.
The group meets the first Tuesday of the month, 6-8:30 p.m. at Rockin Country Music Roundup, 5050 Dixie Hwy. in Waterford Township. The Roundup is open to the public, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. For more information, find Rockin Country Music Roundup on Facebook.
The monthly dances feature a DJ spinning a large range of music. There is a $3 entry fee for participants. Guardians and caregivers receive free admission. There is a snack bar to purchase hotdogs and beverages.
Some of the attendees have taken dance lessons at Fred Astaire Dance Studio.
The next dance meetup is Tuesday, Sept. 6, with no registration needed. For more information, find Round Up Special Needs Dances on Facebook at facebook.com/groups/571363546989406.