Double red flags and rain couldn’t spoil beach wedding plans

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    BALDWIN COUNTY, Alabama (WALA) — Visitors staying at Baldwin County beaches were greeted with double red flags Friday morning, June 18, 2021 and building surf. The water was off limits to swimming, but it didn’t keep folks off the beach or from tying the knot.

It’s always risky to schedule an outdoor wedding. Even more so on the beach during hurricane season. One Arkansas couple did just that and had to make some quick adjustments to pull it off.

“The wedding was scheduled for 6:30 and we bumped it up to 12,” wedding coordinator, Leticia McLaughlin said with a nervous laugh. “What time is it? It’s 12:10 now. We’re going to make it.”

“Weddings are stressful enough as it is and then you add a tropical storm on top of it, it just amplifies it,” said the groom’s father, Charles Hall.

The wedding went off and the happy couple will have a good story to tell. The ceremony gave sightseers more than just the big surf to look at.

A few surfers went into the water today but that was about it. Some kids danced around in the shore break but stayed in the shallows. By lunch time, earlier rain bands had moved out, offering visitors a nice, rain-free window to get in some beach time.

“We booked it already, so I just say we had to keep on coming though. Go on and make it happen,” said Kodi Riley from Baton Rouge. “Luckily, the weather panned out. We had to come out here and get a little bit of the beach, so that’s a good thing.”

The Lucio family from Denver were coming no matter the weather. Friday was closing day on their new beachfront condo and they were hoping luck would be on their side.

“Six to eight inches of rain and Claudette. I hope that it’s good luck to close…have rain on your closing day like it is to have rain on your wedding day,” laughed Shannon Lucio.

If there’s any truth to that, plenty of “luck” began falling from the sky a short time later. That rain persisted into the evening hours. Lifeguards in Orange Beach and Gulf Shores are patrolling the beach, checking for problem spots and making sure folks stay out of the water. Double red flags mean it’s not just dangerous, but illegal to go into the water.

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