Luckier in Love


Waco couples hope to boost odds by exchanging vows on 7/7/07

By Pamela Bond

Waco Tribune-Herald

July 7, 2007

Kayla Baxley of Belton says herf iance, Heath Cummings, has no excuse for forgetting their anniversary. The couple, one of many getting married today — on 7/7/07 — picked the date because it would be easy to remember.

“Seven has been my lucky number since I was a girl,” Baxley says. “It’s just the coolest date ever.”

Baxley’s wedding will be one of an estimated 65,000 taking place nationwide on the “lucky” day, says Cindi Freeburn, vice president of public relations for David’s Bridal, the nation’s largest chain of bridal retailers.

“In Waco alone, we estimate 135- 140 brides in that area,” Freeburn says. “But those figures are a couple of weeks old. We still have more numbers coming in.”

From Monday to Wednesday, for example, the McLennan County Clerk’s office received 33 applications for marriage licenses.

“I’ve been doing this for over 25 years, and I’ve never seen a date like this in all my years in the bridal business,” Freeburn says. “I think wherever you are on the seventh, you’re going to see evidence of these weddings.”

NTiense Akpan of Waco and her fiance, Josh Covey, chose the day after a suggestion from Covey’s brother-in-law led them to research the number seven.

“[We] found that seven means completion and perfection in the Bible, especially in Hebrews, and is therefore viewed as a blessing,” Akpan says. “We were Christians, and we just felt peaceful about it. We were praying about a date — we wanted something special.”

The David’s Bridal store at Central Texas Marketplace in Waco has registered 40 brides for that wedding day, and Jo Ann’s Bridal Shop in West has seen 15 to 20, says Yvonne Nors, a saleswoman at Jo Ann’s. Belva Harvey, owner of Georgio’s Bridal and Formalwear in Waco, says she has fitted 25 brides who plan on marrying today. She says that on an average weekend, she fits four to five dresses.

“I have heard some say that seven is a lucky number and it will bring them some of that luckiness,” Harvey says. “Most people say it just sounds cool. And it only happens one time in our lifetime.”

Because of its popularity, couples getting married on 7/7/07 have usually had to plan in advance for the date. Baxleysays she started making reservations in January and learned quickly she was not alone.

“The girl I contracted with for this weekend asked about it a year ago,” says Jordan Browning, owner of Ever After, a personal buying and wedding coordinating service for brides in Waco. “They’ve been dating for seven and a half years and they’ve been engaged for a year and a half, so they waited for this date. That’s a lot of patience.”

Besides its simplicity and reputation for being lucky, the number seven has significance in many religions. In Christianity, God rested on the seventh day after creating the world, and there are seven sacraments in the Roman Catholic faith. The bride circles the groom seven times in Jewish weddings, and Buddhists believe Buddha took seven symbolic steps at birth. Seven symbolizes togetherness in Chinese culture, andthere are seven lucky gods in Japanese mythology.

In addition, Freeburn says the industry has seen an increase in weddings on or near vacation days. The second most popular wedding date this year is Sept. 1, during Labor Day weekend.

“As our society becomes more far-flung, our world becomes smaller, but it takes more time to travel,” Freeburn says. “So with the seventh I think that since the fourth is a holiday, most people plan on taking the rest of the week off to go to these weddings. I think it’s all of that — it’s lucky, all three numbers are the same and it’s near a holiday.”

Regardless of her reasons, Baxley says it will be a day she’ll never forget.

“I’m pretty lucky,” she says.

%d bloggers like this: