With eye-watering views and a hot-dry climate, Mesa, Arizona draws folks that appreciate a modern city that hasn’t forgotten the desert it came from. With its rich Native American and Frontier history, this desert city features Spanish architecture and Western vibes, rustic farmyard venues, and everything in between and every conceivable budget (did you know that you can book large covered event spaces in the cities public parks for just a few hundred dollars per day, or much less if you’re a smaller crowd!).
But, you probably have a good idea of what Mesa has to offer, so let’s jump right into the boring stuff, because that’s why you’re here… to learn about what you need to do to perform a legally binding wedding ceremony in Mesa, and what to do with that pesky paperwork.
Once you make it through that part, we can pivot to the fun stuff again, like what to keep in mind when planning a wedding, what spaces are available, and what makes this such a great city to tie the knot in.
Let’s start with the ordainment process. According to the Arizona marriage law, the following persons may perform wedding ceremonies: “Duly licensed or ordained clergy.” This designation includes ministers, elders or other persons who by the customs, rules and regulations of a religious society or sect are authorized or permitted to officiate at marriage ceremonies.
If you aren’t a duly licensed or ordained clergy we can take care of that in just a few minutes Get ordained with AMM, which puts you in the priest or minister category. The process is free and, and empowers you to legally perform weddings anywhere in the US!
Now that the easy part is out of the way, let’s talk about preparing for the wedding ceremony itself. Being asked to officiate a ceremony is an honor, but it can also feel like a lot of pressure. Don’t worry, after more than half-a-million wedding ministers, we’ve seen it all and prepared training materials that will make you look like a Rockstar up there! Check out our wedding training pages, which are a library of information to help you prepare for your first ceremony and ensure that it goes smoothly.
Here you can find everything from sample wedding ceremony scripts, to brainstorming prompts, tips for preparation, and more.
When it comes time to sign the marriage license, it’s the couple’s responsibility to obtain and complete the marriage license, and it’s the officiant’s job to sign and return the marriage license to the county clerk’s office.
According to the Maricopa County website, “A marriage license must be issued prior to the ceremony taking place, signed at completion of the ceremony, and returned by the officiator not more than 30 days after the ceremony has taken place in order for the license to be recorded.”
So, make sure to add “return license” to your to-do list following the ceremony.
As far as the government is concerned, all the couple has to do is meet the requirements for marriage and file for their Marriage License from the Maricopa County Clerk's Office
Want to move things along a little bit faster? You can print the Marriage License Application Form. When you go to the clerk’s office, remember that both members of the couple must be present.
When you go, just remember to bring:
Once the marriage ceremony has taken place, a portion of the signed marriage license must be returned to the clerk's office where the license was obtained. The newly married couple keeps the remainder of the original license for their records.
Here’s the quick facts to help you through the application process. Maricopa County Clerk of the Superior Court locations:
Waiting Period: None
Expiration: 1 year
Return: Within 30 days by officiant
Mesa Arizona is a wedding planner’s dream in large part because it’s got a variety of venues, it’s clean and spacious, and well connected to other Arizona cities and the rest of the country. Put another way, it’s a lot less hassle than planning a New York City wedding, and that’s reflected in the fact the weddings here cost much less than they do in other large cities and towns in the country.
Just to give you a jump-off point into the venue options available, the Antique Wedding House, down by the municipal court, is a great example of what a lower-cost venue has to offer. It’s described as “great value,” and offers all-inclusive packages that help you keep costs under control.
On the other end of the spectrum, Mesa is home to the Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Resort and Spa, where you’re going to get those million-dollar views and probably pay for them as well, if that’s the direction you want to go (which is great too if you’ve got the budget!).
Mesa summers are sweltering and dry, the winters are cool, with skies clear year-round. It’s a desert climate so plan accordingly. If you’re having a summer wedding, make sure to plan the ceremony later in the day, when temperatures are more manageable, or just book something indoors. Winter Fall and Spring are all much more pleasant, and the cool crisp high-desert air is half of the appeal!
Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport is just west of Mesa and is one of the busiest airports in the country, so your guests won’t have a hard time getting in. Wikitravel warns that travelers that are prone to airsickness should book flights that arrive either before noon or after sundown. That’s because the cities high elevation, hot sun, and spring winds combine to produce thermals can whip up some extreme turbulence.
Once on the ground, the Valley Metro Light Rail runs through downtown Mesa, connecting to Tempe and Downtown Phoenix. From Sky Harbor Airport, travelers can take the PHX SkyTrain to get into town.
The wedding officiant is responsible for returning the marriage license after the ceremony in Mesa Arizona. After the ceremony is completed, and the license is signed, the officiant has 30 days within which to return the license.
Arizona state marriage law requires that at least two witnesses be present at the ceremony.
Both applicants must be at least 18 years of age or older, with valid proof of ID.