Surprise, Arizona Wedding Guide

Become a Wedding Officiant in Surprise as an AMM Ordained Minister. Learn more about getting ordained in Arizona, officiant training, wedding ceremony planning, and more.

How to Officiate a Wedding in Surprise, Arizona

If you don’t exactly know what to expect from this little city in Arizona, well, you’re in for a real surprise! Not only are the natural surroundings stunning, but you’ve also got plenty of exciting activities such as festivals and art shows to keep you busy year-round. Surprise is also just a short drive from popular destinations like the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas! 


You’re sure to have a great time, but before you get too busy planning your activities, let’s get you caught up with the legal aspects of your wedding. AMM is here to walk you through ordaining your hand-picked minister and helping you understand how to file for a marriage license. We’ll also give you tips for wedding venues and the logistics involved with that.


Let’s jump right in with the ordainment process!

Arizona Wedding Tips and Tricks

Become a Wedding Officiant

For The
Wedding Officiant

Step 1: Get Ordained with American Marriage Ministries


Arizona statutes allow for the following individuals to solemnize marriages:


“Duly licensed or ordained clergy (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.”


This includes AMM ministers! So, if you’ve been asked to officiate a friend’s wedding but you don’t have any credentials to do so, you can get ordained with us. No state registration is required, so once you finish the free ordainment process, you can start officiating weddings in Arizona today!


Step 2: Prepare for the Ceremony in Maricopa County


Now that the easy part is out of the way, you can focus on planning the wedding ceremony. Officiating a wedding is an honor but can also be a challenge. You will appreciate our wedding training pages, where we give you access to a library of information to help you plan and write your speech. Here, we cover everything from brainstorming for your speech to providing you with sample wedding ceremony scripts and so much more.


Step 3: Officiate the Wedding and Complete the Marriage License


When it comes time to sign the marriage license, remember that it’s the couple’s responsibility to obtain and complete the marriage license, but it’s the officiant’s job to return it 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 the 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.”


Once you have returned the license, your job as the officiant is done and you can sit back and relax!

Arizona Wedding

How To Get Married in Surprise

For The

File for the Marriage License from the Maricopa County Clerk’s Office


In order to obtain the marriage license, the couple must visit the local County Clerk’s office together.


Make sure that you both bring:


  • Valid government-issued photo I.D., such as a driver’s license, passport, etc.
  • $83.00 payable by cash or money order, debit card, or credit card.

After the marriage license has been issued, you are ready to get married. The couple has up to one year to use the license, but they could get married as soon as they walk out the door.

Maricopa County Marriage License Info

Important Facts to know before filing for a marriage license in Surprise, Arizona.

Issuance Office: 14264 W. Tierra Buena Ln
Fee: $83.00
Waiting Period: None
Expiration: 1 Year
Return: Within 30 Days by the Officiant

Surprise Wedding Tips and Tricks

Wedding Venue and Planning Tips

For The Couple
& Officiant

The Basics


Since Surprise is often sunny and warm, you may want to consider having an outdoor wedding ceremony and reception. Some outdoor venues include The Orchards Ranch and Heritage Campus in Marley Park and Sun City Grand. The Willow offers another beautiful outdoor space for romantic wedding photos against a backdrop of giant cacti and gently rolling desert hills.If there is inclement weather or you just prefer air conditioning, check out Kiva Club Weddings


Just make sure that when you’re booking the venue, you check for availability far enough in advance. This way, you’ll avoid possible scheduling conflicts and have more time to focus on more minor details like guest size, catering, and other venue-specific things.  




Typically, you need a car to get around town, which is true in most places throughout Maricopa County. However, if you’re coming from out of town and don’t want to rent a car, you can quickly get around using Lyft and Uber.




Surprise tends to remain warm and sunny for most of the year like the rest of Arizona. Temperatures stay in the 90s and above from April through October, but in July and August, you can expect temps to exceed 100 degrees daily. In November, it gets pleasantly cool and cloudy, with occasional rain and wind. Spring and fall are the most popular wedding seasons in the state, but if you want to score better deals on wedding venues by choosing an off-season date, choosing an indoor venue during a winter or summer month could be a good idea. 

Surprise Officiant FAQ

Surprise Officiant & Couples FAQ

For The Couple
& Officiant

Are online ordained ministers recognized in Arizona?
Yes. All online ordained ministers, including those ordained through AMM, are recognized in Arizona.


Do I need to register my ministerial credentials anywhere?
No. Arizona does not require ministers to register their credentials with the state. So, once you have been ordained, you can start performing wedding ceremonies.


After I apply for a marriage license, when will I receive it?
The same day you apply for the license. There is no waiting period in Arizona!


When should the officiant return the marriage license to the city clerk’s office?
Your marriage license is valid for use for one year from its issue date, but once you hold your actual ceremony, it must be returned by the officiant within 30 days. Otherwise, it expires!


Professional Wedding Officiant Certification Course

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Will You Marry Us? Gift Package

Who Will Officiate Your Wedding?

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Signature Wedding Officiant Package

Signature Wedding Officiant Package

Our premiere package contains everyting you need to officiate like a pro.

The Book of Wedding Vows and Ceremonies

The Book of Wedding Vows and Ceremonies

It's finally here! Timeless scripts and heartfelt vow inspiration to bring life to your ceremony.

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Sample Wedding Ceremony Scripts

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Wedding Officiant Training

Wedding Officiant Training

Everything you need to know to officiate.

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