How to Officiate a Wedding in Springfield, Illinois

A guide for officiating weddings and planning ceremonies in the Springfield Illinois

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WITH AMM

Officiate a Wedding in Springfield, Illinois as an AMM Officiant!

It's wedding time in the Long Nine

You don’t need to move your wedding festivities to the “Big Onion” or a kitschy destination-venue in the sticks in order to have the Illinois wedding of your dreams -- the state’s capital has a lot to offer couples-to-be right in town. But if you’re a Springfield native, you already know that.

 

Whether you’re a long-time Illanoian or you’re marrying into the Land of Lincoln, or you’ve been asked to officiate an Illinois wedding, you’ll be glad you read our Springfield wedding guide. We have all the need-to-know info about tying the knot in Sangamon County -- from the legal to-dos, to the best venues, to getting your best friend the credentials to legally perform your ceremony!
 

For The
Wedding Officiant

How To Officiate a Wedding in Springfield

STEP 1: Get ordained with American Marriage Ministries

 

Let’s start with getting your officiant-of-choice ordained. In Springfield, an officiant can be a judge, a religious leader or an individual who is ordained by a nondenominational organization. 

 

If you have been asked to perform a ceremony but don’t have the credentials, you’re come to the right place. You can get ordained with AMM for free in just a few minutes.

 

In Illinois, ministers are not required to register their credentials, so once you’ve finished the online ordination process, you’re legally capable of performing weddings in the state! But before you perform your first ceremony, you have some other prep work to do.

 

STEP 2: Prepare for the Ceremony in Sangamon County

 

Now that the easy part is out of the way, we can help you prepare for the wedding ceremony itself. Being asked to officiate a ceremony is an honor, but can feel like a lot of pressure. You will appreciate 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.

 

STEP 3: Officiate the Wedding and Complete the Marriage License

 

When it comes time to dealing with the marriage license, it’s the couple’s responsibility to obtain it from the county clerk’s office, but as the officiant, your job is to help the couple fill it out correctly, notarize it and return it to the county clerk’s office for them after you’ve performed the ceremony!

 

You have 10 days to bring the completed marriage license to the county clerk’s office at 200 S. 9th Street after the wedding. If it helps motivate you, reward yourself afterward with a horseshoe sandwich and a pint at Boone’s while you’re downtown -- you earned it!
 




For The
Couple

How To Get Married in Springfield

File for the Marriage License from the Sangamon County Clerk's Office

 

Now let’s turn our attention to the couple’s responsibilities. Getting married in Springfield is super easy.

 

You can start the application process online to save yourself from spending a lot of time in the county clerk’s office, but both parties must be present to pick up the application in person.

 

The office is located in the Sangamon County Complex at 200 S. Ninth Street, Room 101, Springfield, IL.

 

When you go, just remember to bring:

 

- Valid, state-issued IDs (driver’s license or Passport)
- $75 (check, money order or Visa, Master Card, Discover or American Express)

 

...That’s it! When you and your partner head down, you’ll be issued your marriage license and will have 60 days to hold your ceremony before it expires. Your officiant will assist you in completing it.
 

Sangamon County Marriage License Info

Issuance Office: 200 S. Ninth Street, Springfield, Room 101
Fee: $75 
Waiting Period: 24 hours
Expiration: 60 days
Return: by Officiant
 

Wedding Venue and Planning Tips

The Basics -- When choosing your wedding date, make sure to take note of Springfield’s major annual events, like Paint the Street Fest in June, Abe Fest in July, and the State Fair in August. Even if your venue isn’t right next door to one of these festivities, hotel accomodation rates will be higher, traffic will be more intense and parking will be scarce these days. It’s better to avoid them all together, if you can, in favor of a day that isn’t going to attract huge crowds and present obstacles for your guests to make it to your wedding on time.  

 

One other important thing to note when planning your wedding in Illinois: if you obtain your marriage license at the Sangamon county clerk’s office, you also need to host your wedding in county lines. If you’d rather venture outside of Springfield to get hitched, you definitely can! You just have to apply for your marriage license in that jurisdiction. That being said, there are plenty of lovely wedding venues right in Springfield. We’re sure you’ll find one that suits your fancy.

 

If you’re envisioning a traditional, timeless event, the Illini Country Club, Long Bridge Golf Course, or Panther Creek Country Club all serve up that sophisticated elegance that makes for the perfect backdrop for any couple’s special day. 

 

For a more casual indoor option, definitely check out Arlington’s Pub. This more than one hundred-year-old venue emanates warmth and charm, and has a bit more homey feel that’s perfect for a low-key couple.

 

However, if you’re down for a more unique setting, Springfield has some awesome alternatives. Did you know that you can tie the knot at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum? You can choose between renting the library or the museum itself. Our choice would be the latter, where you and your guests can party down in front of a giant replica of the whitehouse.

 

There’s one other fun, unexpected option, which is perhaps our favorite choice -- the Washington Park Botanical Garden. Its beautifully manicured grounds are home to more than 12,000 species of plants right in the middle of Springfield. It makes for an incredibly romantic setting for your ‘I do’s,’ especially in the springtime, when the fragrant roses are in bloom. Just imagine the stunning photo opportunities! Enough said.

 

Transportation -- If you’re attending a wedding in Springfield and you don’t have a car, there are plenty of options for getting around. Sangamon Mass Transit District (SMTD) operates its 17 regular bus routes between Monday and Saturday. If the wedding venue is located centrally in town, this is a convenient and cheap option to get around. The SMTD’s website has all the need-to-know info about rates and routes, as well as any service alerts that you’ll want to know about. Of course, you can always rely on Lyft and Uber in Springfield if you don’t want to bother with figuring out the public transit or renting a car.

 

Weather -- Illinois is known for its crazy weather. Floods, tornadoes, blizzards, lighting (oh my!) It has cold, snowy winters, warm summers, unpredictable springtimes, but beautiful autumns. That’s why most couples choose to get married during the summer or fall here, which is also unfortunately when the venues will be charging their peak rates. If you’re a bit of a gambler at heart, you can always pick a date outside of wedding season and score an amazing deal. If you do, we recommend that you look into buying wedding insurance (it’s cheap!) and make sure if you’re planning an outdoor reception that your venue has alternative spaces in case of unexpected weather.

GET ORDAINED
WITH AMM

Officiate a Wedding in Springfield, Illinois as an AMM Officiant!

Weddings in Springfield FAQ

  • Do my partner and I both need to be present to pick up the marriage license?

    Yes, you will both need to be there to pick up the license so that the clerk can check your IDs.
     
  • Do we need to have our social security cards to apply for a marriage license in Springfield?

    You don’t need your cards, but you do need to know your social security numbers to fill out the application.
     
  • How much time do we have to get married once we’ve obtained the marriage license?

    You have 60 days to use the marriage license (i.e., to hold the ceremony itself) until the marriage license expires.
     
  • How do we get a copy of our marriage certificate?

    Once your officiant completes and signs the marriage license and returns it to the county clerk’s office, they will record your marriage and can issue a certified copy, which costs $25. 
     
  • How do I change my name after I get married?

    Take the certified copy to the Secretary of State to change your name on your driver’s license or state ID and then to the Social Security Administration to change your name on your social security card. 





     
GET ORDAINED
WITH AMM

Officiate a Wedding in Springfield, Illinois as an AMM Officiant!