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  1. Life & Culture

Riding an elephant to meet his bride

Ajay Pallegar made a grand entrance to his wedding at the Vinoy in St. Petersburg on Saturday.

Hundreds of wedding guests danced in the streets, leading the way for Pallegar, atop an elephant, to meet his bride, Sneha lokesh, for their morning wedding.

Dog walkers and other and passersby smiled and took pictures. Loudspeakers from a van and a live drummer provided the music. The elephant wore traditional Indian decorations in honor of the event.

The elephant was first blessed before the groom's family and friends led the way in celebratory dance to the Vinoy. At the hotel's entrance, Pellegar was greeted by the bride Sneha 's family. Pellegar, 32, is a lawyer from St. Pete; Lokesh, 29, is a doctor.

Traditional southern Indian weddings last more than two hours. Elephant entrances are uncommon even in India. Most often, grooms enter on horses. The elephant procession is considered a privilege.