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Love finds a way despite coronavirus threat

From at least 6 feet away, St. Pete Mayor Rick Kriseman helps one couple get married.
Kristen Shepherd marries Todd Berman on Friday on the steps of St. Petersburg City Hall with Mayor Rick Kriseman officiating from a distance.
Kristen Shepherd marries Todd Berman on Friday on the steps of St. Petersburg City Hall with Mayor Rick Kriseman officiating from a distance. [ DIRK SHADD | Times ]
Published Mar. 23, 2020
Updated Apr. 10, 2020

When Kristen Shepherd and Todd Berman’s plans to get married in New York fell through because of the coronavirus pandemic, they decided to go ahead with the ceremony in the safest way possible. Shepherd, who is the executive director of the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, called Mayor Rick Kriseman’s office and asked if he’d be willing to officiate. Kriseman agreed, and the wedding happened on Friday on the steps of City Hall. There were less than ten people in attendance and Kriseman kept a safe distance from the couple. Shepherd called it “a ray of sunshine on a cloudy day.”

Kristen Shepherd kisses her husband Todd Berman as the couple gets married on the steps of City Hall with Mayor Rick Kriseman officiating on Friday, March 20, 2020 in St. Petersburg. Coronavirus forced Museum of Fine Arts executive director Kristen Shepherd to cancel her original wedding plans, So she reached out to Mayor Kriseman to see if he would officiate her marriage to Todd Berman on the steps of City Hall, with less than 10 people in attendance and all standing six feet apart.
Kristen Shepherd kisses her husband Todd Berman as the couple gets married on the steps of City Hall with Mayor Rick Kriseman officiating on Friday, March 20, 2020 in St. Petersburg. Coronavirus forced Museum of Fine Arts executive director Kristen Shepherd to cancel her original wedding plans, So she reached out to Mayor Kriseman to see if he would officiate her marriage to Todd Berman on the steps of City Hall, with less than 10 people in attendance and all standing six feet apart. [ DIRK SHADD | Times ]