Ramona Aveoganna and Samuel Trefon were married Wednesday afternoon at Bean's Cafe. The couple met there five years ago, and both are clients and volunteers at Bean's and Brother Francis Shelter.
Because the soup kitchen is where their friends are, and their friends are like family, it was the obvious choice for the wedding location.
Aveoganna chose July 11 for the wedding to honor her brother on his birthday. He died 18 years ago in a snowmachine accident in Utqiaġvik.
Trefon had to propose twice. The first time, Aveoganna told him he was intoxicated and to ask again when he sobered up. He did sober up, and did ask again, and she said yes.
Although both have been married before, they were like teenagers on their wedding day. Before the ceremony, the couple waited in the kitchen and Aveoganna told her future husband, "I feel nervous." He replied, "I am too."
As workers came by for hugs, Aveoganna wiped tears from her eyes.
Trefon went into the dining hall to wait as Aveoganna changed into her wedding kuspuk that was made by the Bean's Seams Sewing Club.
The ceremony was officiated by Justina Beagnyam, Bean's Cafe's client success manager, and concluded with the couple tying their wrists together with a bandana.
As they were pronounced husband and wife and kissed, friends surrounded them, showering hugs on the happy couple. The walk down the aisle to the wedding table was a slow process as the hugs continued.