Bourbon dry wedding update
Shelby French and Kade Baker were married last year on May 21 in an outdoor ceremony held at the home of her parents, Dr. Charles and Susie French.
Shelby had read on the Internet about an old Southern legend which told how to ensure it would not rain on your wedding day. The folklore said you had to bury a bottle of bourbon at the site the bride and groom were to be married. It had to be done one month prior to the wedding. The bottle had to be completely full and buried upside down.
April had been a very wet month with no end in sight. So Shelby thought, “Why not give it a try.” On April 21, 2016, Shelby and Kade, with their families, buried a bottle of Baker’s Bourbon about a foot and a half deep where the ceremony was to be held, behind a gate in a landscaped area in her parent’s back yard. The day of the wedding actually started off with rain. But by the time the ceremony began, it had turned out to be a perfect, beautiful sunny afternoon.
The legend also said the couple should retrieve the bottle on their first anniversary and share a drink with family and friends for fun and continued happiness.
This year, in May, Shelby finished her first year of law school. She and Kade wanted to have a little party to celebrate that milestone and their first anniversary. Family and friends came to the French’s back yard. Cassie Connors Parkins was going to take pictures. Kade was dressed in a suit. They had Mr. and Mrs. Toast glasses.
Everyone gathered at the site where they thought the bottle had been buried. Kade, his parents, Brent and Tanya Baker and friend Kade Carter began digging. They dug. And dug. And dug. One time everyone got excited when Kade hit something they thought was the bottle but was just a rock.
Nick French even brought two probes from the funeral home and stuck them in the ground but they still couldn’t find it. After about 20 unsuccessful attempts Shelby decided they were tearing up her parent’s yard too much and called off the hunt.
“Maybe rain loosened the ground and shifted the bottle,” Shelby speculated. “We wanted it to be a special memory and part of our first anniversary ceremony. It didn’t turn out exactly as we anticipated but this will certainly be a fun memory,” she continued with a warm smile. “Since we didn’t find it this year maybe it can be part of our second anniversary. It did not ruin our celebration.”
At this point no one knows where that bottle is.
But if you’re ever driving down Billville road and see a bunch of worms upright on their tails dancing, doing the moon walk and giving high fives to each other (with worms would it be high ones?), you might have, at least, figured out what happened to the bourbon.
Linda Messmer can be reached at 812-448-8725