Couple weds in penguin exhibit at KC zoo

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Many couples celebrate their lasting love on Valentine's Day, but one area couple committed their love in a new unique way. This couple has been getting ready for their wedding day for some time, but some of the guests were already dressed in their black and white tuxedos.

The couple got married in the penguin exhibit at the Kansas City zoo. More than 50 penguins looked on as the couple made quite the memory.

The zoo hosted a contest last month to find the perfect couple to wed inside the penguin display on Valentine's Day. Then-bride-to-be Christina wrote an essay on her unique love story with her fiancé Steve, and the zoo chose them.

"It's indicative of who we are, we just think it speaks to our relationship very well," Christina said. "We weaved traditional pieces into it, so it's a good combination of being traditional and just really memorable and very unique."

"We didn't want a cookie cutter wedding," Steve added.

The couple was thrilled to share their vows with friends and family from inside the exhibit, and the penguins who call the enclosure home were welcoming hosts.

"I was really excited that the penguins were so friendly, and they came right up to us," Christina said with a smile.

Zoo staffers were also excited to offer the opportunity for the unique way to wed.

"We do take people in there on occasion, but we've never had a party like this in there before," Director of Living Conditions Sean Putney said.

The newlyweds said they already plan to visit next year on their first anniversary.

And while it was the first penguin wedding at the zoo, the staff said it certainly won't be the last.

If you too would like to party with the penguins, check out the Kansas City zoo's Wild Parties website.