Couples from around the country travel to Utah to be married in 'Church of Dirt'

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Posted at 12:58 PM, Sep 23, 2021

SUMMIT COUNTY, Utah — Couples from all over the country are traveling to Utah to get married at the "Church of Dirt."

It’s not a formal church, but a clearing in the brush alongside a popular hiking trail above Park City.

The “church” consists of a rustic arbor and two rows of wooden benches. There's no electricity and only one restroom nearby at a trailhead, which does not have a flushing toilet.

What the location lacks in facilities, it makes up for with its mountaintop view.

“It’s unique, at least where we’re from, for people to come here and have that special moment,” said Taylor Bryant preceding his wedding with Halie Brinkman.

Bryant and Brinkman are both from the Atlanta, Georgia, area.

The couple met on a dating app, and when it was time to tie the knot, Brinkman discovered the "Church of Dirt" online.

What they couldn’t do online was reserve a wedding date and time. That required a trip to the site months in advance.

“It is just a reservation system of writing your name and your date on a rock or a piece of wood,” said Halie Brinkman.

A small pile of such items (all created on natural materials) is found near the "church."

Earlier this year, a well-meaning citizen created a website hoping to streamline the reservation process. However, Park City officials asked them to take the website down.

As the "Church of Dirt" is on public property, no private citizen can assume operations, so the current system will suffice it seems, so long as the system stays honorable, and the area is kept clean.

Those curious about the site should also know it’s under snow for six to seven months out of the year due to its high elevation.

Halie and Taylor’s wedding took place last Saturday.

“I think it’s a great option being kind of one with nature, you’re one with the landscape,” said Halie Brinkman before the ceremony.

This story was originally published by Todd Tanner at KSTU.