By: CJ Rena Johnson
Getting Married in
the Mud at the Hatfield-McCoy National TrailFest
Richard Lafferty and Cindy Shriner
Roses for the Bride
Rick, Cindy and Family
Wedding Couple Cleaned up
With This Ring, I Thee Wed
You May Kiss the Bride
The 9th Annual Hatfield-McCoy National
TrailFest had a lot of great things to offer
this year, but one thing that none of us
expected to see was a wedding in the mud pit!
Richard Lafferty and Cindy Shriner were
officially married October 10, 2009 in the mud
pit just before the mud bog competition on
Saturday night. Even though it was not planned
prior to the event, it was still a huge success
in the end. That was the second wedding,
according to my source, that has taken place at
the Hatfield-McCoy Annual TrailFest. The one
last year took place out on the trail. I wonder
if this is becoming a trend with TrailFest.
I interviewed them to find out just what prompts
someone to get married in this out of the
Q. How did the two of you meet?
Cindy: We met at my sister Sherry’s house at a
Super Bowl Party. I had asked Sherry to give
Rick a call and tell him that his new girlfriend
was waiting to meet him. We met and actually
starting dating on February 14. We have now been
together for nine years.
Q. How did each of you get into ATVing?
Rick: I have been into ATVing all my life. You
don’t live in Bakers Summit and not own an ATV.
Cindy: I started riding when I met Rick.
Q. What made you two want to get married at an
ATV event and specifically in the
Rick: We both thought it would be cool to get
married at an event with so many people that
love the same sport we do. We had heard about
another couple getting married on the trails
last year and wanted to get married in the mud
pit so it would be different.
Q. Where are the two of you from?
Cindy: We are
both from Bakers Summit, PA
Q. Do you always attend the Hatfield-McCoy
National TrailFest, or was this your first time?
Rick: This was the first time for both of us. We
have every intention of coming back next year to
celebrate our 1st anniversary.
Q. What are your occupations?
Rick: I am an
inspection mechanic for Longs Tire of
Cindy: I am a
shrink operator for NPC (National Printing
Company) of Claysburg, PA
Q. Is this your first marriage?
Rick: We have both been married once before.
Both of our first marriages were done in the
Q. Do either of you have children?
Cindy: I have 2 children from a previous
marriage, Kathryn (23) and Eugene (19). I also
have a granddaughter, Deerin (6)
Rick: I have two daughters, Arizona (9) and
Q. Were your families involved in the wedding at
Cindy: Neither of our families was involved in
the wedding, because none of them knew about it.
Eugene did not even believe us when we told him
we had gotten married. He wanted to see the
Q. How supportive is your family of
Cindy: They are very supportive and happy. I
think they all wanted us to get married, but
none of them were holding their breath.
Monica (Rick’s sister): You’d think that after 9
years, if they were going to get married, they
would have done it by now. Rick’s girls were
happy to have a stepmom.
Q. Did you know of another couple who had a
wedding similar to this?
Neither of us knew of anyone who has ever had
this type of wedding before.
Q. Was the wedding all you expected it to be?
Rick: Yes, it
was all we expected and more.
Q. Were there any surprises during the wedding
or as a result of it?
Cindy: The biggest surprise was the wedding
itself. When Rick asked a friend of ours, Donna
McCauley, how to go about getting the marriage
license, I almost fell off of my 4-wheeler.
Q. Is there anything you would change about the
wedding if you had the opportunity?
Rick: I would
have thrown her in the mud pit after the
Q. Would you suggest this type of wedding to
Rick: Yes, we both recommend this kind of
wedding to anybody who wants their wedding to be
remembered by all.
Q. Where did you go on your honeymoon?
Rick: We went home for our honeymoon. We spent
our wedding night at Livingood Lodging in West
Virginia with a bottle of homemade wine given to
us by my best man, Jeff McCauley. We wanted
moonshine, but couldn’t find any.
Q. Have you received much publicity about your
Cindy: We haven’t really received much
publicity about the wedding. But by the next
morning, everybody knew who we were and what we
Q. Were you nervous about the ceremony?
wasn’t nervous at all.
Cindy: I kept getting my friend Donna to pinch
me to make sure I wasn’t dreaming. I was worried
that something would happen, and we wouldn’t be
able to do it.
Q. Were you worried about getting stuck in the
mud or falling?
Cindy: I wasn’t really worried about it, but
once it was all said and done, I nearly lost my
shoe in the mud.
Q. What was your favorite part about the
Rick: The best part for both of us were all the
great people that helped us pull the wedding off
and make it a memorable event for everyone.
Q. Was there a least favorite part and if so,
what was it?
Cindy: None of our family was there to be
with us. Rick’s sister, Monica Ott, is trying to
talk us into having our vows renewed in a couple
of years, just so she can be there.
Q. Were there alternate wedding plans you were
Rick: We hadn’t really thought about getting
married until on the way there. I was trying to
come up with a way to pull it off. I didn’t
think about the mud pit until we arrived at the
Q. Is there anything else you would like people
to know about your wedding?
Cindy: We both want the world to know, if you
are single or divorced, don’t give up on love.
There is always someone out there for everybody,
even if you have to kiss a lot of frogs to get
to your prince.
Q. Were you able to accomplish everything on
such a short notice to make it a legal ceremony
or did you have to re-perform the ceremony
Rick: A lot
of people ask us this. Yes, we were legally
married in the mud pit, and we have the license
to prove it.
Q. Is there anything you would like to add?
Rick: We are planning a wedding reception to be
done in the colors of camouflage. We would like
to give thanks to all the people who helped to
pull this wedding together on such a short
notice and a special thanks to Carl, Bonnie,
Matt and family, Rob, Glen and his son, Jack,
Rich, and Ann.
So there you have it. The wedding in the mud!
Who knew that the decision for the Hatfields and
McCoys to bury their hatchet and build an ATV
trail system would open up a way for others to
work together and begin their lives together?
Will there be another wedding next year at the
TrailFest? I guess we will all have to wait and
see. With or without a wedding, it promises to
be a very exciting event.
Make your plans now to attend the 10th Annual
Hatfield-McCoy TrailFest on October 7-11, 2010.
To find out more about the 2009 and 2010
TrailFests, please visit the official Web site