Wedding bells will take the form of bagpipes at this weekend's Dublin Irish Festival.

Wedding bells will take the form of bagpipes at this weekend's Dublin Irish Festival.

The three-day celebration of all things Irish features more than dancing, music and games; three couples will exchange vows at this year's festival.

The festival hosted its first wedding last year.

"Last year was the first wedding in festival history and that's hard to believe because the festival has been around for so long," said Amanda Smigelsky, who works for the city's community relations department and helps arrange the weddings.

She said couples want to get married at the Irish festival because they associate it with good memories.

"They have shared memories at the festival and family memories there," she said.

Hilliard couple Jennifer Clark and Ryan Cork took their 1-week-old son to the festival last year and made lasting memories that prompted them to arrange their Sunday ceremony.

"We had our son in July of 2008 and so the Irish festival fell on his one-week birthday," Clark said. "Ryan walked around like the proudest papa ever."

Both Clark and Cork have attended the Irish festival for years and are adding a special Irish twist to their ceremony -- a traditional Celtic handfasting.

Historically, a couple who did the handfasting would be bound for a year and a day. If things worked out between the couple, it would "be a prolonged engagement and they would get married. If not they could go their separate ways," Clark said.

The couple opted out of an Alabama wedding when plans got too complicated and quickly arranged a festival wedding after finding information about the reunion tent.

Clark said she found information on the Irish festival Web site and even found their bagpiper, Jeff Linn, during the surfing session.

"I'm so excited. It was like pulling teeth planning a wedding in Alabama," she said. "This really fell together in the last week. Jeff (Linn) has been fabulous in planning the ceremony."

Reunion tents also have attracted large family gatherings.

Mary Jo DiSalvo, community relations specialist, said the city is booking reunions for the Irish festival through 2011. An Illinois man is planning a large O'Reilly family reunion for next year.

"They've already booked rooms for 2010," DiSalvo said. "They've never been here, but they like the location and what they've seen and heard about the festival."

Weddings are slated for each day of the festival this year, but other special moments have been known to pop up.

"We've had an engagement here before," DiSalvo said. "A guy came up to me at the Dublin stage in 2006 and said he wanted to propose on stage."

DiSalvo said along with a successful proposal, she knows of at least one couple who celebrate their anniversary at the festival. "It's nice because we're trying to make meaningful moments," she said.

Smigelsky said, "The festival is not only the best place for Irish music, food and entertainment, but also love."