Celebrating a Gold Milestone
A marriage lasting 50 years is not that common, and it’s a milestone worth celebrating in a big way. There are many reasons why couples don’t make it to that half-century mark. One is that many couples are getting married later than they did in previous generations, sometimes not getting married until their late 20s or 30s. Another is that one spouse may outlive the other. And, of course, some marriages do not last and end in divorce.
According to the August 5, 2021 report by the U.S. Census Bureau, “Fewer than 5% of all marriages last 50 years. A much smaller number survive 60 years.”
The symbol of 50 years of marriage is gold. Like the precious metal which represents it, “mining and refining” a marriage takes a long time and leads to a wealth of experience. It
is also sometimes used to refer to a period in time, such as “golden oldies,” which represents an old song or movie that is still well known and popular frequently from the 1950s.
Golden wedding anniversary celebrations have been around since ancient times. Historians believe it to be tradition that a husband gave his beloved a golden necklace, wreath or garland. In Germany and England this tradition seemed to catch on as well in the mid-1800s.
Castle Pines residents Rick and Karen Palm recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary by hosting a party at their home in The Retreat neighborhood. The weather cooperated and they were surrounded by loving family and friends. The couple has been asked many times what their secret to a lasting marriage is. They reply, “Love, respect, compromise and laughter.” When asked how it feels to be married 50+ years, they say that they feel fortunate to have great health and to have been able “grow up” together; they feel blessed. Among the blessings they count are the longtime friends who, too, have reached the 50-year marriage milestone. “We have surrounded ourselves with great people who share the same values we do and place the same importance on marriage and commitment,” said Karen. Rick added, “We look forward to where life takes us in the future.”
By Hollen Wheeler; photos courtesy of Karen Palm