There were plenty of cliches heard on the wharf before the ceremony got underway — a ferry tale wedding, Get Me to the Church On Time (II) and with this life ring, I thee wed.

Jeff LaMarche and Becca Hamilton, both captains of the Chappaquiddick ferry, were indeed married on the deck of the On Time II under a sky of pale blue at 1400 hours on Saturday afternoon. The ferry lay along the face of Memorial Wharf, signal flags crackling along the passenger rail. Witnessing the event from the wharf and the deck above was a crowd of invited guests — family members, friends and fellow skippers and deckhands — as well as spectators who happened to be strolling along the waterfront, reveling in the warmth of the day.

The Rev. Bob Edmunds performed the ceremony from the wheelhouse of the On Time II. — Tom Dunlop

It was an Edgartown and Chappaquiddick occasion in every imaginable way and repeatable nowhere else. Rick Hamilton, the father of the bride, and the groomsmen all wore kilts. So did Peter Wells, co-owner of the service with his wife Sally Snipes, as he stood, hands folded, at one end of the ferry watching his young skippers marry. The wedding party stood in a row along the wheelhouse side of the boat, and Tony Peak piped the march down the aisle, which in this case meant the father leading his daughter along the landward side of the old ferry, around one end, and back to the helm.

“This is pretty cool,” said the Rev. Bob Edmunds, who with his wife Deborah had retired from his mainland ministry and returned to his Edgartown home just three weeks before. The ceremony was short in the maritime tradition — a few readings, the vows, the rings, the kiss, the waves and done — but what lent it a sense of spontaneity were certain harbor touches: the bridesmaid who kept adjusting the hem of Ms. Hamilton’s dress every time a gust of wind blew it to leeward, the old ferry tickets torn up and thrown downwind as confetti, the newly married couple posing for pictures on either side of the helm with their hands clasped on the throttle.

In the 207 years the Chappy ferry is known to have been in service, married couples have run the boats together and married couples have owned the operation together. But this is the first time on record that the ferry has served as the site of an actual ceremony. With the marriage solemnized, the hawsers were lifted off the spiles of memorial wharf, Captain Wells fired up the engine and leaned on the whistle lanyard, and the On Time II pulled away from the pier and turned a wide arc around the harbor entrance.

But not for a celebratory cruise. The couple and their guests were due at a restaurant on upper Main street — they walked — and cars and trucks were lining up on the Chappy side, a fair number of them derby fishermen with a catch to weigh in before the competition ended Saturday night. Weddings are fun and different and in this case unprecedented, but the On Time II had to get back to work.