Dec. 7th, 1981 UPI Article-“Magic Abounds at Doug Henning Wedding”

Today’s post is a quick article detailing the December 6th, 1981 wedding of Doug and Debby in Fairfield, Iowa. While, many of us have probably seen the handful of photos that exist out there of the event, the details of the actual day remain elusive at best. 

Finding this article from the news service UPI was a find, and gives us a glimpse of the order of things that  day. Especially, the illusions that Doug performed. Yes, it’s Doug Henning after all. Did you expect anything less?

“Magic Abounds at Doug Henning Wedding”


FAIRFIELD, Iowa — Magician Doug Henning and his bride were married amid applause and the jingling of hundreds of tiny, hand-held brass bells in a storybook ceremony featuring magic acts.

During the 75 minute ceremony Sunday, Henning performed two magical acts in the Ladies’ Golden Dome of True Knowledge at Maharishi International University — where the he and Debbie Douillard of New York City met less than one year ago.

The bride, dressed in a full-length gown of white satin with a fox fur trimmed jacket, arrived in an open carriage drawn by two small ponies.

Preceded by five attendants, she walked through an arch decorated with a variety of white flowers and baby’s breath before beginning the march down the aisle.

The couple read from an oversized book they had created, ‘The Miracle of Love and the Peace of God.’ It had Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s picture on the inside cover.

After the reading, Henning produced a snow white dove from the pages of the book.

‘May there be peace throughout the land,’ he said as the dove fluttered above the front rows of the congregation.

Attendants captured the bird and Henning placed it on his bride’s white-gloved finger. He transferred it to a wooden cage a few minutes later.

For his second illusion, Henning displayed a ‘golden magical box that contains only the unmanifest at this moment.’

But before Henning could close the doors of the box, a cascade of white carnation and red roses fell into view — a few seconds ahead of time. Henning asked the bridal attendants to distribute the flowers to everyone in the audience.

About 1,500 people jingled tiny brass bells to express their approval of the ceremony. The congregation later threw packets of green, white and red rice at the couple as they departed for their reception.

Two large television screens were mounted on the walls of the dome, carrying closed-circuit images captured by a crew on the floor of the dome.

With the angelic melodies of a harp in the background, the couple exchanged the wedding vows they wrote for the gathering. Henning, dressed in a white cutaway coat, carried cue cards in a pocket to keep track of the ceremony.

Henning and his bride met at MIU in January while taking a meditation course. Ms. Douillard, 26, will become Henning’s assistant.

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