Pasadena will rein in unlicensed wedding photo shoots at city hall

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Pasadena’s beautiful Beaux Arts city hall is a popular backdrop for photo shoots for everything from weddings to quinceañeras, but the venue’s versatility and popularity, “is becoming an annoyance to the people who actually work at city hall,” says the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.

City spokesman William Boyer tells the newspaper that wardrobe changes have taken place “pretty much out in the open.” Other city staffers recounted stories of drones flying around, limos blocking the street, and subjects and photographers preventing the public from entering or moving across the premises. (Can’t have some stranger in the back of your photos, right?)

It has also become clear to city staffers that many photo shoots are taking place without a required $75-an-hour permit. So Pasadena is taking a kind-of firmer stance, reports the Tribune.

They aren’t trying to blow anyone’s big day—”We just want people to follow the rules and be respectful,” Boyer says—so the plan is just to have staffers on hand during working hours to check licenses and permits, if a particular shoot seems especially disruptive.

Boyer says rule-breakers won’t be kicked out. Usually, the city will allow the photo session to finish, but then require the photographer to get a permit if she wants to come back. “We’re not going to disrupt someone’s special moment and their special day,” he said.

Built in 1927, the city hall was designed by the same firm behind San Francisco’s city hall, Bakewell and Brown. The structure features intricate details and dome-topped central tower, plus a lovely water fountain. It’s a photo shoot gold mine. “If they want a castle, I bring them here,” one LA-based photographer told the Tribune.

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