MINNEAPOLIS -- Love, with the proper stranger, can work out.
Elizabeth and David Weinlick offer themselves up as proof.
Just like the couple on ''Who Wants to Marry a Multimillionaire?'' they met and married people they barely knew in elaborately planned media events.
But while the TV couple's marriage is headed for annulment, the Weinlicks have enjoyed wedded bliss since June 13, 1998 -- the day that Weinlick married Elizabeth Runze, a woman chosen for him by his friends and relatives from a crop of candidates.
They were married at the Mall of America in Bloomington, drawing a crowd of 2,000 people and worldwide media attention.
At the time, Weinlick said he had grown tired for several years of being asked when he was going to get married. So he came up with a stock answer: June 13, 1998.
The suggestion that Weinlick let his friends pick the bride came from one of his friends, Steven Fletcher. When Weinlick accepted the challenge, Fletcher became his wedding campaign manager.
On a smaller scale, the Weinlicks' nuptials were a lot like the attention given the Fox network's television special that aired Feb. 15 and drew more than 22 million viewers.
With all of the controversy arising from that show, the Weinlicks are again the subjects of media attention -- and they're quick to defend their own get-married-quick union.
Elizabeth Weinlick watched the show and taped it for her husband, who ''got his fill of it in a few minutes,'' fast-forwarding through most of the two-hour special.
The Weinlicks said the series of multiple-choice questions and beauty-pageant atmosphere weren't conducive to a good match, a sober commitment, or a lasting choice.
''There were probably lots of women there (who) weren't serious about it,'' David Weinlick said. ''That's what we were doing during the 5 1/2 hours of interviewing candidates -- finding out who was really ready to do this.''
They insist that it was their attitude coming in that has allowed them to succeed.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.