Larry Downing/REUTERS/Landov

The town gears up for the first daughter's weekend nuptials with commemorative items

May 09, 2008 02:40 PM

For the small town of Crawford, Texas, the wedding of their favorite son George W. Bush’s daughter Jenna and her fiancé Henry Hager on Saturday is turning into a royal celebration.

“If you thought the excitement for Princess Diana and Charles’s wedding was big, you should visit Crawford!” says wedding and event planner Steve Kemble, who has worked with the Bush family. “The local residents are exuberant.”

The excitement for Saturday’s event is evident throughout the small town, located 90 miles north of Austin and with a population of about 800 people.

The Yellow Rose gift shop is selling ceramic mugs with a picture of Jenna and Henry. The Red Bull gift shop is giving away punch and wedding cake on Saturday. And an 18-foot angel statue that overlooks the main intersection in town will be wearing a veil and holding a bouquet the day of the wedding.

Visitors can also find magnets, mousepads and white teddy bears commemorating the happy event.

On Friday, Gordon Johndroe, the White House spokesman for the National Security Council, said that President Bush plans to “spend time with the friends and family that are converging on the area” for the nuptials. “This is a very private, exciting time for the family and their friends,” he added.

About 200 guests are invited to the Bush’s 1,600-acre Prairie Chapel Ranch on Saturday. The ceremony – to take place next to a private fishing lake – is set to begin at 7:30 pm.

“The people of Texas are thrilled Jenna chose Crawford over the White House,” says Kemble. “It’s that good ol’ Texas pride. And the excitement in Crawford is at a higher level than when a small Texas town has a team in the state football championships. As a Texas native, I can tell you there is nothing bigger in Texas than football, so you can imagine this wedding is huge!”

Gerald Herbert/AP

Reporting by ANNE LANG

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