Bindi Irwin has tied the knot in a ceremony at Australia Zoo on Wednesday afternoon, hours before the federal government’s deadline on the number of wedding guests became official.
The 21-year-old had announced her engagement to her long-time American boyfriend Chandler Powell on her birthday in July.
In an welcome distraction from the doom and gloom of the coronavirus epidemic, speculation went into overdrive in the Sunshine State when the Sunshine Coast zoo was turned into a wedding venue.
A white gown could be seen poking out underneath a crowd of people huddled under umbrellas next to a large white SUV at the venue.
She later tweeted that “Today I married my best friend” and that “We shared tears and smiles and love”.
March 25th 2020 ❤️
Today I married my best friend. pic.twitter.com/xoAxQrKRox
— Bindi Irwin (@BindiIrwin) March 25, 2020
“We’ve planned this day for nearly a year and had to change everything, as we didn’t have guests at our wedding,” Irwin wrote.
“Right now we’re encouraging the world to hold onto hope and love, which will carry us forward during this profound time in history.
“Mum helped me get ready, Robert walked me down the aisle, Chandler became my husband, and together we lit a candle in Dad’s memory.”
Powell, who was a wakeboarder from Seffner, Florida, works at the Australia Zoo.
He also shared his joy on Twitter: “March 25, 2020, marks the most amazing day of my life.”
“After almost a year of planning, we changed everything so we could have a safe & small private ceremony at our home, Australia Zoo,” Powell tweeted.
“I hope we can share some love in the world, especially during this challenging time.”
Powell has previously said proposing to Irwin “in her very favourite place in the zoo, surrounded by animals, seemed like the perfect way” to do it.
Thank you for being my guiding light. You’re always with me. pic.twitter.com/v5FaY6mBx7
— Bindi Irwin (@BindiIrwin) March 24, 2020
Overnight on Wednesday, Irwin had posted a childhood photo on Instagram in tribute to her father, late wildlife warrior Steve Irwin, who died in 2006 from a stingray barb wound.
“Thank you for being my guiding light. You’re always with me,” she wrote.