See BUST’s Own Callie Watts’ Mermaid Witch Handfasting Photos

by Nick McManus

This past Sunday, BUST’s own Callie Watts and her husband Camilo Salas renewed their vows on Fort Tilden’s shores with a Wiccan handfasting ceremony. Callie, one of BUST’s longtime staff, and Camilo, a freelance writer for the Latin American press, brought their friends and family together to the Rockaways for a one-year anniversary with an eccentric flair that perked up the heads of their fellow sunbathers.

Handfasting is a neopagan ceremony celebrated by Wiccans that affirms a couple’s commitment to each. When all the guests arrived, the officiator and former BUST staffer Christian Detres gathered everyone with the help of a small amp and microphone. Callie walked down an aisle of sand in her wedding dress, while Camilo waited in a white tuxedo jacket, complemented by black swim trunks. Callie’s mother Kedren was there taking photos with her 35mm camera, and Camilo’s uncle stood in place of his father who could not make it. The children in attendance had a front row seat on the sand, and the adults behind them stood at attention whilst clad in their swimwear.

After the couples’ new vows were exchanged, their wrists were tied, and the two of them jumped over a broomstick to conclude the ceremony. Turning to their audience, Callie stripped off her dress to reveal a mermaid costume, and Camilo carried her down to the water. Their barefoot friends followed them and splashed in the surf with joy.

Upon guests returning to their blankets, corks flew off the rosé wine, while meats and cheeses were pulled from a cooler. Guests included BUST’s co-publisher Laurie Henzel, who shared a blanket with other BUST staff; Black Label Bicycle Club’s Stinky, who along with his wife cradled their newborn child; and some of Camilo’s friends and family from Chile. 

Rich in romance, tradition, and the company of loved ones, this handfasting ceremony led Camilo to tell Callie, “We need to do this every year,” to which she replied, “Oh yeah, we will!”

handfastingcrowdThe attendees for Callie and Camilo’s Handfasting wedding vow renewal at Ft. Tilden, 8/6/17 at 4pm.

calliecamiloCallie Watts and Camilo Salas before the ceremony, 8/6/17 at 3pm.

ceremonypicsCallie and Camilo’s Handfasting wedding vow renewal ceremony, 8/6/17 at 4pm.


mermaidCamilo carrying Callie in her mermaid costume towards the water, 8/6/17 at 4pm.

kidsCallie and Camilo with the children in attendance, 8/6/17 at 3pm.


momaCamilo with his uncle and stepfather-in-law (fourth, third and first from left) in front of Katharina Grosse’s MOMA installation, 8/6/17 at 2pm.

weddingroofCallie and Camilo after their wedding ceremony on the roof of their Bed-Stuy loft, 8/6/16 at 9pm.



Follow Nick McManus on and on Instagram @dudemanshouse.

More from BUST

I Tried Six “Women-Friendly” Dating Apps — And Swiped On Mr. Right

How I Went From Urban Hipster To Real-Deal Witch

How To Have A Feminist Wedding: The Complete Guide

You may also like

Get the print magazine.

The best of BUST in your inbox!

Subscribe to Our Weekly Newsletter

About Us

Founded in 1993, BUST is the inclusive feminist lifestyle trailblazer offering a unique mix of humor, female-focused entertainment, uncensored personal stories, and candid reporting that tells the truth about women’s lives.

©2023 Street Media LLC.  All Right Reserved.