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Pandemic unleashes a tsunami of weddings

Jeff Strickler, Star Tribune on

Published in Fashion Daily News

MINNEAPOLIS — For the 16 years that she's owned Lasting Impressions Weddings, Sarah Trotter has counseled her clients to be flexible when picking a date for their nuptials. She's still offering that advice, although this year it has a taken on a whole new dimension.

Be flexible about the day of the week. Be flexible about the time of day. Be flexible about the date. Be flexible about the month. And if none of that works, be flexible about the year.

"Clients have to be much more open-minded," she said.

A tsunami of weddings — some pushed back by the pandemic and some previously planned for this year — has inundated the wedding industry. This year, it might be easier to find someone to marry than to find a time and place to hold the ceremony.

Some venues are booked solid for the rest of the wedding season, which typically is May through October. For the places that do have openings, the most popular times have long been snatched up. (How do you feel about a ceremony at 5:30 p.m. on a Monday?)

And wedding planners are running themselves ragged trying to make everything work out. After two years of very little business, some planners are so busy that they are having to turn down new clients.


There are expected to be between 2.5 million (the estimate from the Wedding Report, which tracks market data) and 2.6 million (from the Knot wedding website) couples exchanging vows nationwide this year. Whichever number you use, it will be the most weddings in nearly four decades.

And Minnesotans are doing their part to contribute to the tidal wave, with 35,000 weddings expected in the state — and another 35,000 in Wisconsin.

"It's a little crazy," said Jenna Culley of Minneapolis-based Jenna Culley Events. "I've never seen anything like it."

So, what happened? In this case, it's more a matter of what didn't happen — weddings, in particular.


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