When Jordan and Tyler got engaged on January 13, 2019, they never expected to have to change their wedding plans so many times. Nobody could have predicted the effects of COVID-19 on gatherings, and Jordan and Tyler adapted quickly to make sure they could still get married. Here’s how this couple dealt with navigating COVID, showing they (and their amazing spirit!) are great examples of how love conquers all.
Navigating COVID: ADJUSTING THE CEREMONY
Jordan explains why she kept her original ceremony date, rather than moving the wedding in its entirety. “We felt strongly that we were still going to get married on March 21st, even if no one else aside from our pastor could be there. Although it was really hard to face that reality, we know that our marriage is not about the big celebration, it’s simply about us two coming together as one, even if I had planned for well over a year! We just went with the flow and let it happen as it could. We didn’t want to move the ceremony because we thought, what if this is still happening in a couple of months? We don’t want to keep postponing our marriage just because the celebration can’t happen the same day.”
As Jordan told us, her ceremony was something she and Tyler will never forget. “Because we couldn’t have more than 10 people in attendance (including us) due to the CDC regulations, we really had to make adjustments on who would be there with us. We asked a couple of close family members to be our witnesses and decided to have a private Facebook live for our friends and family. We got pictures and had the ceremony along the Mississippi river banks down by St. Anthony Main in Minneapolis. It was extremely cold out but we all had a blast! We had a wedding cake and had a toast with Corona beer. It was definitely a day to remember!”
Navigating COVID: ADJUSTING THE RECEPTION
With things changing so quickly they had to make adjustments and adapt many times over. “About 6 days before the wedding, we found out that the new guest count max went from 250 people to 50 people and that is when we decided that we were going to move the reception, as it just wasn’t going to be what we had planned. When we reached out to our venue, the 4th of July was actually one of 2 days available for the next two years. So with hopeful hearts, we moved it to July 4th. We are excited though because our wedding is a gorgeous indoor/outdoor space so getting to use the outdoor properties makes us really happy!” Talk about seeing the silver lining! And because the couple still wants everyone to see them get married, they will have another ceremony, and as Jordan said with optimism, “it’ll be more like a 3-month vow renewal.”
The couple acknowledges that things keep changing and planning the reception while navigating COVID, even for July 4th, means “holding off for a little while to see how things shake out. We are hoping that by June, we will be able to have groups of 150/200 again, but as we all know – that can change in a second! If we have to, we will cut the number of people we will invite but we are hoping we won’t have to do that!”
ADVICE FOR COUPLES
Because Jordan and Tyler had less than a week before their wedding when COVID began affecting Minnesota, they didn’t have much guidance on how to adjust their wedding plans. Not only did they make changes about 6 times, they also had to reschedule their honeymoon. “It was definitely a lot to stay on top of but we made a list of all the vendors that we either booked or were renting items from and touched base with them [after every new update on COVID-19]. Once we had more news and realized we could only have a max of 10 people, we knew we were going to have to move the reception. We touched base with all of our vendors (starting with the most expensive and most heavily booked) and worked our way out from there. The first and the most crucial one for us was the venue. Once we were able to find a new date with them, we reached out to our next biggest vendors, our caterer and our florist. From there we worked our way down the list until we were able to touch base with every person.” Many of their vendors were able to move their contracts to the new date, but some were not. For those, they found replacements.
“Thankfully, it all worked out but it’s no easy task! My biggest advice is to reach out to your current (and future vendors if you need to find replacements) and ask them what their contract looks like if you have to reschedule your wedding due to the crisis. It’s a tough situation for everyone and certainly uncharted territory, but make sure to talk to each person to see how they can work with you in case you have to reschedule.”
One thing that made navigating COVID easier for Jordan and Tyler was their very positive attitude.
“It’s super easy to go down a defeated path but that truly will lead you nowhere and will only give you anxiety. We were most definitely bummed about not having the celebration we worked so hard to plan and we were extra bummed that our parents and close friends and family weren’t able to be with us physically. However, in the end we are so happy that we stayed positive because when it came to our day, although it wasn’t exactly what we wanted, we had an absolute blast!”
Another piece of advice from Jordan and Tyler about planning a wedding while navigating COVID is to understand things won’t be perfect. “As hard as it is to do, allow yourself to go with the flow a little bit. The biggest thing to remember is that the wedding and the marriage are not the same thing and although ideal, they don’t need to happen at the same time. In my opinion, there is no need to postpone your marriage just because the celebration can’t take place when it was scheduled to.”
“If you’re able to, do a private Facebook live so everyone can still be a part of it and make it official! I would also say to hire a photographer and videographer (mine did both), because that has brought an incredible amount of joy to myself and my friends/family. You get to relive the day over and over and remember how special the moment was! Know that in the end, it will all work out as it was meant to be!”
Wedding Day Images Courtesy of Kaylee LaMoine Film Co.
Check out this blog to see how other couples navigated planning during a pandemic!