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Summer of Love: Post-pandemic wedding rush is on

Couples are competing for vendors and venues as they move forward with rescheduled nuptials

CLEVELAND — Love never took a break during the pandemic, but some nuptials did.

Engaged couples with postponed 2020 ceremonies in huge numbers are, in many cases, now saying "I do" in 2021! That has vendors celebrating, but also scrambling just to keep up with the demand in this post-pandemic wedding boom.

"Ninety-five weddings is 100% madness, I will tell you right now," Kattie Cool, owner of Ohio's first pop-up wedding company Haus of Cool, said.

"The whole concept around a pop-up wedding is where you get to have a have a beautiful, over-the-top wedding for a fraction of the cost," she explained. It's an all-inclusive package for everything, except the reception."

The way her business is designed, Cool can do seven weddings in one day, all using the same venue. It's a real plus at a time when popular spots are booked solid through 2022 and beyond, causing couples and planners are getting creative.

"I had a wedding yesterday on a Monday, and it was incredible," photographer Charla Storey told us, adding finds herself booked throughout the week now that open weekend dates are essentially non-existent. "It's almost like having 3 different brides. You've got your COVID rescheduled bride, your 2021 bride, and your 'Oh my gosh, we can get back to life. Let's do this and let's do this now' bride."

Engaged couples from 2019, 2020 and 2021 are competing for the same services, but with the rush come some relaxed expectations.

After 15 months of separation, the focus is not on tradition, but rather on being together. Post-pandemic, our priorities have changed.

"They just want to focus on what's important at that moment, because you never know what could be taken away from you," Cool said.

The pandemic has brought about many changes within the wedding industry, and it's not just that more couples are having weekday ceremonies. It has impacted just about every facet from the industry, from food, the cake, invitations, flowers. and where people are getting married.