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Wedding industry adjusting to cancellations and postponements, while trying to stay in business

Wedding industry adjusting to cancellations and postponements, while trying to stay in business

Professionals who depend on the local wedding industry include videographers, photographers and musicians as well wedding planners, caterers and florists. (Lonely Eskimo Productions, via EmilySullivanEvents.com) By Sue Strachan, Uptown Messenger Near the end of a meeting to discuss the future of the wedding industry in New Orleans, event planner Emily Sullivan took a phone call. “It’s a client,” she said. With restrictions getting tougher every day due to the spread of COVID-19, a phone call from a client is going to mean a cancellation or a postponement. Weddings are big business in New Orleans. And like many businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in the city, they are worried about their future. A group of wedding professionals met last week at Bittersweet Confections on Magazine Street to discuss what the future may hold, as well as offer tips to other wedding vendors. Among those attending were Bittersweet Confections owner Cheryl Scripter; Amanda Price, Amanda Price Events; Emily Sullivan, Emily Sullivan Events; Leah Bernahu, Pigeon Catering and Board of Trade; and Ashley Ashley Watkins-Bateman of NOLA Flora. More people FaceTimed or called into the meeting. “We are advocating for our employees,” said Sullivan, adding, “with the understanding there is a business standing at the end of this.” The COVID-19 pandemic in New Orleans has infiltrated its way into every business, with weddings among the hardest hit, due to how many people earn a living from them. According to the online site, The Wedding Report, there were 8,530 weddings in the New Orleans-Metairie area in 2019, with the average wedding costs $27,544. When a wedding – and the events surrounding it — are canceled or postponed it reverberates through throughout the city: wedding planners, florists, caterers, restaurants, venues, bakeries, musicians, stationers, dressmakers, bridal stores, hotels, jewelers, photographers and videographers are among […]

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