Fighting wedding venues demand leadership from the governor

RALEIGH, NC (WTVD) – Wedding venue owners feel like they’re standing in the dark and shooting into the night without really knowing how to rebook events during the pandemic or what to tell brides about their big day.

The billion dollar industry has come to a standstill.

“These brides are now on their third wedding date and we’re just doing the best we can,” said Bradford owner Dana Kadwell, who is also president of the Triangle National Association of Catering Events.

Small business owners urge Governor Roy Cooper to offer guidance.

A letter has already been sent and another plea is being worked out.

Kadwell and other small business owners want to know what the next six months will be and hope this doesn’t compare to the Phase 2 rollout.

“If you want to ensure the safety of the people, you have to tell us how it works. Open again on Friday, not on a Wednesday,” she said.

There are an estimated 1,500 wedding venues in North Carolina, and for each event, 15 to 22 additional small businesses are hired to bring the big day to life. That could be the photographer or the cake and linen seller.

Kadwell has not held a soiree at their New Hill location since November. She did renovations over the winter off-season and planned to get brides out into the fresh room this spring.

She asks how much longer she can walk without guidance.

“I have to run my business now so that it will still be open in October,” said Kadwell.

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