Wedding rescue contest to save Alberta couple hit by economic, personal loss

WATCH: One Alberta photographer discovered the recent downturn in the economy was cancelling weddings for many couples, so she came up with a way to give that special day back. Stefan Keyes reports.

INNISFAIL, Alta. – One of three central Alberta couples who cancelled their weddings due to hard times will have a chance to tie the knot after all.

The nuptials were called off because one or both of the would-be marrieds weren’t working in a uncertain provincial economy or had experienced personal loss.

But a wedding rescue contest organized by a professional photographer will cover much of the cost of a 120-guest event.

Fawna Sidoryk of Innisfail and other businesses will provide the photography, venue, planning, hair and makeup for the bride and two attendants, a marriage commissioner and DJ.

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Contestants had to send a photo and writeup about why they deserved to win and three finalists were chosen.

Online voting began Monday on the Photos by Fawna Facebook page and continues to June 29.

The two couples who receive the most votes will be interviewed by the sponsors, who will decide on a winner.

Sidoryk said she got the idea for the contest after three of her wedding shoots were cancelled this summer.

She said she usually has one couple pull out a season – often because the two have decided to split – but this year’s cancellations have been related to the economic slowdown blamed on low oil prices.

It’s the first time in her seven years in business that engaged couples have suddenly decided they couldn’t afford their wedding, she added.

The contest idea snowballed as more and more services got involved.

“We genuinely want these people to go ahead with their wedding … we want to be able to help.”

Some things are not covered by the contest: alcohol, food and the groom’s clothing. The wedding has to take place Aug. 29 and the venue has been set.

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One of the couples in the running had planned to get married three years ago, but that changed when their youngest son died that year.

Another couple cancelled after the groom’s job became less secure and the third pair decided to wait when the groom was laid off.

(Red Deer Advocate)

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