Real Bride’s Reaction to Wedding Postponed by the Coronavirus Outbreak
Anna Elkins and Jakob Kaltoft Nielson were all set to get married this spring at Governors Club in Chapel Hill, NC. As the COVID-19 outbreak intensified internationally, the couple decided that postponing their wedding was the best decision. Shortly after, President Trump announced all gatherings with more than 10 people should be cancelled through May 12 (an eight week duration). So, here’s the good news. If Anna and Jakob can reschedule their entire NC wedding all the way from Denmark, you can too! Find out how this bride-to-be found several unexpected silver linings while rescheduling her wedding postponed by the Coronavirus outbreak.
Q: What was your initial reaction to having your wedding postponed by the Coronavirus outbreak?
A: At first I was a bit overwhelmed. My fiancé and I took a week or so to consider postponing the wedding, because we didn’t want to make any rash decisions. On the groom’s side, the majority of the guests had already booked their travel plans and accommodations. However, since the groom’s family and friends are from out of town (Denmark) and there are a lot of restrictions on traveling, it made most sense to eliminate the uncertainty and the stress by postponing the wedding. We also didn’t want people who felt they should be there to feel unsafe while traveling.
Q: What was the first step you took to postpone and reschedule your wedding?
A: First, we reached out to our venue, Governors Club in Chapel Hill, to see what days they had availability from August through November. We were trying to pick a weekend that overlapped with a Danish holiday for our international guests, but soon realized we can’t be too picky, so we also considered getting married on a Friday. Luckily, our venue had the last Saturday available in October, which is a great month to get married in NC. Now we’re in the process of working with our other vendors, who are more than understanding and we’ve experienced an outpour of support from them. We’re also personally reaching out to our guests who are traveling across the pond to ensure they have enough time to change their travel and accommodations, and to help them in any way that we can.
Q: What advice would you give other couples who have to reschedule their wedding this year due to COVID-19?
A: Allow yourself a week to figure out what you want to do before making any quick decisions. What is best for you as a couple? This doesn’t have to be the thrown together back up plan. You now have more time to create something just as beautiful as your plan A (and it doesn’t have to mean more money). I first wanted to put my head down and start planning as soon as possible, but soon realized that taking the time to think about whether we wanted to wait until late summer, fall or another year for spring 2021 would make most sense for us. Then, my fiancé and I became excited thinking about how wonderful a fall wedding would be, and instead of lemonade and flower petals at the ceremony, we were thinking how amazing apple cider and light blankets could be. And it’s as simple as changing a few small details (that don’t have to break the bank) to make your wedding appropriate for a new season.
Q: How have your NC wedding vendors been flexible or helpful throughout the rescheduling process?
A: Our vendors have been extremely supportive and sympathetic, because this is such an unforeseen situation. They’ve all offered to move the date for free, and if they’re not available on that specific date then they would refund our deposit for free. So far, we’ve heard back from our ceremony and rehearsal venue (they provide the food as well), cake vendor, florist, photographer and pianist who are all available on Saturday, October 31. Our photographer is even moving some plans she had around to ensure she can make it that day! If a vendor is booked, we’re asking them (or our other vendors) for recommendations. It’s a little bit of extra work, but it feels a lot lighter when people are rallying around you as we’ve experienced these past couple of days.
Q: What silver lining(s) have you found by having a wedding postponed by the Coronavirus?
A: My sister (my MOH) gave me some great advice that I think helped change my mindset. She said, lets name five positives in postponing your wedding, and it helped change my perspective so much. I was overwhelmed at first, but I soon came to realize the great opportunities that come with postponing. For one, I get to enjoy being engaged longer, because the minute I got engaged, I started planning the wedding together with my fiancé. Two, both Jakob and I talked with a couple friends who weren’t able to travel from Denmark to the US in May, and now there’s an opportunity for them to come. Three, we have more time to prepare so we don’t sweat the small things (get creative with welcome bags, signs, etc.).
One of our vendors sent us a Starbucks gift card with the sweetest message and I thought I must share – it’s so sweet!
“Hey Anna! Crazy times we’re living in – at the end of it, you’ll have beautiful photos and a hell of a story to tell, just hang in there!” – Kelley Deal Photography