Due to the pandemic, many couples have had to make the tough decision to cancel, postpone or completely reimagine their big day. As the Champagne of Beers, Miller High Life has long been associated with celebratory occasions and wants to help Canadian couples whose wedding plans have been impacted by COVID-19 raise a toast to their marriage with a ceremony they’ll never forget—even if it’s not quite what they imagined! Through the Miller High Life Backyard Wedding Contest, three lucky couples will have the chance to win up to $10,000 toward certain elements that will take their wedding from different to desirable, in addition to one-on-one consultations with professional event planner and personality, Rebecca Chan, whom we chatted with about the contest and about postponed and pivoting nuptials during pandemic times. —Vita Daily
Hi Rebecca! Please tell us a bit about yourself to start.
Hi! I’m the owner and founder of Rebecca Chan Weddings & Events, specializing in planning beautiful, luxury weddings and celebrations in Toronto and abroad for over 10 years. I’m also a judge for the BC Wedding Awards.
Have you personally had experience with couples who have had to postpone their weddings due to COVID-19? What has that been like?
We typically plan 30 to 50 weddings a year, and all of them have postponed until 2021. One client has made the heartbreaking decision to cancel altogether, because they wanted to focus on starting a family instead and didn’t want to wait until the pandemic settled down. Our clients have been devastated, to say the least, because most have been planning and imagining their special day for over a year and invested a lot of money into creating their dream wedding. Some couples have had to renegotiate terms with their venue and vendors for rescheduling the day, often with a lot of tension, and it’s just been rubbing salt in the wound. Altogether it’s been a very stressful time for our couples!
How about couples who have decided, rather than cancel, to “pivot” to a different kind of “COVID-19-compliant” wedding? What could or has that looked like?
A handful of our couples have decided to still celebrate this year with a more intimate wedding, while waiting to hold their larger party next year. We have started offering packages for celebrating at home and celebrating at a venue for micro weddings, because it has been so popular this summer. These reimagined weddings are in a backyard or a smaller venue. Often we still see some floral decoration, a wedding cake and some light catering. Some couples have gone all out with matching masks, limousines and elaborate plans. The only thing limiting you is your imagination. It’s been important for couples to still feel like a wedding, but just on a smaller scale.
Tell us about Miller High Life’s “Backyard Weddings” contest; how can it help couples who are in this predicament?
Due to the pandemic, many couples have had to make the tough decision to cancel, postpone or completely reimagine their big day. As the Champagne of Beers, Miller High Life has long been associated with weddings and other celebratory occasions and wants to help Canadian couples whose wedding plans have been impacted by COVID-19 raise a toast to their marriage with a champagne worthy ceremony they’ll never forget—even if it’s not quite what they imagined! Through the Miller High Life Backyard Wedding Contest, three lucky couples will have the chance to win up to $10,000 toward certain elements that will take their wedding from different to desirable, in addition to a one-on-one consultation with me. All Canadian couples have to do is email their story for the chance to win! They’ll get help with anything from floral arrangements and catering, to photography and decorations, and can toast to their newly minted marriage status with Miller High Life.
What practical advice do you have for couples who have had a wrench thrown in their wedding plans this year?
Regulations around COVID-19 change weekly, so we have been advising couples to plan within a month’s timeline, if possible, while you know what the current restrictions are. Things could very well change in a few months time. Most of these small weddings are coming together with quick turnarounds, so it is highly recommended to seek professional help from a planner to help pull together the details for you in a short amount of time. Micro weddings can still be a lot of work and it is already a stressful time for couples. Don’t try to do it all yourself. Also, make the most out of this situation! This pandemic has impacted everyone, but it does not mean it has to damper your fun. An intimate celebration that has been reimagined can still be really romantic and special. You will look back one day and remember how you were still able to celebrate, despite the crazy that was happening around the world. And that is the making of a great love story.