Government Shutdown Nightmares

bride-upset-at-weddingMike Cassesso and MaiLien Le had the fortunate opportunity to get rescued by Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert.  Unfortunately for most couples who planned to get married at government venues they have not been so lucky.

Mike and  Mailen had originally planned to get married at the scene of their first date which was the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, D.C.  Due to the recent shutdown that Memorial along with over 400 federal funded locations have been closed.  After hearing the news, Colbert saved the day and officiated an on air wedding for the couple.  They were part of the very few fortunate.

This shutdown has sent most couples scrambling to find back up plans as venues such as Joshua Tree and the Grand Canyon have long been favorite places to wed and are not sealed off, blocked off with cones are have been closed off with chains.  All of which would send any bride into panic.

Anja Winikka of says not to panic.  She says to keep in mind that all the vendors are still paid for and ready to go, you really have to just scramble and find either another park or local restaurant as an alternative locations.   Due to the situation, everyone is extremely accommodating.  You may not have exactly what you set out for but all won’t be lost.  Winikka told ABC News,

“If you were planning to get married in a national park, chances are most of your other vendors are intact and you just need a new venue.  We recommend trying to get a permit for an alternate city or state park. You can get a similar look and feel, and city and state parks are open.”

Great Smoky Mountains National park is another classic October wedding destination.  Park rangers say that there are more than 30 weddings scheduled to take place through next weekend.  Jerry McCarter’s daughter planned to have her wedding there, in Spence Cabin, a place that is deep in tradition to the McCarter family.   The rustic cabin in which they planned to hold the wedding did not have the right accommodations so they had to supply everything including lights and chandeliers.

With that being said, Jerry has been able to keep things into perspective. He reminds us,

“The shutdown makes no sense and the members of the House are still getting their paychecks. They don’t care if those plane tickets are bought and paid for by my future son-in-law’s family. They don’t care that there are park rangers out of work. They don’t care that this is impacting people from all over the country who come to Gatlinburg to visit the park for the fall colors and hurting tourism here. All they care about is what they are fixated and focused on.

I am lucky. In a nutshell, it is just a wedding for me. I still have a job. I’m thinking about the people who work in the park who depend on their weekly pay to live and scrape by.”

Hopefully the bride is as calm as her father.  Somehow I doubt it.

source: ABC News

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