— Marissa Tiel
The bagpipes start to hum and the room quiets. She enters the ceremony, following the piper into the centre of the space.
It’s been 26 years since Myrna and Tracy first recited their vows. Now, they are renewing them in front of friends, family and a crowd of onlookers. Their renewal sealed with a kiss, the couple exits the room.
It’s all part of the Okanagan Hitched Wedding and Events Affair. The event, which took place at Okanagan College Sunday afternoon, was a hotspot for couples looking to scout out options for their upcoming nuptials.
With more than two dozen vendors related to events and weddings, couples had many options.
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From venues and wine, to catering and gowns, every aspect of a ceremony was paid attention to.
Newly engaged couple Abigail Sturgeon and Rylan Skelton attended the event to get some ideas for their own upcoming wedding.
“I saw it in the newspaper and I thought it’d be fun because we’re getting married in June,” said Sturgeon.
The couple has most of the planning done for their June 22 wedding, but was looking for some ideas.
“Just kind of the little stuff to tie everything up I guess,” said Skelton.
They were also looking at entering some contests, which were nothing to sneeze at.
By the end of the afternoon, one lucky couple had walked away with a pre-honeymoon getaway valued at $4,000 from Prestige Hotels and Resorts and Pacific Coastal Airlines.
To enter, couples filled out a question passport by visiting every vendor in attendance.
From Tyson Felt, owner and winemaker at Heaven’s Gate Winery, they learned about the animal hidden in its logo.
When it comes to wine at a wedding, Felt said couples go with a wine they like “across the board.”
In addition to contests and vendors, there were more interactive elements at Hitched. A live cooking demonstration by chef Michael Buffett of Start Fresh Project showed how to make pasta. Appetizers and wine circulated. Live models wore wedding gowns and tuxedos.
The models had their hair and make-up done by Rosalind Satar of Gini’s Salon, who has decades of experience helping brides get ready for their big day.
“It is a very big event in their lives,” said Satar. “Probably one of the biggest, so we have to able to make it as happy an occasion as well.”
She likes to see brides at least six months before their date to meet them and try out different styles before the big day.
Hitched was styled to look like a wedding reception. From the vibrant trellis at the entrance, to live foliage around the space, no detail went unnoticed.
With free admission, Hitched was a one-stop-shop for couples to plan their 2019 Okanagan weddings in style.