STROUDSBURG, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — More than two and a half million weddings are expected to take place this year across the US, but are local venues able to keep up with the demand?
The wave of COVID lockdowns back in 2020 either canceled or postponed many couples’ plans to say ‘I do’. Two years later, an estimated 2.6 million weddings are anticipated to take place marking an increase from pre-pandemic numbers, according to a new report.
“We call Thursday the new Saturday,” said Linda Forte, director of event operations at Stroudsmoor Country Inn.
Forte says the venue has always done weddings on weekdays, but it’s become more common in the last couple of years. Stroudsmoor has been open for 38 years and COVID lockdowns led to the first wedding cancelation in its history.
“It was devastating to have to tell our brides and grooms that they could not celebrate because the government had closed us down,” said Forte.
Now as many couples plan the walk down the aisle, businesses like Stroudsmoor are pushing through obstacles like supply chain issues.
“We had huge problems getting beef for awhile. Seafood has been incredibly expensive, and not only that, but very difficult to obtain,” explains Forte.
In addition to shortages forte says they’ve worked with their couples on keeping prices reasonable as inflation rattles an already expensive event.
She says they’ve had to raise the rates for 2023 and ’24 to keep up with the costs.
“We’re now booking into 2025 without contracted rates because we can’t predict what’s going to happen. Hopefully it will go the other way and we’ll be looking at a much less expensive wedding, in 2025 who knows,” said Forte.
According to the report from wedding planning site ‘The Knot‘ couples spent an average of 28-thousand dollars on their wedding lining up with pre-pandemic costs.