LGBT Expo Shows Boom Coming To Minn. Wedding Business

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The first legalized marriages between people of the same sex in Minnesota are now less than two weeks away.

The big change happens on Aug. 1, and it means wedding vendors are now marketing to a whole new clientele.

That was apparent at an LGBT wedding expo at the Marriott in downtown Minneapolis Sunday.

Some might say such an expo was a long time coming, but few would have waited longer than LaVerle McAdams and Judy Winiecki.

“We’ve waited 43 years,” McAdams said.

The two met as teachers on the Iron Range, and they plan to get married on Sept. 22. They thought it was a day they’d never see.

“We’re making it in time for my mother to give me away,” McAdams said.

Her mother is 96, according to Winiecki.

As it turns out, they are the new brides…and an opportunity for new business.

Diana Ellingson, of The Bridal Store in Crystal, says the weddings on the way are something “totally different” from traditional ones.

“We have women wearing tuxedos,” she said, adding that man also have bridesmaids.

The ages of those getting married are also more varied than those in the traditional crowd.

But many venders at the expo seemed eager to accommodate belated betrothals.

Winiecki and McAdams plan on having an afternoon wedding with close friends and family.

“It’s been a long engagement,” Winiecki  said.

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