There are shows on TV, lots of them, actually, that showcase the splendor and pageantry that is a wedding. Some shows highlight the extreme lengths we go through to make that event one of the most memorable and special in our lives.
But, oh, at what a cost!
I ought to say at this point that I am cheap, very cheap, or using the more finessed word "frugal." It's probably because I've never really had a lot of disposable income in my life. And I'm okay with that. I know some people have more money and have worked very hard to give their children what they want. I'm not saying this is a bad thing. It's just what some do.
Of course, there's a lot of cheap/frugal people out there. I believe many in the area where I live consider themselves the same. I've noticed this when it comes to weddings.
I heard a news report this week that indicated Utah has the highest number per capita of church-goers in the nation, just above 50%, and if you've driven through the state, you'll notice in many areas there are churches everywhere! Almost all of them are the same denomination: LDS.
Like many religions, the churches are not only used on Sundays. Most LDS churches, at least in America, have kitchens, basketball gyms, as well as rooms for worship and instruction. It's also a wonderful place to hold a wedding reception. The gym and kitchen (and parking lot...) function well as a location for several hundred visitors to gather, congratulate the couples and their families, and even have a snack.
There is one HUGE advantage for a member of the congregation to have a wedding or wedding reception at a LDS church--it's free. My cheap side likes this. But there's another equally HUGE disadvantage of having a wedding or wedding reception in a LDS church.
It's in a gymnasium!
There are basketball standards at each end and three-point lines on the floor! I can overlook these things (cheap...), but I understand that others cannot. Tonight my wife, daughter and I attended a reception in a church gym, but when we walked in the space, we saw something different. The family hired a service that constructed an indoor tent of sorts with flowing white linens and lights that made you completely forget you were standing inside a church gym. Now, I know it probably wasn't cheap to decorate the space like that, but it made such a difference. It was so beautiful looking up, I didn't even notice the three-point lines on the floor.