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You can’t manufacture real wedding experiences

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I accidentally read this week that Kim Kardashian and Kanye West want a “royal wedding balcony” built onto the Chateau Louis XIV so that their wedding guests can experience and cheer their re-created “royal” balcony kiss.

My Letter to Kimmy:

I’m not one to shove unwanted advice toward eager brides-to-be — especially when they’ve already had practice promising “til death do I part” to two previous grooms. But Kimmy, Kimmy, Kimmy, let me just suggest ditching the balcony — don’t try to emulate the Prince William and Kate Middleton royal wedding — be yourself. If you invite the family and friends whom you love and who truly love you, your guests will not need an experience handed to them — they will make their own.

I recently had the blessing of attending my daughter’s wedding — of course there was a beautiful church wedding, with a roof-to-floor glass window reception at the elegant Dallara Indycar factory. I won’t bore you with all the details; and although Beyonce and Jay Z couldn’t make it, Johnson County royalty included renowned authors Joyce and Al Long, greenhouse business magnates Paul and Marsha Schlegel and an assembly of “the family.”

Kimmy, if you want to give your wedding guests an experience, just invite them like Michael Tillman and Chloe Mangas did and let the behind-the-scenes fun begin. Maybe just trade out the balcony for fire trucks, pie-swapping and photo-booths. Here’s a few experiences from their April 12 wedding:

As the bridal party and family members were taking photos a few hours before the wedding at Kingsway Christian Church on that beautiful blustery day, we noticed smoke barely visible nearly a mile south of the church being extinguished by local fire departments.

Taking photos outside the church, we suddenly noticed smoke rising from the mulch that surrounded a youth building about a football field’s length from the church. The next thing I know, the groom (and Eagle Scout) Michael Tillman and groomsman Sonny Delarosa grabbed a fire extinguisher and began smothering the mulch fire. The fire department was quickly called; and to the amazement and joy of the young children (and young at heart like me), two Brownsburg fire trucks, an emergency vehicle and an Avon fire truck came quickly to the rescue, which by the way made a great extra photo opportunity when the firefighters were done and posed with the bride and groom.

Another experience that the guests made for themselves was in the pie-stealing. Chloe and Michael had their guest tables set with elegant white flowers in vases and homemade pies on white stands intermingled. Chloe thought that, along with the wedding cake, her guests would interact even more by asking politely if they could have a piece of Lori Weller’s peanut butter pie or Amy Walker’s famous raspberry and sugar crème pie that were sitting at an adjoining table.

What actually happened was that as a table was released to get dinner, an adjoining table of guests slipped over and traded their vases of flowers for the pie they had been coveting. I have continued to hear stories of wedding “pie-stealing” from numerous sources.

So Kim and all of you fellow wedding and graduation party planners, it seems the winter thaw and spring rains are bringing showers of engagements and upcoming weddings. May the weddings and graduation parties you attend be filled with family, friends and pie-swapping. We need to give the firefighters a break.

Janet Hommel Mangas, the third of seven children, grew up on the east side of Greenwood. The Center Grove area resident and her husband are the parents of three daughters. Send comments to letters@dailyjournal.net.

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