Letter from the Columbus Weddings Editor

Overcoming the challenges of planning a wedding during the coronavirus pandemic

Emma Frankart Henterly
Columbus Monthly
Emma Frankart Henterly

This story first appeared in the spring/summer 2022 issue of Columbus Weddings, published in December 2021.  

There was a moment this summer when I, like many others, breathed a sigh of relief: COVID-19 vaccinations were on the rise and cases were on the decline. I looked forward to planning an issue of Columbus Weddings that was relatively free of words like pandemic and super-spreader; an issue without masked couples or guests; an issue that was free of the fear and uncertainty that had plagued the world for the prior 15 months. 

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Then the delta variant changed everything, again. Cases rose. Breakthrough infections sent many people—myself included—back into isolation and made large, indoor gatherings a concern once more. Mask mandates returned across the country, including in the city of Columbus. A September spike in daily Ohio cases was almost three-fourths the size of the state’s high point in November 2020. Even as I write this letter, the week after Thanksgiving, the new omicron variant has many wondering not when, but if, this pandemic will ever end. 

And yet, somehow, we carry on. We adjust our plans and processes, whether that’s by splitting up a small ceremony and large party across several months, as the couples profiled on Page 28 of the issue did, or adjusting existing plans to ensure continued safety, as many of our Real Weddings couples did. Find their stories beginning on Page 41. 

Speaking of our Real Weddings section, you may notice that it’s much longer than usual. The wave of postponed weddings in early 2020 resulted in a flood of rescheduled and reimagined events this year, and that’s evidenced in part by the record number of submissions for this issue. As a result, we’ve packed in more weddings than we typically have since before the pandemic started. 

This deluge is expected to continue into 2022 and beyond, according to a recent story from The Wall Street Journal. So if you’re planning a wedding and haven’t yet booked all of your vendors, you may want to start. Still deciding? Don’t miss the return of our annual Columbus Weddings Show, back at the Ohio Expo Center’s Kasich Hall Jan. 15–16 after a 2021 hiatus. There, you’ll find scores of wedding pros, daily fashion shows, free samples from caterers and bakers, show-exclusive deals and a daily appearance by celebrity wedding planner David Tutera. Find more information and buy tickets at cbusweddings.com

Also returning is our annual Best of Columbus Weddings reader poll, which asks you to vote for your favorite area vendors in dozens of categories. Select your top picks now through Feb. 4 at cbuswedmag.com/vote

Yes, the long slog back to normalcy drags on. But with vaccinations readily available for those age 5 and older, vaccine approval for kids ages 6 months to 5 years expected in 2022, and science-backed measures like masking and social distancing continuing to provide an added layer of protection, we can still find ways to celebrate. (Check out our story at cbuswedmag.com/safe for tips on safely hosting or attending an indoor wedding.) 

So, continue planning your wedding, in whatever form it may take. Incorporate the latest trends (like the one we highlight on Page 14) or wow-factor details (Page 24). Support local businesses through these difficult times, especially those tackling the challenge of launching amid the pandemic (Page 20). Get vaccinated, if you’re able, and encourage your loved ones to do the same. Columbus Weddings will be hhere to help you plan the safe, beautiful wedding of your dreams, every step of the way. 

Be well, and happy planning, 

Emma Frankart Henterly, Editor