(Facebook/Emily McManus)

(Facebook/Emily McManus)

COVID-19 restart plan welcome but B.C. couple postpones wedding again

Bride Emily McManus is worried that restrictions, including those on international travel, may not be lifted by summer

British Columbia’s COVID-19 restart plan had Emily McManus scrambling to book a third wedding date, this time after more clarity about walking down the aisle without limiting the number of guests or worrying about who’s been vaccinated or is hugging and dancing too closely.

When the pandemic forced McManus to scrap her wedding last August, she decided to hold a small ceremony in Chilliwack with a total of 10 people but didn’t wear her wedding dress. She and her partner, Steven McManus, postponed their big day to this August and now to July 2022.

Provincial measures introduced Tuesday allow for up to 50 guests at outdoor events. McManus is worried those restrictions may not be lifted by summer, especially without enough people getting vaccinated, and that international travel may still not be permitted. That means her partner’s family from England couldn’t attend and relatives from Ontario would have to consider how travel could be affected for them.

McManus, 28, is also protective of her mother, who is immune-compromised after a liver transplant three years ago, and said she’d rather wait for a big wedding so she can experience the highlights of a day that would include lots of partying.

“Even if we were going to go through with it this year, it just seems stressful, so basically we now have nine weeks to invite everybody and get everything organized,” she said. “Hopefully, next year we can have a big party and hopefully COVID will be behind us, fingers crossed.”

McManus said there’s already been enough emotional angst attached to the wedding day so she’d rather look forward to seeing photos of that milestone day without people wearing masks.

Eron Jaskow, who owns an event planning company and was hired by McManus, said she got a flurry of calls and emails after Premier John Horgan and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced the four-stage plan to reopen B.C.’s economy that would start to see a return to near normal by Labour Day.

Jaskow said she has told future brides anxious about whether they should go ahead with a scaled-down summer wedding to focus on what’s most important for them, especially after some of them had already cancelled a couple of times.

“If you can live without the big party and socialization aspect, if it comes down to just who’s there to witness you getting married and perhaps enjoy a light reception afterwards, then go for it. But if you’re looking for that big ambience, the festivity of your wedding, it’s going to be very different right now.”

Those getting married may also have a tough time finding caterers, officiants, DJs and venues in 2022 because of a rush on bookings from delays over two seasons, she said.

Caroline Colijn, a COVID-19 modeller and mathematician at Simon Fraser University, said she would like to see more first doses of a vaccine administered, to a level of about 90 per cent of people who are eligible, in order to reduce transmission of the virus in B.C.

Nearly 60 per cent of eligible residents had received their first dose by Tuesday, but the number of second doses still stands at about three per cent for all eligible adults. The province is aiming to vaccinate at least 70 per cent of residents while focusing on second doses as it moves forward with reopening plans.

“We need those second doses out because they provide that extra level of protection and it will help with variants we have now,” Colijn said.

However, first doses should remain a priority to prevent more transmission of COVID-19 as the number of indoor gatherings increase and more people ride transit to events, she said.

Heidi Tworek, a University of British Columbia professor who specializes in health communications, said easing restrictions should also include a plan to provide mental health resources for people who may deal with phobias about interacting with others after more than a year of keeping their distance.

“It raises questions about how we help people get there, not assuming that that will be simple for people, like a light switch on Sept. 8 being back to where they were last March 1,” she said.

“The communication is going to be really crucial, not just releasing a plan to keep explaining and reassuring why this is the plan and updating people,” Tworek said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

CoronavirusWeddings

Just Posted

CVSE officer checking out all the trucks before the convoy, which started at Riverlodge Recreational Centre in Kitimat BC and finished at the George Little Park in Terrace BC. (Jacob Lubberts photo)
VIDEO: Kitimat truck drivers rally together in honour of 215 bodies discovered at Kamloops Residential School

The convoy started at Riverlodge Recreational Centre and finished at the George Little Park

Coast Mountains School District No. 82 acting superintendent of schools, Janet Meyer, talks about policies and procedures relating to the death of Diversity Morgan, a LGBTQ+ student. (Black Press file)
School District 82 to revisit policy after transgender student’s death

Diversity’ death has created a deeper resolve for CMSD 82 to continue doing the work they started

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

Outside the Kitimat RCMP police station, Diversity Morgan’s family and Kitimat RCMP come together for a pride flag-raising ceremony. (Jacob Lubberts photo)
With heavy hearts, the Kitimat RCMP hosted a pride flag ceremony to highlight the RCMP’s commitment to inclusion and diversification, as well as honouring the passing of 15-year-old transgender student, Diversity Morgan, from Kitimat.
Speeches were given by Staff Sergeant Graham Morgan, Mayor Phil Germuth, Haisla Nation Chief Councillor Crystal Smith, and Diversity’s father, Mike Wilson.
“We are gathered here for the pride flag ceremony, but in my mind, we’re gathered here in solidarity for anyone who’s ever experienced prejudice or discrimination. […] Today we celebrate what makes us all unique individuals,” Mayor Phil Germuth said in his speech at the pride flag ceremony.
Struggling to get the words out, Crystal Smith, Haisla Nation’s chief councillor, emphasized her condolences to Diversity’s family in her speech sharing her similar experiences as well as acknowledging the need for education around these subjects.
Diversity’s father, Mike Wilson, said he wished that everyone was there under different circumstances but was grateful to see the turnout and the support from the community.
In honour of Diversity, the Kitimat RCMP also lowered their Canadian flag to half-mast, to bring awareness for people who are experiencing discrimination and are in need of additional support.
The Kitimat RCMP also stated that they will be lowering their Canadian flag around this time every year as a visual representation of LGBTQ+.
Kitimat Save-On-Foods also donated water and snacks for the ceremony.
Kitimat RCMP host pride flag ceremony in memory of Diversity Morgan

“We’re gathered here in solidarity for anyone who’s ever experienced prejudice or discrimination”

(Haisla First Nation logo)
Haisla Nation host walk for strength and series of virtual sessions for Indigenous History Month

The purpose of the walk is to bring Haisla Nation members together and show their collective support

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

Bernadette Jordan addresses the media following a swearing in ceremony at Rideau Hall in Ottawa on January 14, 2019. Jordan says the government will provide $2 million to allow First Nations to continue to strengthen the marine safety system across Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
First Nations receive federal funds to purchase marine rescue boats

Quatsino, Heiltsuk, and Kitasoo First Nation’s among eight across Canada to receive funding

Most Read