Bridal ExCYtement 2011 comes to the Memorial Union on Sunday

Briana Haguewood

Though nearly a week after Valentine’s Day, love will be in the air Sunday as the third annual Bridal ExCYtement fair takes over the Memorial Union.

From 1 to 4 p.m., future brides and grooms will have the opportunity to browse among more than 35 vendors from the local wedding industry gathered in one place. Nearly every aspect needed for planning the perfect wedding will be present, including catering companies, cake bakeries, disc jockeys and photographers.

The event is free to attend and open to the public.

“There aren’t many bridal fairs around here,” said Kristel Kautzky, MU Event Services wedding coordinator. “You’d usually need to go to Des Moines to get this kind of atmosphere. But because fewer people attend this event, it’s much more personal and guests get more attention.”

Kautzky led the planning for Bridal ExCYtement 2011 with help from the Ames Tribune. Kautzky said she began planning the affair in November. Since fall 2010 she has been coordinating all of the weddings that take place on the ISU campus. 

Though she has been planning weddings for some time, Kautzky said her experience planning Bridal ExCYtement has felt very new because it involves focusing on more than just one bride at a time.

“This entire process has been so different from coordinating a wedding,” she said. “There’s a lot more detail involved. I need to cater to many more people, making sure that the vendors, guests, models and staff are all happy.”

Last year more than 150 guests attended Bridal ExCYtement. The coordinators expect to have at least that number this year..

The planned photo booth has been a favorite element of the event in past years, Kautzky said. There will be free food and cake samples provided by vendors, a drawing for door prizes and each guest will get a punch card. If participants visit every vendor, their name will be entered into a drawing to win a cruise.

There will be a fashion show exhibiting the latest styles of bridal gowns, bridesmaid dresses, tuxedos and flower girl dresses. Fashion from Bridal Connection, Milroy’s Tuxedo and Moorman Clothiers will be featured. The show’s models will primarily be ISU apparel merchandising students.

“This bridal fair is an opportunity for guests to get to see the fashion, listen to a live disc jockey, and taste the catering before committing to purchase,” Kautzky said. “Some vendors will also have special deals for guests that sign up at the event.”

“I think it’s awesome that something like this can happen on campus. It showcases what ISU has to offer as well as brings unique vendors to campus,” said MaryBeth Konkowski, junior in communication studies.

While planning Bridal ExCYtement 2011, MU Event Management decided it will hold an additional bridal fair in the fall for the first time.