Regina couple undeterred by COVID-19 restrictions — still going ahead with wedding

Kelly Weimer and Jeffrey Paidel got engaged six months ago, and then the COVID-19 pandemic hit Saskatchewan. They had a hard choice to make: postpone their entire wedding or find a creative way to celebrate their union. They chose the latter.

Couple says they found unique way to marry amid the COVID-19 pandemic chaos

Kelly Weimer and Jeffrey Paidel are planning to go ahead with their May wedding — with a few adjustments. (Submitted by Kelly Weimer)

Although there are strict COVID-19 restrictions in Saskatchewan, speaking to Regina's Kelly Weimer about her wedding is like speaking to any other soon-to-be-bride. She is ecstatic and overwhelmed with joy, despite gatherings of 10 or more people being banned in the province. 

"We're going to have just our witnesses there and our lovely friend that's going to marry us — and our parents," Weimer said.

She and her fiancé, Jeffrey Paidel, will still be married on their original wedding date, May 16, 2020 — just with fewer guests. 

Weimer describes her original plan — an outdoor wedding in the big backyard of her friend's Heritage neighbourhood property — as a dream. 

"We were going to tent the two backyards and have our amazingly talented DJ friend DJ for us throughout the night. It was going to be an evening ceremony," she said.

"It was just going to be a big celebration."

But after the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions went into effect, they sent a new note to their guests with details of a drive-by celebration. 

Kelly Weimer said she is happy she will get to wear this custom-made dress twice. The couple is planning to throw a bigger party once the pandemic restrictions allow it. (Submitted by Kelly Weimer)

"We're trying to make the best of it, and to add a little humour to how we can adapt to the situations that we're getting married with," Weimer told CBC. 

The couple will say their vows indoors, surrounded by close family and friends who will stay two metres apart and only attend if they are healthy. 

We completely respect the decision that you make no matter if it's yes or no. We understand your reasoning for whatever answer you give, and we don't love you any less because of it.- Kelly Weimer


They will then go outside alone as a married couple, and wait for a wedding procession to drive by. 

"After the ceremony is done, if they wanted to drive by to the location that we're getting married… then they can drive by at a safe distance, and wave, and honk, and give their well wishes that way," Weimer said. 

They had to drastically reduce the number of people at their wedding. More than 100 people were going to be at their original wedding ceremony.

"As far as the drive-by receiving line, it would just be Jeff and I, because we don't want to draw any possible negative attention about having a big group on the front lawn." 

She said they have thought out the details very carefully. 

"I'm always thinking you know about how my actions and everything are going to affect other people, and I didn't want people to think that you know they weren't important enough for us to come, under the circumstances, this is what we have to deal with." 

Kelly Weimer and Jeffrey Paidel have been engaged for six months. Despite COVID-19 restrictions, they are going ahead with their wedding. (Submitted by Kelly Weimer )

She said that they both want to follow the rules and do everything by the book. 

"Jeff and I will be on the front lawn and, you know, have a glass of wine or something," she said. 

"Then people can wave and cheer, and we were planning on recording the whole thing and then sending it out to everybody and posting it on some social platforms, just for friends and family they can be with us this time can share in the experience with us." 

"Once all of this calms down, we plan to throw the wedding of the century," she laughs. 

Wedding season cancelled for many 

Crystal MacLeod owns RSVP Designs. She said that she has had to have some difficult phone calls and email exchanges with many of her brides. 

"They're sharing with me how they're feeling and I certainly understand that it's tough. It's the not knowing, like if they just knew right now, then we would make the plan, and change it," said MacLeod. 

She said many couples postponed, but many are going ahead with their June weddings.

"I keep telling my my clients, and my brides especially, that, 'You may have to postpone, and if you do, that will be OK. You're still going to have a beautiful wedding. You're just going to have a beautiful wedding a little further into the future, or the year than you had anticipated.'"

MacLeod said she is telling her clients to stay calm and, more importantly, try to have fun. 

"Weddings are fun. Picking out flowers, and dresses, and menus, and things like that, that's all fun — and I want my brides to still experience that." 

Weimer agrees. 

"At the end of the day as long as you still get to marry the love of your life. I think it's a win."