Wedding dresses for forty dollars? It’s a reality, as one local wedding venue is looking to make dreams come true for first responders and their spouses to be.
Victoria Kania, owner of Merlot on the Water in Broad Brook, simply has an overstock of wedding dresses.
They retail in the hundreds, if not thousands, and she said she wanted to make them available to first responders and their fiancés in exchange for a small donation.
On Thursday, Casey Hill, an EMT, was all smiles as she sparkled in one of the many wedding dresses she tried on.
“This is my first time trying on dresses, I was very nervous,” Hill said.
She works in dispatch and on the road, and a normal shift for her is 16 hours.
Working between 60 and 80 hours a week, it doesn’t give her a lot of personal time.
“I see my fiancé one day a week,” Hill said.
Shannon Parisi of East Windsor said she knows the feeling. Her husband-to-be is a police officer.
“He works the evening shift and comes home at 1 in the morning. If he’s not home at that time, I automatically wake up in the middle of the night and feel his side of the bed until he’s home,” Parisi said.
Kania is trying to make wedding days easier by offering brides one of 100 dresses, ranging from size 2 to 24.
It’s part of an overstock problem she recently inherited.
“The first thing came to my mind was to do something for those who do so much for our community, that being our police, military, our first responders,” Kania said.
On Saturday, the wedding venue will be transformed into a wedding dress shopping party.
It’s open strictly to first responders and their fiancés. A ticket to get in is a $40 donation to the East Windsor Police Department.
“They are out here every single day, working for us, might as well give back and do something for them, especially spouses to be who are home waiting,” Kania said.
On Thursday, Hill and Parisi got a sneak preview of the many dresses available and even tried some on.
“It feels great, a big weight lifted off my shoulders to know that’s one less thing I have to worry about,” Parisi said.
“Just the time and the stress that’s off me and the financial burden is an amazing experience,” Hill said.
Organizers said they are hoping the event will sell out and you do need to register.
It’s $40 to get in the door and that money goes to the East Windsor Police Department.
Saturday is only for first responders, but whatever is not taken will be open to the public the very next day and you will need to register for that as well.
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