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How the Government Shutdown Is Impacting Couples’ Weddings

weddingA wedding altar on the bank of the Little River in Townsend, Tennessee, gateway to Smoky Mountains National Park. (Shutterstock)

The U.S. is now 21 days into a government shutdown with many families and federal employees impacted directly by the ongoing situation. One couple wanted to explain the far-reaching breadth of the shutdown—while emphasizing that the estimated 800,000 federal workers were of most concern—by sharing their own personal story of how their wedding has been touched by it all.

Maggie Chardell and Brad Krzyzanowski had set their wedding venue in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, one of the great jewels of the East Coast, and a sentimental location for the bride. “It has an extra meaning to us because it’s the last vacation we went on with my dad,” Chardell told CBS Chicago this week. “He passed away the October following that.”

The date of the wedding was saved for Father’s Day 2019 by Krzyzanowski, who had reserved a cabin in the national park ahead of his proposal. Unfortunately, with 22 weeks until their wedding date, the couple has now become just one of many voices to be directly impacted by the government shutdown that started three weeks ago.

smoky mountains

The Smoky Mountains National Park. (Shutterstock)

They shared that the government had issued an email that read, “Your reservation on Sunday, June 16, 2019 has been canceled due to administration.” The couple then attempted to reach out to numerous numbers only to be greeted by voicemails largely related to the shutdown.

“It’s frustrating,” the bride expressed.

However, the couple wanted to use their tiny struggle to highlight the plight of the workers directly impacted by the shutdown–especially those who anticipated paychecks on Friday, January 11. (As of Friday, the shutdown has now tied the record for the longest in U.S. history.)

In late December, another couple dealt with a different type of consequence the week of their wedding. The two-be-weds, Dan Pollock and Danielle Geanacopoulos, arrived to the marriage bureau in Washington, D.C. to receive their marriage license days before their wedding.

It was closed.

“We didn’t even consider that the DC court was federally funded, so we only learned about it when we showed up at the courthouse,” Pollock told CNN.

They weren’t the only ones impacted, prompting D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser to introduce the LOVE Act (Let Our Vows Endure), which the city’s council unanimously approved this past Tuesday, January 8.

“They can shut down the United States government, but they cannot shut down love in the District of Columbia,” council member Brandon T. Todd declared before voting.

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About the Author

Esther Lee
Esther Lee
Esther is the Senior News Editor at The Knot. A self-proclaimed pop culture enthusiast, she appreciates a good celebrity interview just as much as she adores Nancy Meyers movies. You can find her kicking off her mornings with barre and a green juice, traveling and exploring new cultures, and rapidly scrolling her feed for the latest and greatest news. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @theestherlee.