Parkersburg Art Center to host free wedding for contest winner

Love is Viral image
Love is Viral image(Parkersburg Art Center)
Published: Jul. 29, 2020 at 2:20 PM EDT
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va (WTAP) - The continuing COVID-19 pandemic has had wide-ranging effects for many. One consequence that some have felt is the necessity of cancelling or altering wedding plans due to safety concerns, and the Parkersburg Art Center wants to help one area couple experiencing just that. 

The center announced Tuesday that it is accepting submissions for its Love is Viral contest, the winners of which will be given the opportunity to hold their wedding at the center on Saturday, November 21 free of charge. While the couple will need to cover costs like catering and music, the center will rent out the venue to the couple at no cost.

“With everything going on, I wanted to put a positive light out there and give back to the community that supports the Arts Center,” said Lyndsay Dennis, events and membership manager.

Couples who would like to enter are asked to submit an essay of up to 250 words that gives background on their relationship and explains how the pandemic has interfered with their wedding plans. Essays should be submitted to Dennis at by August 22 and the winning couple will be chosen on August 31.

“I really want to hear about how the pandemic changed their plans, how it affected them, and what it would mean to them to get married this year, even with everything going on, especially rent-free at the Art Center. And I want to hear about their love story. We love love,” Dennis said.

Dennis requested that applicants include photos, as she will be posting short descriptions of the couples and their stories in an album on Facebook. Community members will then be asked to share their thoughts on Facebook and Dennis will take their feedback, as well as the number of likes and shares each photo receives, into account when selecting a winner.

The number of people allowed at the wedding will be determined by Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines at the time of the event in order to allow for social distancing. Tables will be set up six feet apart, and the center will encourage the couple to seat guests with their families so that those who are quarantining together will limit their exposure to others. Though masks won’t need to be worn while guests are eating at tables, the center will encourage guests to wear masks at other times. And the center is taking a number of precautions to sanitize the space. 

To learn more about the contest, visit the center’s Facebook page.

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