The threat of icy roads didn't stop hundreds of brides-to-be (and the occasional fiancé) from looking over all the possible options in planning their perfect wedding during Sunday's annual Bridal Spectacular.
The 31st annual event was at The LINC for the first time. The basketball courts were covered with 109 booths ranging from photography services to DJs to wedding cakes, caterers, live musicians and, of course, wedding attire.
"It's amazing," organizer Vicky Arcobasso said. "There's more people this year (than before). I think the economy is doing well."
New this year was a "red carpet" pre-event that treated those arriving early to live music, Canterbury Hill wine samples, red velvet cupcakes and Italian ice from RJ's Real Italian Ice. One corner featured ornate decorations and encouraged people to take photos and post them on social media.
Kim Buddemeyer is the maid of honor in the upcoming weddings of two of her friends, Caitlin Weber and Katie Mogensen. The trio — along with Buddenemeyer's 5-month-old daughter, Isabella — made the trip from their hometown of Owensville to see what they could find that would fit their respective weddings.
"We're getting ideas for decorations, and there are lots of pretty wedding gowns," Buddemeyer said.
Jordan Beach and Patric Hall, of Jefferson City, are planning to tie the knot in May. They brought Hall's 3-year-old son, Adrian, to the event.
"We're trying to get some ideas and sign up for the good (giveaways)," Beach said.
She said she liked looking at the booths offering honeymoon trips, and sampling the food, which included elegant meals, BBQ, and lots of cakes and other sweets.
Hall said the wedding planning was exciting and stressful, but they were just wrapping up the details.
"If something doesn't work out, you get bummed out. But it always works out in the end," he said.
By the time the fashion show started around 3:30 p.m., vendors were quietly packing up as all eyes were on the models and their attire at the other end of The LINC. Seats were packed for the show, which featured models walking the runway in wedding dresses from various bridal shops at the event.