“I found out from a bride:” Event centers plan for Mayor Winnecke’s executive order

Event centers plan for Mayor Winnecke’s executive order

EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - The city of Evansville is entering its first weekend of Mayor Lloyd Winnecke’s latest executive order. The order requires events with more than 125 people to have prior approval from the Health Department.

“I found out from a bride," says Kyle Lehmann, general manager at City View Event Center in Evansville. "We had a bride call us that morning. She was kind of freaking out and worried that her wedding wasn’t going to happen.”

Since the original wedding accounted for 260 people and was scheduled for Saturday, October 24, the event center had to submit a written plan to the Health Department.

“Originally," says Lehmann, "we had to send a layout or a diagram of the building, where we would have all the tables and chairs and everything placed, how many people, and then what steps we were going to take to deal with the coronavirus.”

Health officials, however, wanted a little more before the event was approved.

Staff had to add more signage warning of COVID-19 and create a guest sign-in sheet for contact tracing.

“And they wanted us to take a second look at all of our tables to make sure we had them spaced so we could get six feet apart," says Lehmann.

After about a week, the wedding was approved.

Saundra Hadley is the owner her own wedding planning business, called Planning Forever Events. She knows what it could mean to families who do not have their weddings approved.

“One wedding specifically had to actually make phone calls," says Hadley, "and then we sent out a little card, essentially disinviting people.”

Back at City View Event Center, 233 of the bride and groom’s family and friends will be in attendance on Saturday.

“When I finally told them that we were approved," says Lehmann, "I think the message that I got was something along the lines of, ‘OMG! I am so happy!’”

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