LI couples say ‘yes’ to additional wedding fees



According to studies, dropping tens of thousands of dollars on a wedding has become the average for couples on Long Island.

But in the era of COVID-19, many newlyweds are grappling with an unexpected cost: the minimoine.

For Michelle Rock, 30, and Jonathan Pavlica, 30, of Bellerose, that meant spending an additional $ 5,000 on a 3-hour wedding at Westbury Manor with just eight guests…

… In addition to their budget of $ 35,000 for a 90-person event at Château Briand, scheduled for later this year.


A small social distance wedding usually held in the months leading up to large bridal events in homes or dining halls. It often includes a ceremony and a reception dinner.

TOTAL TOTAL: $ 2,000 to $ 10,000 +

According to a national survey by The Knot, most of last year’s weddings, organized as minimons, cost around $ 19,000, including venue, dress, and other extras. It might seem like an affordable drop in price, but for many local couples, it’s a precursor to the traditionally expensive celebration of 150+ guests that their wallets are still hanging around for.

Think of the minimony as another event the couple are hosting now. This is a scaled-down version of a larger event that often features many of the same elements, including notable moments like the cake cutting and the couple’s first dance.

Among the couples who brought their wedding ceremony forward to 2020, 42% have hosted a minimony and are still planning to host a larger reception, according to the survey which interviewed more than 7,600 couples.

Couples dreaming about their nuptials now seek estimates from vendors who are typically not part of the pre-COVID planning process: tent rentals, backyard caterers, portable dance floors, alcohol, heaters and more. . The exact cost of a minimony will vary depending on the number of guests in attendance and the amount of DIY the couple undertake.

And while big weddings start their slow comeback, the trend for intimate minimonia may be here to stay.

“I don’t think it’s going anywhere anytime soon,” says Michael Russo, the Cold Spring Harbor wedding planner. “I could predict that it would still exist in 2022. People are going to get a bit used to this type of celebration which is more intimate, smaller and more enjoyable.”

Russo says a minimum can be accomplished for around $ 5,000, depending on how lavish the couple desires and the number of guests.

“Micro” wedding packages at Lessing’s Group sites range, for example, from $ 2,500 for a simple ceremony at Bourne Mansion in Oakdale to $ 8,500 for a four-hour reception for 50 guests at the Heritage Club in Bethpage.

Katerina, 25, and Jack Graham, 28, of Merrick, spent $ 2,000 on a backyard wedding for 30 guests between the tent ($ 1,200), alcohol ($ 300) and food (350 $)… And it was eventually canceled and moved to a restaurant where the bill was an additional $ 3,000. They are still planning a wedding next year.

Kat Yetter, 25, and her husband Ryan, 25, hosted what they call their “bonus wedding” on July 24 and only managed to spend $ 1,500 more. She bought a second wedding dress online for $ 100, narrowed the guest list to 10, and celebrated in her grandparents’ garden in Massapequa, no tent rental required.

“It was super simple,” Kat says. “I really tried to cut costs as much as possible knowing we would have a bigger celebration this year.”

For other couples, the minimony is a welcome alternative to a big wedding.

Melissa Butler, 32, and her fiancé Richard Cumberland, 48, of Middle Island, hope to plan a minimony as their only ceremony for less than $ 5,000 in October.

“A wedding doesn’t have to have more than 100 guests,” she says. “A marriage is what you make of it.”

Source: The Knot 2019 and 2020 Wedding Studies

Writer and Producer: Meghan giannotta

Digital development: James Stewart, Matthew Cassella and Mark Levitas

Social media editor: Gabriella Vukelić


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