Wedding Showcase, in Fourth Year, Promises Refined Approach, Top-Tier Vendors
From gowns and tuxedos to entertainment, menus and venues, the 2011 Wedding Showcase is poised to continue its colorful run this weekend as the area's preeminent wedding show.
The showcase, now in its fourth year at the Bryce Jordan Center, is the largest of its kind in central Pennsylvania. With more than 70 vendors who cover every conceivable element of wedding-event planning, it has become the go-to, one-stop destination for brides- and grooms-to-be.
"Not only is it a chance to get to meet vendors and discover some areas of expertise -- it's also a great chance to go and meet other brides," said event coordinator Alex Nepa.
He said the show has become more refined as it grows every year, putting a premium on drawing top-quality vendors and first-rate expertise.
"It's definitely a great place to learn, spend time with experts and soak up their knowledge," Nepa added.
This year's showcase, sponsored jointly by the Jordan Center, StateCollege.com and Altoona.com, is slated to begin at 11 a.m. Sunday. The $5-per-person admission fee will be waived for those couples who register in advance via the official event website. Hundreds are expected to attend.
Among the highlights of this year's show:
- Every vendor will give away at least one prize worth at least $50. Most of the prizes -- including a dream wedding gown of the winner's choice -- are listed via the official event website. The grand prize will be a $1,000 cash giveaway.
- A 30-minute wedding fashion show is scheduled for 2 p.m. during the showcase. A wide variety of the latest fashions from top designers will be spotlighted and profiled in detail.
- With the economy facing rocky conditions, the showcase will offer ways to keep wedding costs under control, too, Nepa said.
Geographically, he said, the show reaches an audience that spans central Pennsylvania from Harrisburg north to Williamsport and west to Clearfield County.
And the timing of the show -- on the same weekend Penn State will play Eastern Michigan at Beaver Stadium -- makes it easily accessible to interested alumni, Nepa said.
In fact, he estimated, about half the weddings in the State College area involve Penn State alumni who moved away but want to wed on or near the University Park campus.
"I don't see that trend slowing down at all," Nepa said.