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This couple ditched their destination wedding for an igloo in downtown Omaha

This couple ditched their destination wedding for an igloo in downtown Omaha

Kyle and Jess McMindes experience a social distancing wedding on Saturday, April 25, 2020. About 75 cars full of family and friends surprised the couple on their wedding day with a parade since they couldn't all be in the church because of the the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Jennifer Creighton and Andy Walters had everything they wanted for their wedding celebration — family heirloom place settings, the perfect music and twinkle lights to add a festive touch.

His tie coordinated with her winter green suede shoes, and Andy’s ivory shirt matched Jennifer’s bridal jumper.

The only thing they didn’t plan on was getting married in an igloo.

“I thought it was just beautiful,’’ Walters said of their Dec. 16 nuptials in Omaha.

The coronavirus pandemic forced the change of plan.

Instead of the destination wedding they had discussed, the couple just traveled downtown to the Capitol District. The nearby Marriott provided a staging space for wedding preparations and for honeymoon night afterward.

The four children in their newly combined family watched on Zoom along with other family and friends. People dining at the other igloos enjoyed the show.

“When we came out for photos after the official service, they started clapping,’’ the bride said. “It was so cute.’’

The igloo had all the comforts: heat to combat the chilly outside air, a place to eat and room for a champagne cart. And, of course, a place for their officiant, attorney friend Jim Buchanan.

Although it was a bit of a squeeze, the only real challenge was finding enough space for Walters to stand comfortably. He’s 6-foot-4.

Walters is an assistant principal at North High School; Creighton is an occupational therapist. Walters was on winter break, so it seemed like the perfect time to get married.

And in the year of a pandemic, why not an igloo? When she read about them in The World-Herald, Creighton thought it could work.

“Just because it’s 2020 doesn’t mean we can’t make it special, right?’’ she said. “Much better than having it at the attorney’s office or our home secondary to COVID safety protocols and wanting to keep our family and friends safe.

“Given that it was COVID, it was perfect.’’

The bride’s daughter, Savanna Hobza, helped with the flowers and decorations and did her mom’s hair and makeup. Attitude on Food catered dinner for two.

Their wedding photographer, Mary Royers of Apricity Photography, and a member of the catering staff were their official witnesses.

Creighton said that although the ceremony was wonderful, it was bittersweet not having family there.

“That was kind of fun — to get the family all logged on to Zoom,’’ she said.

They plan to have that destination party when it’s safe.

“When we can,’’ Creighton said, “we plan to take the whole family on a wonderful all-inclusive trip and celebrate the wedding that was.’’

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Marjie is a writer for The World-Herald’s special sections and specialty publications, including Inspired Living Omaha, Wedding Essentials and Momaha Magazine. Follow her on Twitter @mduceyOWH. Phone: 402-444-1034.

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