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Seeking Inspiration in the Time of COVID-19

In this time of crisis, we find ourselves consuming as much information as we can find online- from the latest in small business loans, to how to pivot your online content given the state of the industry.

I recently had the privilege of interviewing Michelle Loretta of Sage Wedding Pros for The Wedding Academy’s online summit, and as I wrapped things up, I asked one last question- can you share something hopeful with us?

And she said, far more eloquently than I’m about to, that now is the time that we’ll see the quiet superstars of the industry really rise to the occasion.

It was then and there, that I experienced a shift in my thinking. Yes, I would still dedicate time to learning everything about the Paycheck Protection Program, and how to actually homeschool a first grader. But I’d also block off a few minutes to seek out members of our industry who are defying the odds with their ingenuity, determination and hospitality

So, who’s inspiring me right now?

A Lesson in Transparency: This Week in Wedding’s Episode with Lara Woolfson

When event photographer Lara Woolfson contracted the Coronavirus while shooting a conference, she could have easily made the decision to slip into anonymity after recovering. But now that she is on the other side of it, she is determined to share her story, in hopes that others can understand how serious this is. This Week in Weddings was keen to assist, and dedicated an entire episode to sharing her story.

A Lesson in Considering your Audience: Queen City Catering

Many caterers have shifted their model, heavily promoting takeout and delivery services. What stood out particularly about Charlotte-based Queen City Catering is that they’re thinking beyond the “dinner for two” model.

Have kids at home driving you crazy? Simply pick one of the QC Catering Kids Boxes with your order. Not keen on going to the grocery store right now? They have an option for that too.

A Lesson in Ingenuity: The Doorstep DJ

Typically, entertainers are focused on packing on a dance floor so what do you do in the time of social distancing? Utah-based DJ Rob Ferre has found a way to keep the party going with the Doorstep DJ.

Along with Melissa Robison, Ferre organized a social distancing party that utilized Ferre’s skillset while offering a safe way to have fun. In addition to bringing joy to the neighborhood, the Doorstep DJ has also attracted local media coverage.

A Lesson in Kindness: Flourishing Art Design Studio

Florists across the industry are finding themselves in a particularly difficult situation- that is, what can be done with all of the flowers ordered for canceled events?

Bakersfield-based Flourishing Art Design Studio decided to make the best of the situation and dedicated their efforts to creating, and delivering, 150+ arrangements to area hospitals, nursing homes, Alzheimer care centers and hospices. People were encouraged to contact the studio and make their requests, with design and floral fees waived.

The gesture made such a big impression on the community at large, that a local TV station followed them throughout their day of deliveries.

So this week, I would encourage you to pull yourselves away from all of the COVID-19 coverage for just a few minutes, and find the companies making a positive impact during these difficult times. 

Because ultimately, they will be the ones to lead us to the other side of this.

Meghan Ely

President, OFD Consulting, Richmond, VA

Meghan Ely is the owner of wedding PR and wedding marketing firm OFD Consulting. Ely is a sought-after speaker, adjunct professor in the field of public relations, and a self-professed royal wedding enthusiast. 

Photo: Melody Smith Portraits