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Couple Celebrates Wedding in the Dark After Venue Loses Power During Tornado: ‘We Just Rolled with It’ – PEOPLE

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One Nebraska couple didn’t let anything get in the way of their dream wedding — not even a tornado.

The day before Austin and Jessica Bracker were set to celebrate their nuptials at A View West Shores in Waterloo on April 27, a tornado swept through the village, which is located just west of Omaha, according to CNN. The severe weather event left the wedding venue without power, upending the Brackers’ plans.

However, the couple was determined to carry on. “The thought of calling off the reception never crossed our minds,” Jessica told CNN. “Austin and I are resilient through everything we do in life and this is just something we rolled with what we were dealt.”

They quickly pivoted, relocating their reception from inside to a covered walkway outside. Jessica and Austin’s families worked together to move the setup, and A View West Shores’ staff also sprung into action, procuring extra generators from other local vendors. They also used LED stick lights and freedom stick lights to help illuminate the darkened reception venue.

“We will do anything for our clients,” Brandi Goldapp, the venue’s owner, told CNN.

After a church ceremony, the Brackers and their 300 guests gathered at A View West Shores to celebrate — and while not every detail was perfect, everyone “rolled with the punches,” Jessica said.

“We just rolled with it,” Austin added. “We were happy to be with one another and just kind of took it as it is.”

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Jessica told CNN they feel “very fortunate” that they were able to go forward with their wedding celebration, surrounded by their loved ones.

“We put 10 months of planning and coordinating, happy tears and lots of stress tears for the wedding of our dreams and all that kinda got ripped from us,” the bride said. “We are so fortunate and blessed to have the family and friends that we do that made the day as amazing as it possibly could have given the situation.”

Their guests say it was a very special night all around. “[It was] a wedding like I’ve never seen before,” Jessica’s great-aunt, Janet Sueper, told CNN. “Everyone participated in chipping in and hustling to make it special and they pulled it together really quickly.”

Another guest, Nash Thompson, said of the occasion: “Despite everything that happened, everybody showed up, made it what it is. A lot of people love these guys. That’s what it’s all about.”

Taylor Jonas and Kyle O’Driscoll at their wedding.

CBS Chicago/YouTube


In a similar story earlier this month, a Missouri couple, Taylor Jonas and Kyle O’Driscoll, moved ahead with their wedding plans after an EF1 tornado tore through Eureka and ripped the roof off their venue as they were in the middle of holding their rehearsal on April 18.

“Next thing we knew, the roof was flying off,” O’Driscoll recalled to local news outlet KMOV. “We went kind of pure chaos.”

After the storm, structural engineers inspected the venue and determined that the building was sound and safe to be occupied, apart from the hole in the roof. A team of roofers later came to repair the roof damage, and venue staff worked overtime to clean up the storm debris from the grounds and set up tables and decorations in time for the couple’s wedding on April 20.

“Nothing was going to stop us,” O’Driscoll said of their determination to hold their event.

“We were always going to have a wedding, whether it was in a parking lot or a barn or a tent,” Jonas agreed.

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