0920-atlanta-wedding-e1379700230238-624x413I always wondered what happened to expensive catering deposits when a wedding is called off, because as so many of us know some places either refuse to give refunds or only give a small percentage of refunds back so not only do you have to deal with a heartbroken bride or groom, you have a mess of chicken cordon bleu sitting around with no one to eat it. The Fowler family found themselves in this exact situation when their daughter’s wedding was unexpectedly called off, so they did something amazing with the situation. They had a big party to feed the homeless. From WBUR:

Hosts of a cancelled wedding donated an elaborate reception to Atlanta’s homeless last Sunday.

Carol and Willie Fowler teamed up with Hosea Feed the Hungry, a local organization serving families in need, to turn the wedding-that-wasn’t into the first annual Fowler Family Celebration of Love, feeding 200 unexpected guests.

“We’re very pleased that she’s handling it so well,” Carol Fowler told Here & Now about her daughter. “She was also very delighted to see and know that others had an opportunity to enjoy something, rather than just allow it to go to waste.”

The Fowler family plans on holding a similar event next year. I think this is such a cool idea because it’s so wasteful to think that no one would have enjoyed the reception if they hadn’t decided to share it with their community, and I’m sure their daughter’s heartbreak is being eased a bit knowing that even though her special day was pretty much ruined, she created a special day for so many others. I have never had anyone close to me have a wedding cancelled, but we all have seen so many stories about cancelled weddings becoming just this nightmare drama of legalities and gift returning and deposits lost and sad, sad people that this family turning it into a joyous occasion just warms my tiny little heart. What a bunch of gracious people. I don’t know what your weddings were like but when I look back on (BOTH!) of mine, they were lovely and fun but so expensive and so stressful. It sort of makes me wish I had just a cookout in a backyard and donated the rest of what everything else costs, flowers and cake and all that.

Plus, I hope the one-time groom is feeling a little sheepish that he is missing out on having these awesome people for his parents-in-law. It’s better that the wedding was called off sooner rather than later, and I guess it’s good the bride didn’t go through something only to have it end badly after second thoughts, but I can’t help thinking he probably feels pretty glum that instead of crying and wringing their hands over this, the family did something beautiful for others.

(Image: WNYC.Org/emin kuliyev/shutterstock)