“Fantastic” is how one euphoric bride-to-be described this year’s Bride & Groom Expo; an annual exhibition organized by Vision Group that brings together a whole range of wedding service providers in a spot where they meet with the estimated 2% of the general population that needs the services every year.
This year’s exposition kicked off on Friday 3rd August and went through to Sunday 5th. Three days in which hoards of young women and a few men flocked to Lugogo exhibition hall where they met some of the best wedding service providers in the country. Those that bought a copy of Vision Group magazines on sale stood a chance to win air tickets to Dubai with Emirates, a sofa set from Inspiring Interiors and electronic goodies from Samsung.
In that hall, a girl could literally plan or fantasize about her dream wedding from the saloon, the fluffy bridal gowns, peer into a limousine, a tranquil reception venue, glean ideas for decoration, photo-video coverage, wedding cake, slobber at changing dresses, banquet facilities, right up to her ideal honeymoon bridal suit. Generally, for the soon-to-be-brides, the expo was a kid’s candy shop.
However, for the men who I presume were either hauled to scene by their spouses or innocently misled by the word “groom”; there wasn’t much to justify the 5000 entrance fee. Apart from Select Garments and The Royal Palms, I personally didn’t find many reasons for a man who is not there to cover the show or sell something to be in Lugogo Exhibition Hall last weekend.
Parallel sentiments were echoed by my companion who expressed little enthusiasm until she started drooling at chocolate fountains and taking notes under Maama Tendo’s tent. Her highlight for the day was a pearly thong in one of the lingerie boutiques which she felt would be like walking around with (pretty) stones inside your butt.
For service providers in the wedding industry, I could think of no better place to meet a higher number of customers in one weekend; or a better opportunity to network with other businesses in the industry as well as pick up new ideas. However, traffic on one’s stall depended on how appealing the commodities displayed were. Bakers displayed the best of their cakes, ranging from the revolving to castle sculpture cakes, as well as samples to the potential customers for the different flavors.
Photo and videographers paraded the finest of their photo albums below plasma screens showing clips from the most graceful functions they have covered, lingerie and Jewelry dealers flaunted the most elegant of their products, handing out fliers with touting inscriptions like “Marks & Spencer, Dorothy Perkins, fresh from the U.K”. There was also a booth trumpeting spa treatment services with tempting packages for couples that included services like steam baths, facials, body waxing, body wraps, exfoliating and detoxing treatment among others.
This cut throat competition favored the customers who had a wide range of dealers to compare with and pocket a business card from the optimum service provider.
Like the previous expositions, there were also sengas and marriage counselors. Some, like Catherine Rweza a.k.a Maama Tendo offered short seminars dealing with support, guidance and information to help couples create a healthy, loving, and lasting marriage and combat the alarming rate at which contemporary marriages are breaking apart. Others simply handed out brochures detailing the services they offer but also gave some advice when asked.
“’I do’ in a wedding ceremony doesn’t mean it’s done, couples have to work on their marriage to experience a loving and fulfilling relationship.” Stressed Mrs. Faridah Kasozi of Catch Him and Keep Him; a catchy as well as patronizing trade name for a marriage counseling service provider
Published by proggie