Imagine walking into a grand ballroom full of gay people, in both senses of the word. As you enter you are greeted by a well-dressed guide, looking snazzy in a wedding-ready tuxedo and wearing a most friendly smile.
Perhaps he tells a joke, probably something wedding related, before introducing you to the buffet of wedding expo options. Do you start at the luxurious chocolate fountain? Would you like to head to the photo booth before the lines start forming? Or do you head for the lavish delicacies provided by Sweet Lorraine’s?
There’s other food there too. Wedding cake from Zingerman’s Bakery and The Pastry Palace that just might be the most delicious you’ve had in your entire life. And caterers from Fishbones, Chef Ben and The Produce Station will each be offerings tastings of their finest fare.
All through the room, hand-selected LGBT-friendly vendors await. You can talk with a qualified, specialized lawyer or financial planner about making legally-sound decisions about your household set-up. You can meet photographers who specialize in same-sex wedding ceremonies, find a tuxedo shop that is happy to help any husbands-to-be or wives-to-be pick out the perfect tux. And of course there will be wedding dresses, bridesmaids dresses, beauty salons, wedding planners, jewelry stores, invitations, rental facilities and everything you need to plan the perfect ceremony.
But what if you’re not gay? Or what if you’re not getting married?
So what? The cool thing about the LGBT community is that they pretty much love and accept anybody that isn’t a jerk to them. A lot of straight people intentionally seek out businesses that are LGBT-welcoming because they see it as a good sign that the company has good business practices and knows how to respect a customer.
What if you don’t know a thing about same-sex marriage? Not a problem. ACLU staff attorney Jay Kaplan will present a half hour workshop highlighting all the salient facts about marriage laws here and across the country, and discuss the prospects and strategies to eventually legalize same-sex marriage.
And what about all those “grown-up” things you need to know about before establishing a dual household? No worries. Comerica’s Vice President Christopher Kelly will present a half hour workshop with valuable tools on asset protection, wealth management and transfer, insurance and risk management and financial planning for your future life together.
And if you’re not getting married, it doesn’t hurt to go and get familiar with the companies that are out there catering to the community.
While you’re at it with the questions, who’s the handsome guide that’s showing you around it? And why is he suddenly running off, saying that he’s late, he’s late, for a very important date?
So many questions and more will be answered at the Wedding Expo next weekend. The Same-Sex Wedding Expo: Celebrate the Power of Love will be April 29 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Detroit Marriott Livonia, on Six Mile Rd., just east of I-275. Tickets are $10 at the door, with discounted $5 tickets available at http://www.PrideSource.com and at http://www.DailyGaypon.com.