Fewer COVID Restrictions Help Wedding Industry Less COVID Restrictions Helping The Wedding Industry

Some Syracuse Venues Seeing An Increase In Bookings

ALEXA GONZALEZ: They expect at least another 20 wedding bookings this year. The Sky Armory’s Financial Officer Kevin Samolis says before covid about 15% of guests invited to weddings did not attend. That number increased to about 40% since the pandemic.

KEVIN SAMOLIS: Guest count has been decreasing because of travel restrictions and people are scared.

GONZALEZ: Samolis says guests are tested heavily prior to the weddings.

SAMOLIS: Start doing the math and the you know having an infected person be at the event the odds are very very small.

GONZALEZ: Samolis says couples are now willing to get married any time of the year. Thats because he says attitudes are changing after not having ceremonies for so long. Alexa Gonzalez NCC News.

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) –Wedding bookings have seen a recent rise after New York State has lifted some COVID-19 restrictions on social gatherings beginning Monday.

Non-residential social gatherings can now have up to 100 people indoors or 200 outdoors. Restrictions on gatherings have been lifted in stages since March 15. Beginning April 2 capacity could go up to 500 people with testing.

One downtown Syracuse events venue called the Sky Armory went from doing 200 events to eight once the pandemic hit, said Financial Officer Kevin Samolis.

“We floated a whole bunch of money from the U.S. government, which got us to this point,” said Samolis. “So now, we are in a position to rehire staff.”

The Sky Armory now has about 45 weddings booked for just this year and they are expecting another 20 to be booked in the upcoming months, said Samolis.

About five to 10 couples a day come into the venue with inquiries for tours, tastings etc. People have raised concerns over the 2020 couples taking all the dates for 2021 and 2022.

“Everybody wants to get married, there’s only so many Saturdays,” Samolis said. “So there is a lot of interest out their now especially when its getting warmer out.”

Weddings for 2020 had postponements but most were cancelled.

Traditionally, weddings are booked around the fall and spring timelines. Couples attitudes have changed and will now book for any time of the year that suites their schedules, said Samolis.

As bookings are on the rise, guest count is becoming smaller. The attrition rate is the percentage of guests invited that will decline the invite.

“Guest count has been decreasing because of travel restrictions and people are scared,” said Samolis.

Before covid, attrition rates were at about 15% for the Sky Armory, said Samolis. Those numbers have increased to about 30-40% since the pandemic hit.

The Sky Armory is working towards keeping guests safe to reduce those concerns. Their ballrooms are around 8600 sq. feet enough room to be able to spread tables out. Each event will have around three dance floors to keep guests separated, Samolis said.

Ionization machines have been installed throughout the building to filtrate the air and kill the virus, said Samolis.

“There was concern last spring about recirculating the virus through the HVAC system and so we don’t have that issue here,” said Samolis.

Saturday the venue already did two weddings each with just under 100 people attending. The guests were tested prior and 50% of guests were vaccinated, Samolis said.



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