Fresno County couple forced out of wedding venue due to flooding

Vince Ybarra Image
Monday, April 10, 2023
Fresno County couple forced out of wedding venue due to flooding
Extreme weather has created challenges for many people in Central California. But for one couple, it's taken a toll on their wedding plans.

FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- Extreme weather has created challenges for many people in Central California. But for one couple, it's taken a toll on their wedding plans. They've been scrambling to make last-minute changes after their venue in Sanger flooded last week.

"I felt like just giving up on everything and the whole universe was kind of against us. It was a miserable feeling," said Fresno County resident Samantha Shepard.

She got a gut-wrenching call from her fiancé of two years on Thursday. She found out the Sanger property where they were supposed to get married might not be available because of flooding in the wake of several storms. Frazzled, she picked up her wedding dress. She said she didn't try it on initially, but when she did, she noticed, something was off.

"I came home, and I put the dress on, and it was just a mess. Didn't fit me anymore. Completely lop-sided. Hanging off of me," said Shepard.

She went back to the tailor to ask if they could fix her dress. She said she didn't receive the help needed. And she was body shamed by one of the employees. Eventually, she received a refund. But then the venue fear became a reality.

"My fiancé called me and said 'Hey, the owner gave us our money back, we don't have a venue now,'" said Shepard.

Upset, she said she and her fiancé made a Facebook post about their ordeal.

"A lot of people started reaching out to us. It was so nice. It made feel like we had a little bit of hope, at least for a venue," said Shepard.

She said they don't have a venue picked out just yet, but the social media post did lead to a different blessing.

"Last night my amazing decorator that we hired, she set up for me to meet this morning with Ivory Bridal Boutique. They donated a dress to me, so I got a dress. It was completely free, one hundred percent donation," said Shepard.

She also received some advice from a friend that had helped her find peace.

"God makes things happen for a reason and now you're getting not what you wanted but you're something pretty close, if not better now," said Shepard.

The couple still plans to get married in two weeks because they and their loved ones have already made arrangements with that date in mind.

Shepard said they are looking at a venue in the next couple of days. She's hopeful they will find a place to celebrate their love by the original wedding date.

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