NEWS

Bride scrambling after virus derails wedding plans

09/05/2012 07:53 EDT | Updated 11/05/2012 05:12 EST
A bride whose wedding was planned to take place Saturday at the Stanhope Beach Resort has been scambling to find a new venue since an illness outbreak forced her venue to cancel.

The province's health department shut down food and beverage service at the resort and the adjacent Red Dory restaurant after and second outbreak of norovirus made a reported 115 people sick last weekend.

Brittany Stephen has been calling and messaging guests and prospective wedding venues since she received a call Tuesday afternoon that her Saturday wedding would have to be cancelled.

"Panic, sheer panic. Tears," Stephen said that is how she felt when she got the call. "You plan your day for so long, I mean for the past over a year, I've been imaging my day at Stanhope Beach Resort."

Stephen is not the only bride making last minute changes. Another wedding is scheduled at the Stanhope this weekend and more in weeks to come.

Paul Murphy, VP of finance and corporate counsel with D.P. Murphy Inc., representing the resort said the resort is trying to figure out a solution.

"We've reached out to a number of our guests coming up the next few weeks," Murphy told CBC News in a phone interview on Tuesday.

"We're working hard with them to make alternative arrangements, whether it be another property of ours or another facility that can handle their weddings or meetings."

Two weekends ago, 60 cases of norovirus were reported. There were no new cases in the interim.

Though proper cleaning procedures were followed after the first outbreak two weeks ago, Murphy says shutting down food service will help contain the problem.

"I think this time the big difference will be with us being shut down, it will allow us to not have people coming and going, which is probably what caused it to reappear," he says, "So this break will allow us to fully sanitize everything without having guests come in which should allow the problem to be solved."

"It's certainly bad news, that's the frustrating part is often times — this could have happened to anybody. We know in Halifax, The Bicycle Thief recently had a similar outbreak so it's not necessarily in our control and that's the tough part to swallow."

Stephen said the important thing is that is still getting married this weekend and she has managed to book another venue.

"No hard feelings against them. It's not their fault. They, seemingly, are genuinely upset it had to happen this way. I mean they're losing business. They just lost all our money," said Stephen.

"I think if we can survive this, then we're pretty good. Like I said, I mean people aren't there to see a room. They're there to see us, and it's not about a room for us, it's about marrying each other.

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