The Lesbian and Gay Wedding Expo is our favorite NEW event of the season! Read's exclusive interview with David Stern of the Lesbian and Gay Wedding Expo!

What sets this event apart from other events of its type?

Now that marriage equality has returned to California permanently, the Los Angeles wedding industry is embracing lesbian and gay couples that wish to marry. Many gays and lesbians never even imagined they would ever be able to get married. Now they are suddenly faced with navigating the sometimes overwhelming task of planning a wedding. Some gays and lesbians may be apprehensive about walking into a bridal or tuxedo shop and face explaining their relationship without knowing if the shop owner is supportive of gay marriage. They will meet people who have planned gay weddings and can help them sort through choices about location, clothing, invitations and what type of ceremony they want to host. The expo will be their one-stop shop for planning the wedding of their dreams in a supportive, festive, fun environment.  The event will include breakout sessions relevant to the gay community, including panels about immigration issues, fertility and financial planning. Customized to the needs of gay and lesbian couples, this expo will set the stage for thousands of fantastic ceremonies.

How does this event represent/reflect the LGBT culture of the community/city it is held in?

The expo is being held to support lesbian and gay couples in exercising their rights to plan the wedding of their dreams. Obviously our community is going to seize upon this long denied opportunity and will raise the art of planning a wedding to a whole new level. Instead of planning events for other people, gays will finally be able to bring their own, frequently non-traditional sensibility to shake up how everyone plans weddings.

What should guests expect from this event?

Guests should expect to meet people who can answer just about any question they have about wedding planning. They should expect to meet people who can help them navigate all aspects of planning their ceremony, from picking a caterer, choosing a cake and selecting a band. In addition, they should expect to meet people who are supportive of their plans and can help them figure out what they need to make their wedding day special and unique. They will be embraced by classic old Hollywood charm and surrounded by businesses in the wedding industry they know are LGBT friendly.  They will leave with their questions answered and any fears they have relieved. They should expect to have a fun day and leave with a smile on their face.

What is the history of this event, or the work leading up to it?

Frontiers has been a trusted brand for the LGBT community for over 30 years.. Frontiers Media was inspired to create this event because the community needs a high-quality wedding expo targeted specifically for our community. Until now, gays have been systematically excluded from the wedding industry. Our couples want to work with people who they know are gay friendly and supportive of our community. By signing up to exhibit at the expo, our wedding industry professionals are making a strong statement that they support our community and deserve our business. Last year Frontiers Media hosted an auto show to connect gay and lesbians with gay-friendly car dealers. This year we are connecting couples with people in the wedding industry who support us and want our business.

How has this event impacted the local and broader LGBT community?

This event will celebrate the recent return of marriage equality to California. We will be there to support couples as they plan their special day and encourage them to dream big.  In addition to strengthening the bonds of our loving couples, we also expect gay weddings to have a huge impact on the local economy. Many gay and lesbian people are involved in the hospitality and tourism industry, where we expect gay weddings will open an all new and lucrative sector for the wedding planning industry and bring new jobs to the city. Whether their weddings is just a  small, intimate events with a few friends or an over the top extravaganza, gays and lesbians in California are sure to have an enormous influence on the style and energy of all weddings. This expo is just the first large scale event of many events that will welcome lesbians and gays into the nuptial arena.

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