Mackinac Island Comes To The Rescue Of Newlyweds
Sunday's fire did more than damage one of the island's older cottages, it almost took out a wedding celebration as well. Key word: almost.
The huge blaze that damaged the third floor of the Brigadoon Cottage on the historic island also impacted a wedding taking place nearby.
A couple identified as simply "Jake and Elizabeth" were forced to evacuate their own reception at the Mackinac Island Yacht Club because of the fire.
Island Fire Chief Jason St. Onge told the story of how residents of the tourist community came together to save the reception on the Mackinac Island News and Views Facebook Page.
According to St. Onge, the couple had been married earlier in the day Sunday at Mackinac Island's St. Anne's Catholic Church. You may remember hearing about the church back in March when it was vandalized by squirrels.
This wasn't the wedding date that they had originally planned, but their nuptials had to be moved back a year due to the pandemic.
The reception was held outdoors at the Mackinac Island Yacht Club, which is directly next door to the Brigadoon Cottage - which we all know caught fire Sunday evening.
According to St. Onge, just as Elizabeth's father had begun his speech, guests saw smoke coming from the neighboring cottage.
The magical day was suddenly interrupted, just as it had been canceled by Covid a year earlier. The guests were evacuated, and nobody really knew what would happen next.
Brandon recognizing what was happening, picked up his phone, called his bosses and put a plan in action. The staff at Mission Point mobilized their convention personnel and many others including CEO Mark Ware and his sister, VP of Sales and Marketing Liz Ware. Within minutes, a plan was coming together. The wedding was being moved to Mission Point. Mark Ware would serve food, the head bellman would become a bartender, everyone would play a part.
And this is the Mackinac way. Where else can a wedding get canceled and reconvened in under 30 minutes just a few hundred yards away? I have lived here my whole life and on plenty of occasions I have seen the worst situations met with the greatest compassionate people you would ever meet. And now Jake and Elizabeth have too.