Weddings business booming in Rockhampton

BEEF and saleyards, mining and coal trains seem to be more Rockhampton's pace than bridal lace and cocktail parties, yet the wedding industry is by all accounts booming.

Not only did 486 couples tie the knot here last year but those involved in all things weddings are talking about 2016 being a record year with bookings running hot for next year as well.

"It has just been phenomenal, everyone is so busy here," said local celebrant and events company owner Danielle Hempseed.

"Rocky depends on mining so you think things may have slowed down but business is really good. All the celebrants are booked out. It is cheaper to get married here than Mackay so a lot of budget conscious couples come down to us and there are also so many couples from out west who want to have a beach wedding."

Yeppoon, which played host to almost 140 weddings last year continues to be a popular location, its beautiful beaches and tropical climate a lure for the loved-up and their nearest and dearest. But it is a venue just five kilometres outside Yeppoon, says Ms Hempseed, that is quickly making its mark.

"Kanangra Heights is this amazingly beautiful property on seven acres," she said.

"It has the sea views people like and you have private use of this great outdoor space. The function room has an edgy European feel, the food is delicious, it is a really unique place."

Henderson Park with its country feel, versatility and renowned beauty is also a favourite for nuptials with Ms Hempseed officiating at a number of events there each month and her company Lily and Lotus kept busy doing the planning.

"We have a lot of country people here who love the country setting and farm retreat style of Henderson Park. You get exclusive use of venue, there is accommodation on site, and you can bring in your own caterers and alcohol if you want," Ms Hempseed said.

"It is absolutely beautiful and has so many spaces that can be used depending on how big your wedding is. It is pristine, private, and the service is excellent."


While every wedding is different there is a definite trend to make them unique and couples are opting for more casual affairs with lots to keep guests occupied.

"Cocktail weddings are really increasing in popularity, people don't want a structured sit-down formal thing, they just want good food, good company, good music, in a nice setting with the people that mean the most to them. It saves a bit of money in hiring tables and chairs and food is usually cheaper too."

"Interactive dining experiences such as build your own pizza become part of the entertainment. Gone are the days of the guest lingering around waiting for the couple to get photos taken, we do lawn games, grazing stations, mimosa stands, photo booths and a lot more geared to guest entertainment."


Top five Rockhampton wedding locations last year:

* Rockhampton - 143

* Yeppoon - 137

* Emerald - 43

* Rockhampton North - 22

* Zilzie - 20

Study finds special wedding dates more likely to end in divorce

CHOOSING Valentine's Day or a special number date for your wedding might seem quirky and romantic but a new study suggests it can spell doom for your marriage.

University of Melbourne economists discovered weddings celebrated on gimmick dates were 18-36% more likely to end in divorce than weddings on ordinary dates.

The report, Not Your Lucky Day: Romantically and Numerically Special Wedding Date Divorce Risks, revealed February 14 and same number dates such as 9/9/99 were up to five times more popular for nuptials than ordinary dates.

Report authors Dr Jan Kabatek and Professor David Ribar found differences in characteristics of couples who married on special dates explained some of the higher divorce risks.

These factors included they were more likely to have been married before and have children already, and were less alike in terms of education and age than spouses who married on ordinary dates.

The researchers said it was not the date that increased a couple's vulnerability but rather what the choice of date revealed about them.

"Couples who marry on ordinary dates may be more strongly influenced by characteristics of their relationships and their compatibility than couples who marry on special dates," Prof Ribar said.

The study used Dutch registries that covered all marriages and divorces in that country between 1999 and 2013.


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