COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) – A Colorado Springs bride who reached out to the 11 Call For Action team after her wedding venue abruptly closed officially has a new wedding date and venue.
Ashley Humberstone contacted 11 News in March after learning her wedding venue, The Rustic Lace Barn, shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Humberstone lost more than $5,000.
11 News spoke with two other brides in the same situation and exchanged emails with the venue owner. After our 11 Call For Action Investigation aired in May, support poured in for the impacted brides.
“My husband and I have recently started an Event Center in Falcon, CO. We would love to offer our venue at no cost to one of the couples that reached out to Call For Action,” wrote Cindy of Still Waters Ranch Event Center.
“Although I can’t provide a venue, I am happy to marry any of these couples for free,” wrote Rebecca, an ordained minister.
The offers even reached beyond state lines.
“If any of these brides would like to have their wedding at our place, we will gladly accommodate,” wrote Al’s Hideaway, a cabin and RV rental business in Texas.
11 News passed along the offers to the brides. Humberstone said she was overwhelmed with the response.
“These people totally screwed us over,” she said about her original venue. “Totally took everything, didn’t care, acted like everything was still running perfectly normal, and so that was devastating, to then turn around and all of these people coming out of the woodwork … It was just like, ‘Wow.’”
The owner of Black Forest Meadows, an outdoor wedding venue that’s almost up and running, also reached out.
“I felt a call for action as soon as I heard the couples’ stories,” Deborah Ritchey said. “I felt like I needed to do something.”
Ritchey offered to provide her venue free of charge. It boasts a grassy knoll for the ceremony with a breathtaking view of Pikes Peak in the background, a rustic barn for a bridal suite, a sand volleyball and badminton court, a horseshoe pit, and even alpacas.
Humberstone set her wedding date for Oct. 16.
“When we picked the date, I was like, ‘So that’s like five months,’ and then now I’m like, ‘OK so that’s like almost four months away. Hey, I have no idea what I’m doing,’” Humberstone said with a laugh. “I talk to Miss Deborah all the time. I’m like, ‘Help,’ because it’s just, it’s so exciting but it’s like, we’re really, truly in, like, the full swing of getting married.”
Ritchey, a former wedding planner herself, even helped connect Humberstone with other vendors, since her previous venue was all-inclusive.
“When Ashley contacted me, I just felt like I wanted to embrace her with a big hug over the phone and reassure her and comfort her that her wedding dreams were not going to be crushed by anyone,” Ritchey said.
Several of Humberstone’s other vendors are also offering free or discounted services.
“They took the time and went out of their way for us and offered their services to other brides, like, that’s phenomenal,” Humberstone said.
As for hosting other weddings, Ritchey said she’s just waiting for final approval from El Paso County to officially open Black Forests Meadows. She’s hoping everything will be ready to go sometime this summer. To find out more about the wedding venue, visit their website.
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