Married on Main Street: Calera hosts first-ever wedding on Main Street

Published 2:14 pm Friday, October 6, 2023

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By ANNA GRACE MOORE | Magazine Editor

On Saturday, Sept. 23 at Collectivus Church in Calera, Jimi and Michelle Judiscak were married in an intimate ceremony put on by the Married on Main Street program—a subsidiary of Calera Main Street.

Watching newlyweds Jimi and Michelle Judiscak say their “I Do’s” in front of family and friends, several loved ones in attendance shed a few light tears as the room filled with the warmth of the happiness that exuded from everyone’s smiles.

“We are gathered here today to celebrate the love that Jimi and Michelle have discovered in each other and to witness the union of two souls and commitment that will last a lifetime,” officiant Tom Braddock said.

Michelle, who opted for an eggshell white, A-line gown with Chantilly lace, captured the breath of every guest in the room. Her poise and elegance, the rare definition of beauty, was only accentuated by her subtle yet stunningly beautiful, three-pearl necklace and glowy makeup style–compliments of Jasmine Davis with SAVVY Salon.

The bride walked down the aisle to Ruelle’s “I Get to Love You,” the perfect song for the loveliest couple. Such a melodious charm erupted from the congregation as Jimi and Michelle’s loved ones clapped and cheered for the newlyweds when they took their first steps as a married couple, arm in arm.

Although the Judiscak’s nuptials were quite enchanting, the event venue, Collectivus Church, too, was decorated top-to-bottom in wondrous delight for the big day.

“[Jimi and Michelle] have been wonderful and were great to work with,” Ben Nelson, Pastor of Collectivus Church said. “We love that we get to be a part of this special day.”

The church was adorned in fall florals with gorgeous, autumn tablescapes, compliments of plant Gifts and Decor, decorating every table. The crimson ranunculus, light greenery and baby’s breath elements accentuated each bouquet so eloquently, contributing to the subtle theme of the reception.

Jory Heindel of The Martini Shakers performed smooth jazz and mo-town renditions, including tunes such as “Can’t Help Falling in Love.”

Guests enjoyed a caffeine and cocktails bar, made possible by Adventurer’s Coffee Co., and were even able to taste Michelle’s signature dragon fruit mimosa. Gumbo to Geaux catered the event, providing made-to-order, hot bar dishes, tailored to the likes of each guest’s request.

To pay homage to the couple’s love of camping, Nedra Moore with Creations Galore and Moore executed a fabulous, three-tier cake design. The top tier, which was her token “wedding” flavor–a mix of flavors combining the couple’s sweetness–was overlaid with a buttercream icing and decorated with crimson, orange and yellow flowers. The bottom two tiers were filled with cupcakes including flavors of s’mores, strawberry and lemon.

To end the evening right, Michelle and Jimi exited the church under a sparkler-lit send off, riding away in a vintage, 1958 Ford Fairlane 500 Skyliner, chauffeured by Dennis Torrealba with DAT Classic Ride.

Weddings are always a feat for the vendors who come in clutch, but it should be noted that every vendor who came together to support Michelle and Jimi’s new journey were brought together through the organizational skills of Jackie Batson, Executive Director of Calera Main Street.

“It’s difficult to sell a bride on a wedding if she can’t see images of a wedding in that location, so we wanted to come up with a way to put Calera on the map as a wedding destination,” Batson said.

Batson gathered several business owners in downtown Calera to brainstorm ideas to not only help show the county all that historic downtown Calera has to offer, but also help boost the local economy by supporting small, local businesses.

The brainchild of those sessions became “Married on Main Street.” This program involved more than a dozen Calera businesses who each donated their time and talents to throw a wedding in Collectivus Church.

The program, which would have retailed at more than a $20,000 value, was introduced to the public as a contest, in which interested couples had to like and share the original Facebook post to enter. Fifty couples were then chosen to attend a bridal fair, which featured every vendor who was participating in the contest.

The vendors then picked three couples to go on to the third and final round, and the public voted on their favorite couples on social media with the couple having the most likes and comments being selected as the winner.

Talking about the Married on Main Street program, Moore said, “It is an opportunity for us to bring joy and celebration to two special people in an unique and meaningful way.”

While Michelle and Jimi won the contest, the other 49 couples were able to receive a discount if they had their weddings at Collectivus Church. Vendors offered discounts for each of the other couples, too.

“We have always envisioned a ‘Calera wedding,’ utilizing all our Main Street merchants and our beautiful Collectivus Event Center,” Batson said. “Downtown Calera makes a great place to get married.”

Looking to the future, Batson said that Calera Main Street hopes to continue the Married on Main Street program, but it would not be without the support of every local business who makes this program possible.