Let the wedding planning begin!

A date has been set!  Kansas City’s Most Deserving Couple, Marlena and Adam, have selected October 8th as their wedding date.  It is always a beautiful time of year in Kansas City and the Adam had his heart set on an October wedding.  

Our bride and groom visited The Vow Exchange this week and we had a wonderful time planning their wedding ceremony.  They will exchange their vows at 5:00 p.m. in a candlelit ceremony.  Marlena was all smiles as we started talking about the details (Adam mentioned over and over how sweet it was watching Marlena getting so excited about the wedding details).  

They have selected their wedding party and even have a close friend who they would like to officiate the ceremony. Marlena and Adam want a very intimate wedding with a whole lot of fun! Our couple loves each other so much and it shows when they talk about their special day.

Next up is a visit to Affare to begin planning their beautiful wedding reception and then picking their wedding flowers at Hitched Planning & Floral.  

Thanks Marlena and Adam for letting us come along with you on your wedding adventure!

Kansas City Wedding Professionals join in to help "Kansas City's Most Deserving Couple"

That term "it takes a village" applies in many ways when someone is in need. From raising children and helping those less fortunate, the kindness and generosity of our community never fails to deliver. Which is why we at The Vow Exchange were not at all surprised when a great group of our peers joined in to help out our winning couple. From a wedding dress to the celebration after the wedding, area businesses jumped right in to contribute to making this couple's day extra special. So what exactly will they get? We thought you'd never ask. See the below prize package for our lucky couple Adam & Marlena:

An "Affare" to remember!

Bartender Chelsea whipping up a delicious cocktail

Bartender Chelsea whipping up a delicious cocktail

Restaurant owners Katrin & Martin of Affare were thrilled to help out Adam & Marlena who they already happened to know! (Kansas City is such a small town sometimes) Affare, a locally owned bistro right on Main Street in the crossroads, is giving our couple a cocktail reception in their private dining room and private terrace. The couple and their closest 40 friends and family will toast the night away while noshing on Affare's delectable delights.

Platinum Productions, 

Kris Nardini knows how to throw a party, seriously. His company Platinum Productions provides the pop and pizzaz for weddings but more importantly for some of Kansas City's biggest live events (anyone heard of a little local group known as Quixotic?). Platinum will be there to bring our couple's celebration to life. We're pretty sure all will be talking about it for years to come.

Horray for Hitched Planning & Floral!

Jessica Corbett, recently a bride herself, knows how to create memorable flowers for her brides. One of our own resident florists at The Vow Exchange, Hitched Planning + Floral will be dressing our couple's celebration with fresh looks and fragrant florals. 

There's something about Something White Bridal.

Brittany Scott who opened Something White Bridal just doors away from the Sprint Center, has an eye for beauty. From the way her gowns are set up in her shop to the casual yet elegant seating surrounding floor to ceiling mirrors, it's hard not to feel gorgeous from the moment you walk in her door. Brittany is giving our "Most Deserving" bride Marlena a dress of her choice (I personally can not WAIT to join in the dress shopping!). We are all beyond excited to see this lovely bride down the aisle in the utmost style!

He'll be handsome in "Houndstooth".

The day I met Jeff Covitz of Houndstooth, he was attending to a gentleman who was shopping for his wedding day suit. I was immediately impressed by his deep knowledge of Men's wear, what tailoring techniques looked best on his customer and how SUPER helpful he was to this Groom-to-be. Which is why we were thrilled when he offered to "suit up" our "Most Deserving" groom. There's not doubt Adam will be the best dressed Groom on his wedding day!

Feeling like royalty in a Kingdom Limo.


Tyris Horton, owner of Kingdom Transportation, was once a groom at The Vow Exchange himself! He and his lovely bride Christi shared their vows with us last August. Tyris was so thrilled with his celebration he wanted to work with us further, and we couldn't be more excited. As a new business in the KC metro, Kingdom Transportation aims to provide couples with the royal treatment on their special day. None more deserving that our "Most Deserving" couple who will arrive to their celebration in style in one of Tyris's gorgeous limousines.

As for wedding planning, our couple is just getting started making their selections with these fabulous contributors. Stay tuned here on our blog to follow their road to the altar, and join in the joy as our amazing couple Adam & Marlena plan their celebration! 

Announcing Kansas City's Most Deserving Couple!

    At The Vow Exchange, we wanted to give away a free intimate wedding ceremony. We asked people to nominate a couple who they feel are ‘Kansas City’s Most Deserving Couple’ – a couple who wants more than anything to get married, yet has had to endure such hardship that they cannot afford to make their wedding day a reality.  

    We partnered with seven local companies and sponsored a contest where anyone could nominate a couple who they thought deserved to win a wedding. And the response was overwhelming – not only the scores of nominated couples and their stories of love and strength through hardship after hardship, but the outpouring of support from those who nominated them.

    With so many nominations, and so many deserving couples, it was hard for us to pick one to win. But we did. We found a couple who has been engaged for years, and endured multiple setbacks that might have ended a love that was not as strong as theirs.

    Marlena Hayes and Adam Lichtenauer are an interracial couple who are celebrating 10 years together this February. While they have all the support in the world from her family and their friends, there have been some people in their lives who are uncomfortable with the thought of their relationship. Having to pay for the wedding themselves, they’ve been working extra shifts for years to save enough money to realize the dream of their big day.  

    But life has kept getting in the way. They’ve endured car accidents, depression, and four deaths in the bride's family within eighteen months of each other. And they’ve kept having to dig into their savings. Most recently they received a 30-day notice to vacate their home of 5 years because the landlord sold the house. Despite it all, they're happy because they’re together.

     Adam has a big smile and an even bigger heart. He's the drummer for local band, taught drum lessons to troubled youth and for School of Rock, and he’s a live music sound engineer.  Marlena is clever and happy, and will do anything to help a friend. When she isn't tending bar, she’s volunteering with a group she created called Zen & Sin that helps women rebuild their confidence and self-esteem.   

    They don’t ask for much, just to work hard and live a good life together. And this Valentine’s Day, we surprised them with the wonderful news that we are giving them a free wedding package. They will receive a ceremony from us at The Vow Exchange in downtown Kansas City for them and up to 40 guests, a bride’s gown from Something White Bridal Boutique, groom’s attire from Houndstooth custom tailored fine men’s clothing, lighting and music from Platinum Productions, flowers from Hitched Planning & Floral, limousine service from Kingdom Transportation, and a cocktail reception at Affare restaurant.

    Planning for the wedding will begin very soon, and all fittings, sponsor visits, and the buildup to the big day will be documented by Her Life Magazine. You can ‘like’ our Vow Exchange Facebook page to receive updates of each step in the planning process, and see photos of the couple as they happily plan and eagerly await their big day.  

    Please join us in congratulating Marlena and Adam. And we hope you will also celebrate them and show your support by following the joy of their wedding planning process on Facebook. Theirs is truly a love story worth telling, and we cannot wait to see it unfold!