After Canceling Wedding Reception, Bride and Groom Head to Shelter with Food

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On August 15, newlyweds Tyler and Melanie Tapajna swept around a hall in Cleveland, Ohio, chatting with attendees over the delicious reception food.

Of course, given the times, the bride and groom wore masks — but that wasn’t the only unique part of the wedding. The happy couple was talking to guests they’d never met before.

That’s because their “reception” was being held at Laura’s Home Women’s Crisis Center, part of The City Mission, which assists the homeless.

The couple had canceled their original reception to respect the health of their family and friends, but instead of canceling their food order (which they could have done), they donated it to the women’s shelter, benefiting both the shelter and the food truck they chose for catering.

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“We were able to have a 100% refund [on the food],” Melanie told CBS. “We chose to donate it instead.”


“These newlyweds are here to make your day!” The City Mission shared on Facebook on August 15.

“When Melanie and Tyler’s formal wedding reception was canceled due to COVID-19, they decided they not only wanted to donate their reception food to our guests at Laura’s Home, but also to serve the meal in their gown and suit!”

“We pray this amazing couple is blessed immensely in their marriage, and thank them for inviting our guests to their wedding feast.”

“It’s not unusual for us to have volunteers serving meals in our building … but certainly this was not common and it caused quite a stir,” Rich Trickel, CEO of The City Mission, said.

“I remember a mom and her two little daughters coming up in the line, and the two little girls standing on their tiptoes to get a better glimpse of the bride in her wedding dress.”

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According to a post by the bride, she and her beau were happy to be able to celebrate the way they did, by serving others.

“As Tyler Tapajna and I lay down after a long day, we are reminiscing on all of the smiling faces we met today,” she shared. “We were blessed to be surrounded by such love and courtesy by The City Mission. We were welcomed with cheers and a nice ‘welcome to your reception’.”

“Covid may have cancelled our original plans, but God gave us so much more today. Thank you to Betty’s Bomb A Burgers for continuing to work with us through these uncertain times, and being so wonderful on agreeing to help us make this day special for these amazing families.”

The couple managed to serve over 100 meals to children and their mothers, and they got lots of photos to remember their very special day and the joy they brought to total strangers.

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking