Showcase is one-stop shopping for area brides
By BY NICOLE COBLER - SPECIAL TO THE ADVOCATE
Jan. 3, 2014 at 11:05 p.m.
Updated Jan. 3, 2014 at 7:04 p.m.
Before walking down the aisle, Victoria brides-to-be can find their one-stop shop for dresses, caterers, wedding planners and other necessities.
The Pilot Club of Victoria's 24th annual bridal showcase will bring more than 60 exhibitors and between 500 and 600 participants to the Victoria Community Center on Jan. 12.
The event is the club's main moneymaker. The proceeds go toward helping those in the community with brain-related injuries and disorders, said Susan Riedesel, bridal showcase chairwoman.
Riedesel said the club donates a portion of its money to Project Lifesaver, the club's largest program that is dedicated to helping those who have dementia or memory problems. The money can buy equipment such as armbands for Alzheimer's patients.
"It's hard for the city and county to budget money for different things that they need, so this is one way we can solicit the money to be able to have this program," Riedesel said.
For more than two decades, the bridal showcase has expanded - from its first year as a fashion show in the Victoria Mall to occupying the entire community center, said co-chairwoman Sandra Guillott.
"It's our largest fundraiser, so it enables us to continue helping the community," Guillott said. "The community and vendors benefit greatly from it, and it's a one-stop place for everybody in our area."
Christina Cook, owner of All About the Dress, started exhibiting at the bridal showcase in 2007 as a wedding planner before she owned her business. She said she will exhibit All About the Dress again in the showcase because of last year's success.
"Pilot Club's bridal show is the biggest in our area," Cook said. "It brings in the most clients, brides and is the most well put together."
Cook said she continues to participate because of the potential to reach out to brides in the area. She said she also enjoys helping an organization that is giving back to the community.
Brides can even find the perfect caterer for their special day.
Mike Pozzi, owner of Mike Pozzi Catering, who is participating in his third year at the bridal showcase, said he uses the event as a way to allow brides to sample his food.
"It really makes it convenient for the brides to get everyone in one place at one time." Pozzi said.