It’s been a whirlwind three months for Michelle LeBlanc and Tony Wood.

Since winning the Marry Me, Halifax contest in February, the Amherst couple has been busy planning — travelling back and forth to Halifax to meet with vendors, pick the perfect outfits, select the flowers and design the ceremony.

Now, with less than a week until the big day, the couple is breathing a sigh of relief that their wedding is finally in place.
“I’m gonna need a long nap after the wedding,” LeBlanc joked. “But it has all been so worth it.”

The stage is set for the couple’s May 17 wedding. Taking place in the elegant Compass Room at Casino Nova Scotia, no expense has been spared in making it a dream come true.

Marry Me, Halifax wedding planner Mahoganey Marcial is thrilled with how the plans have come together.

“It was an exciting experience to be able to help someone have the wedding of their dreams,” Marcial said. “Michelle and Tony are both truly appreciative for everything being given, and they were also a lot of fun to work with.”

But planning a wedding with not just the input of the bride and groom, but the input of an entire city, posed its own set of challenges.
“As a planner, it is generally the clients and myself who choose the vendors to suit their style and budget,” Marcial explained. “In this situation, the most challenging part would have been balancing Tony and Michelle’s wants with the wants of the public. We’re lucky that Tony and Michelle are easy going people!”

Marcial made a surprising discovery about the public as she watched the votes roll in.

“Halifax is very traditional city,” she said. “I was surprised that the readers tended to all choose traditional items over the more contemporary.”

For LeBlanc, balancing a busy life with a 13-year-old and a one-year-old is hectic enough, so she was happy to leave the choices up to the public.

“Having other people make the decisions for us was awesome for me,” she said. “And it’s unique because everyone had a part in making our dream to be married become a reality.”

Wood’s touching account of his bride-to-be’s battle with cancer and the couple’s triumph over adversity captured the hearts of readers, who gave them the win with 38 per cent of 6,000 votes cast. The couple was initially set to wed on July 7, 2007, but due to LeBlanc’s treatment and recovery, they were forced call it off.

So, LeBlanc and Wood have done more than their share of waiting for their wedding day.

“Sometimes good luck can come from bad luck, and in our situation, that’s what happened,” Wood said.

“Through this whole experience, Tony’s proven once again that he is the one for me,” LeBlanc said.

“I’m just looking forward to getting married,” Wood said. “We’ve been waiting a little longer than we had expected, so it makes it more exciting.

“We’ve met a lot of people through this contest and they were all so good to us,” LeBlanc said. “We’ve also received so much support from family, friends and people we’ve never even met. I can’t tell you how much that has meant to us.”

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