This is your chance to go to a wedding that has been dreamed about for a lifetime — and you don't even have to bring a present.
And while this is your invitation, there is an admission fee, but that's OK because it's for a great cause.
You'll have to hurry though because it is tonight June 10.
Readers of Uplift may remember a few months ago I wrote about the wedding of Linda Bauch.
Bauch, who was 72 at the time, had always dreamed about being a bride having watched as first her three siblings walked down the aisle, followed by her nieces and nephews.
But when it finally came to her own big day last year Bauch, who lives with Down syndrome, didn't need a groom. She just needed her loving caregivers at L'Arche Winnipeg to organize the event. With her full participation, they found the venue, sent out the invitations, picked a menu and caterer, a band, and two bouquets — one to keep and one to throw.
From all accounts, the wedding day was a happy occasion, there were a few tears of joy, and Bauch's smiles, laughs and repeated thank you's to everyone was a joy to behold.
You might have missed the wedding day, but you don't have to miss the wedding.
That's because L'Arche Winnipeg is holding a special fundraising event on Monday June 10.
Monique Pantel, who took photos and video of the wedding celebration, along with her dad, Hubert, who has worked and volunteered at L'Arche for decades, have created a short six-minute movie about Bauch's life and her wedding entitled "Linda's Wish" and they will be premiering it at the Park Theatre at 7 p.m. and again at 8:30 p.m.
"I really feel like the film captures the spirit of who Linda is, the full life she's lived, despite challenges and limitations, and at the same time honours the incredible work L'Arche Winnipeg does for those with intellectual disabilities in our community," she said.
"The movie and the wedding are really heartwarming. Linda's day was one of the most special things I've been able to capture. And I've known her my whole life."
That's because Pantel's dad, Hubert, moved his young family into a L'Arche home years ago and his daughter, quite literally, grew up with the residents they assisted.
And, by pulling out his camera through the years, Hubert ended up keeping a record of their memories.
"(Monique) was five years old when we moved in," he said.
"And now I'm glad I kept all of my black and white negatives. I took my camera out for community gatherings, parties, Halloween. And I had some from an old video camera. I had footage of (Bauch) blowing her birthday candles out.
"To appreciate it, you have to look back 45 years ago when people with disabilities were in the institution in Portage la Prairie - they had 1,000 people there at one point. The film reveals where we were and where we are now.
"And on her special day it made us appreciate she is her own person and free to be herself."
You won't have to catch the bouquet, but you may have to catch yourself from shedding a tear.
- Kevin Rollason
Local D-Day vets talk about heroism
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Strike and song
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Multiculturalism and friendship
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Celebration for Freedom Road
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Digital course for students leads to jobs
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