Weddings may feel more normal under the less-restrictive orange tier

An empty reception venue at Portola Inn.
Posted at 7:23 PM, Apr 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-29 00:24:17-04

San Luis Obispo County is now in the Orange Tier, which means the lessening of restrictions on gatherings, including weddings.

The county officially transitioned on Tuesday, April 27, which means businesses, venues, vendors, and consumers can resume some normalcy.

Weddings as well as receptions can take place indoors, with greater capacity, depending on whether the guests and wedding party have proof of a recent negative COVID-19 test or full vaccination.

Now, if they mask up, continue to socially distance, and have proof, wedding parties can host up to 150 people indoors (depending on the venue's capacity) and up to 300 people outdoors.

KSBY spoke with some members of the wedding industry, including a priest, venue proprietor, and catering vendor to find out their reaction to the changes.

Father Matt Pennington of Nativity of Our Lady Catholic Community said, “We have around 600 registered families, so with the pavilion we have now, it just makes everything easier. Our intention is to keep it until the month of May, maybe even through the summer.”

Tom O'Malley, the former mayor of Atascadero, owns a venue called Portola Inn. He said, “Most venues are in the same situation as we were. When COVID hit last year, we had well over 20 to 30 weddings, all had to get rescheduled up to 4 times.”

Leon Castillo, owner of Popolo Catering, said he is receiving so many catering requests it is like “[Trying to] cram two years worth of weddings into one year, which means we are really busy.”

Masks and socially distancing are a requirement.