Wedding Planner's Typo Leads to Controversy with Tennessee Gay Couple

Wednesday September 1, 2021

A gay Tennessee couple thought they had found their wedding venue, especially since the owner put in an email, "We offer same-sex marriage ceremonies only."

According to Pink News, Mike Gill and Coty Heaton found "Barn in the Bend, a rustic wedding venue in Madison, Tennessee, and thought it was a perfect fit."

They thought the statement that the venue only offered same-sex marriage ceremonies a bit odd, but Gill contacted the venue's owner Jackie Daniel who appeared responsive to their inquiry and offered to set up a tour.

An hour later he received a second email from Daniel, whose signature had now been changed to read: "We do not offer same-sex marriage ceremonies."

In a series of emails, she said that she had some memory of speaking with Gill on the phone, but couldn't remember if he had mentioned his partner was a man. She added that she "didn't want to waste his time," going on to say, "We do not offer same-sex marriages here."

Gill, TMZ writes, "told Jackie he'd let everyone in the area know that BITB was bigoted, but Jackie let him know her decision was based on her religious beliefs, saying, 'I wish you the best in life and the best future in all that you do.'"

Gill wrote on Facebook: "We want to reiterate that the intent behind yesterday's post wasn't to get the business to change their mind, the point was to make people in our community aware of their business practices and make an informed decision. While the fallout from this has been unexpected, it turns out a lot of people don't like those practices and wanted to voice that."

"The LGBT+ community and allies rallied around the engaged gay couple, and took to the wedding venue's TripAdvisor page to share their thoughts in a flurry of one-star reviews," adds Pink News.

One commenter wrote: "In 2021, we still have absolutely HATEFUL, unaccepting people who, unfortunately, own businesses... I will make sure to reach out to all musicians, photographers, event planners that I know to make sure they cross this bigoted business off their list."