Halloween, Homecoming, and Hotels

We are getting married at the end of October, near Halloween, and Halloween in Chapel Hill is a big freakin’ deal. The town of Chapel Hill has been promoting a “Homegrown Halloween” and trying to tone it down from the 80,000 folks who attended in years past. Since Chapel Hill only has about 55,000 people in it, that’s a lot of extra people running around in costumes on Franklin Street.

See? (Image via Dr. Tom’s HipHappy Times)

It’s mostly college kids who stumble up and down Franklin Street, and of course Mr. Magic and I participated as well. Wanna see?


A devil in disguise – 2000


Our friends as the Clue characters


Mrs. Peacock and Mr. Green – 2002


Little Red Riding Ho(od) and BM Bunny – 2001


Holly Golightly (in the wake-up scene) with cat – 2007


Amy Winehouse – 2009


Mr. Magic and “Batman” as Dumbledore and Hermione

So, Halloween is a big deal, but won’t really affect our wedding because it really only gets crazy the day/night of Halloween. But then there is homecoming. Recently, I began feeling really stressed wondering when UNC’s homecoming weekend might be scheduled. But then I realized the town and university would be crazy to plan homecoming for that weekend, seeing as how they really have gone to great lengths to tone down the number of people coming into town for Halloween. I mean, they would be real idiots to plan those two major events so close together!

Ahem. They did. So now, Halloween is right near our wedding, and UNC’s homecoming is the SAME DAY as our wedding. And, if you remember, I was also told that our wedding weekend is one of the top eight most popular wedding weekends in 2011. Why is this a problem, you ask? Because many of the hotels have contracts with UNC that give them first dibs on the rooms. And we have a lot of guests who are coming in from out of town.

I may have had an overly dramatic initial reaction. I may have written something on Facebook that said “Hey, thanks, UNC! So what if I am still paying for my six years of undergraduate and graduate education that I got from you? It’s cool. Way to schedule homecoming on the day of our wedding! I guess our guests can just SLEEP ON THE STREET!!!”

Erm, yes. Just a bit overdramatic. Mr. Magic came to the rescue and immediately began calling hotels. Since we were literally calling places minutes after the homecoming date was announced, some hotels did not even know the date yet themselves. This ended up working to our advantage because we got the verbal go ahead from a hotel manager who said she’d be happy to set aside some room blocks for us. A week later, she said to me, “It’s a good thing you guys called so early! My supervisor told me we couldn’t have any room blocks that weekend because of homecoming, but since we already promised it to you, he is letting us honor that agreement.” Sweet!

Have you ever freaked out about something wedding related that turned out just fine?


Mrs. Magic

Chapel Hill, NC
Wedding Date:
October 2011
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  1. Member
    2bMrsG 954 posts, Busy bee @ 4:32 pm

    Wow, that is an awesome celebration! I wish our area made that big of a deal out of Halloween! We were so disappointed that we didn’t even get a single trick or treater in our neighborhood last year. We love Halloween and we’re having a Halloween themed wedding in Las Vegas, but we’re getting married on October 13th at night since 13 is my favorite number and it’s during the full moon. Plus, we don’t want to have our anniversary on Halloween every year. I wish you guys lived closer cuz it’s hard to find couples with similar interests around here.

  2. Member
    almostmrsc 240 posts, Helper bee @ 5:06 pm

    Are you getting married on the 29th? That’s what are date is. I love Halloween and the date just ended up being the only fall date our venue had open.. Score! My FI went to USC Columbia so I had to check when their homecoming was after the fact to see if his friends from there would be able to make it up.

  3. Member
    slmaynard 77 posts, Worker bee @ 8:45 pm

    I just want to follow you now because you’re in Chapel Hill and I’m in Greensboro and our wedding was in Cary. I LOVE finding people who are so close but you’ve never met. (call me random.. i know!)
    I know exactly what you mean about franklin street, i wish you all the best of luck and hope no drunks ruin your wedding day (as i dont think they will). smart planning to start calling as soon as you heard too 😉

  4. tartlet Member
    tartlet 3227 posts, Sugar bee @ 9:16 pm

    I’m glad you two were able to get the hotel blocks you needed! And, your Halloween costumes are *awesome*.

  5. painauchocolat Member
    painauchocolat 2298 posts, Buzzing bee @ 11:14 pm

    Way to be on the ball! Always nice when a little pre-planning and awareness works in your favor.

  6. barrettes Member
    barrettes 913 posts, Busy bee @ 5:44 am

    First of all, I love you as Amy Winehouse, second, you go girl for blocking those rooms out asap!

  7. elephant Member
    elephant 6339 posts, Bee Keeper @ 10:39 am

    That is great news that you were able to get in the room blocks!

  8. hyena Member
    hyena 2537 posts, Sugar bee @ 10:53 am

    I’m also in this same boat, except that I didn’t set aside room blocks … and apparently this city’s high school graduation is the same weekend as our wedding. We thought to check the university’s graduation date, but not the two local high schools … *facepalm*. So now my bridesmaids are like, uhhhh we can’t find any good hotels…

  9. msseal Member
    msseal 1179 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:10 pm

    Ughh, our room block gave me SUCH a headache. I am so happy that yours worked out for you!!! Also, completely loving your H-Ween pics—you as Amy Winehouse is Magical 😉

  10. Member
    kimerinw 10 posts, Newbee @ 7:05 am

    I live in Chapel Hill too!! Congratulations to you!! Good luck in October – the Barn is awesome :)

  11. Guest Icon Guest
    Christine, Guest @ 9:02 am

    I live in Chapel Hill too as a UNC alum, and ran into a similar problem with our wedding date (10/9/10) falling on a home game versus Clemson. I had a similar reaction the day the football schedule was released! Unfortunately even calling hotels the same day as the schedule came out we weren’t able to get blocks at our choice Chapel Hill hotels, and ended up staying at the Washington Duke in Durham (which was fabulous, btw). You guys are lucky it worked out for you!! Although we still had the Chapel Hill wedding we wanted to, it would have been nice to stay downtown too! :) Congratulations and good luck with the planning!

  12. Member
    Leprechaun 1012 posts, Bumble bee @ 3:37 pm

    I totally understand your freakout. We got married at our alma matre (Notre Dame), and when we booked we didn’t know the date of the spring football scrimmage yet. It’s a big deal at our school, with tens of thousands attending. Until the day when they announced the date (the weekend after our wedding!) I was on pins and needles, and ready to call all of our vendors and change it.

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