Happily ever after: Fishers woman plans to gift free wedding to couple in need


Fishers resident Christine Kingery wants to do something good, so she’s organizing Planning from the Heart, a search for a couple in need with plans to get married.

When a couple is found, Kingery and other vendors will unite to provide a free wedding.

“A couple of months ago, I was just wanting to do something really nice for a couple, and I came up with the idea for Planning from the Heart,” Kingery said. “I said to my husband that I just wanted to donate my services to a couple who deserves that special day. We kind of talked through it, and I said I want to make a package out of it.

“I don’t want a normal couple. I want a couple with some major issues going on with their lives, or someone with a lot of medical bills who can’t afford a nice wedding.”

A photo of a wedding setup Christine Kingery helped plan. (Photo by Siners Photography)

Kingery, a wedding planner who owns Christine Kingery Events, has been in the business for eight years. She plans approximately 20 weddings a year, frequently in Carmel, Zionsville, Bloomington and Terre Haute, although she works all across the state.

“I go all in,” she said.

Kingery often works in tandem with Tinker House Events as a wedding coordinator and will use that event space at 1101 E. 16th St., Indianapolis, as the donated venue.

So far, Kingery has a photographer, videographer, DJ, florist and the venue lined up board. She wants to help someone with a 2021 wedding. Applications are now open for couples, who can nominate themselves or someone else. The application deadline is July 31.

“I would love an Indiana couple,” Kingery said. “It’s been awesome so far.”

Kingery said wants to offer a free wedding to a couple in need every year.

“I love doing this, and I’ve never done charity work with my business and I wanted to get my business involved in charity work or donating something, and I just came up with that idea,” Kingery said. “I’m hoping if I do this annually, I’m hoping I can switch up the vendors, get some new vendors involved and different venues. I would just see how the first one goes and then get the word out.

“I don’t want that normal couple. I want a good, heart-wrenching story.” 

A couple will be announced the first or second week of August. Kingery plans to narrow applications to 10 selections and then sit down with all the vendors and interview the top choices.

For couples interested in applying, visit christinekingeryevents.com and select the Planning from the Heart tab.

Kingery is married to Charlie, a Lawrence Police Dept. officer. They have two children, Landon, 6, and Audra, 3.

Mandell Butler twirls his bride, Kayla Butler. (Photo by Kristen Mittlestedt Photography)

Participating vendors

  • Christine Kingery Events: 12 months of wedding planning and day-of coordinating
  • Christine Kingery Events: $500 toward a wedding dress
  • Tinker House Events: 12-hour venue rental
  • Engagement and wedding-day photographs: Heather Sherrill Photography
  • Invitation suite and wedding-day stationary: Pickle Prints Custom Paper Creations
  • Wedding party, ceremony and reception flowers: P&D Flower Farm
  • Ceremony and reception music: DJ SideWays
  • Eight-hour video coverage: Morning Light Film Co.

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