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Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

It's spring in Minnesota, and if you've got a lot of weddings on the books over the next six months, you're not alone.

The state of play: The 2021 wedding season will be the busiest in decades, according to The Knot, which found that 47% of couples who had planned to get married in 2020 are now getting married in 2021 or later.

  • That's even more pronounced in Minnesota, which condenses its wedding season into six months.
  • Wedding season heats up here on April 16, said Steve Hark, CEO of Entourage Events Group, which operates several wedding venues in the Twin Cities.

The big picture: There's a backlog of weddings as couples with 2020 dates pushed them into 2021 and couples that might have gotten married in 2021 are now locking in dates for 2022.

  • At Hark's venues, which include the Minneapolis Event Centers at St. Anthony Main and the Mansion at Uptown, every Saturday is booked, which is normal. Whats not normal is that nearly every Friday and Sunday between now and October are also taken.
  • Entourage has even booked nine or 10 Thursday weddings, which was unheard of pre-pandemic.
  • "By the end of April you won't find any more open Saturdays in 2022," Hark added.

What's changed, according to Hark: Guest lists and budgets have been slashed.

  • Budgets at Entourage used to average $20,000 to $25,000. Now they're down to $15,000.
  • Guests lists were previously 200 to 250. Now they're 100 to 150.
  • Weddings are being booked six weeks out, including some dates in May that were booked in March. "People are rushing back to celebrate," Hark said.

This story first appeared in the Axios Twin Cities newsletter, designed to help readers get smarter, faster on the most consequential news unfolding in their own backyard.

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Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

First fatality confirmed in downtown Austin mass shooting

Police barricades near the scene of a shooting in Austin, Texas, on Saturday. Photo: Sergio Flores/Getty Images

A 25-year-old man died Sunday of injuries sustained in a mass shooting that wounded 13 other people in downtown Austin, Texas, the previous day, police confirmed.

Driving the news: Austin police named the victim as Douglas John Kantor, as they continued to search for one of two suspects. One suspect was taken into custody on Saturday following the shooting on 6th Street, a popular area with bars and restaurants.

Pelosi demands Barr and Sessions testify on data subpoenas

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told CNN Sunday that former Attorneys General William Barr and Jeff Sessions should testify before Congress on reports that the Trump-era Department of Justice seized Democrats' and journalists' data records.

Driving the news: DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz announced Friday an internal investigation into the matter, and Pelosi expressed disbelief to CNN's Dana Bash at assertions that neither Barr nor Sessions knew of probes into lawmakers.

Updated 3 hours ago - World

Netanyahu is out as new Israeli government survives confidence vote

Photo: Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP via Getty Images

Israel has a new prime minister for the first time since 2009 after a power-sharing government led by Naftali Bennett survived a confidence vote on Sunday. Bennett was sworn in as prime minister.

Why it matters: Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel's longest-serving prime minister and the man around whom Israeli politics have revolved for a decade, will now become opposition leader. Bennett, a right-wing former Netanyahu protege, will lead the most ideologically diverse government in Israeli history.

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