Spend the day with the best in bridal at the annual Plattsburgh Bridal and Fashion Expo

"That's one of the main reasons we [have the expo]," said Heroux. "I mean the cost of a wish is going up a lot. So, if we can help with that, that's what we love."

The expo's fashion show also connects with Make-A-Wish in that some of the models are wishers themselves.

"I think we have six this year," said Heroux. "We have ones that will keep coming back and we have some new ones. Any Make-A-Wish child we open it up to."

One such model who has been a part of the show for the last three years recently asked permission from the Laura's Bridal staff to wear a wedding dress this year.

"She's been fighting [cancer] for many years, and she's back again."

The expo not only helps out the soon-to-be married and Make-A-Wish, but the vendors as well.

Five years ago, Sassy Images salon approached Laura's Bridal, asking if they could volunteer to prepare up-dos for the women in the fashion show.

"Basically, I went in and just said, 'We're trying to specialize in weddings,'" explained owner Kelli Calongne. "I asked Lonnie if I could do it, and he said it's never gone smoother."

Calongne said the expo is one of the best things she has ever done, and has found a 100 percent increase in business by participating each year.

"I just think the Bridal Expo is a great benefit to the Make-A-Wish Foundation and Lonnie puts a lot of hard work into it," added Calongne. "It is the best one that I've ever been to. And, as far as letting us do the hair and makeup, it's actually a huge part in why we're so successful."

Laura's Bridal anticipates another sold-out show this year, and asks tickets be purchased in advance. Tickets are available at Laura's Bridal and College Formals, 494 State Route 3, in the Adirondack Plaza.

"For businesspeople such as us and the other businesses, it gives us qualified time to go one-on-one to speak with the bride about our services, designs and so on," said Cross. "Kind of a neat opportunity for us."

"It tells a little bit about what we take pride in, which is our customer service," he added. "That's where we really focus and I believe the girls [of Laura's Bridal] are once again the success story there."

For further information, call Laura's Bridal and College Formals at 563-8897 or visit www.college-formals.com.

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