Black-eyed Pea closure causes problems for couple's wedding

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Couple says bankrupt restaurant won't refund wedding catering

Jason Collier is a frustrated groom.

"I paid all this money for a beautiful wedding, and to give my fiance a dream wedding," said the real estate professional. But, he added: "We don't have food!"

When Collier made a surprise proposal to his fiance Ashley Landry at the school where she is a teacher, he promised her the perfect wedding.

The young couple picked the Humble Civic Center as the wedding location with October 8, as the wedding date. They signed a contract with Black-eyed Pea to be the caterer.

Everything was going well, until Tuesday, when the restaurant's catering manager called. "They never said anything, never said the company filed bankruptcy a year ago," said Landry. She can't believe no one on the restaurant staff ever told her the company was having financial problems. "(Nobody said) it could be a possibility, that we may not be able to cater your wedding, and they called me yesterday and said they can't."

On Monday, all but one of the Black-eyed Pea Texas restaurants shut down, abruptly. No warning.

Just a note on the door. Landry and collier already paid the full $2,700 catering bill. They were told there would be no refund -- and no catering.

"We got to figure something out," said Landry. "It was supposed to be a dream wedding."

"And we both sacrificed a lot," said Collier, adding they worked extra hours and saved to pay for the wedding.

Our calls to the corporate headquarters went to voice mail. Landry and Collier say they don't know what to do. Their first preference would be for the contract to be honored, since their wedding is 10 days away. In the meantime, they are working to find a caterer who would charge them a reasonable price and still be available on short notice.

But they take comfort in knowing one thing, with or without a caterer. "The ultimate thing is about us, sharing that moment, confessing our love to each other and wanting to spend our lives together," said Collier.

He and Landry vow not to let the catering snafu stop their big day.
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