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Wedding bells will ring Sunday


Hardly anyone gets married in a convention center, but come 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 26, that’s exactly where Matt Avilucea and Tanell DeGroat will tie the knot, in front of about 60 invited guests – and as many others who want to attend.

Avilucea and DeGroat are the winners of the 2020 Tie the Knot wedding competition, sponsored by Magic 104.9 FM and the Las Cruces Bridal & Special Events Showcase. The showcase event is presented by Las Cruces Event Planning, the Las Cruces Convention Center and The Las Cruces Bulletin

Out of more than 200 entrants, their names were drawn just 10 days prior to the ceremony. DeGroat will be outfitted with a gown and makeup, as well as professional styling services on-site prior to the ceremony, and Avilucea will get togged up in a suit or tuxedo of his choosing.

Having known one another since high school, the happy couple didn’t begin dating until years later, and it didn’t take long to decide they wanted to blend their families. He proposed on New Years Day, and she entered the contest on a whim.

“It couldn’t be more meant-to-be,” she said.  

The wedding is part of the overall showcase, which runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Las Cruces Convention Center, 680 E. University Ave. The showcase will feature approximately 50 different vendors presenting opportunities, goods and services regarding all aspects of weddings and special events.


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