Planning a Plantation Wedding

February 29, 2016 - Plantation Wedding & Hollywood Diversity 02/29/2016 Views: 856

Robin Thede and Mike Yard go undercover in Kentucky to investigate the growing phenomenon of plantation weddings. (5:05)

Welcome back.

With springright around the corner,

wedding seasonwill soon be upon us.

Now, with this in mind,I decided

to send our own Mike Yardand Robin Thede down South

to look at a curiouslypopular style of wedding.

Take a look.

YARD: You know what I love? Weddings.

Do you know what I don't love? Slavery.

When I read that it's now trendy

for white people to have lavish plantation weddings

on estates where black people used to be enslaved,

that (bleep) didn't sit right with me.

So to figure out if this is actually as racist

as it sounds, Robin Thede and I traveled

to the Richwood Plantation in Kentucky

to sit down with owner Colleen Sutton

under the guise of planning our own wedding.

-Great place.-It's so beautiful here.

Thank you very much.

Is it okay that I'm inside?

-Absolutely.-Okay.

As we understand,this place has some...

-very interesting history also.-It does.

Samuel Fern is the ownerthat is really,

um, creditedto building this property.

-He had slaves, right?-He did.

There were three slavesthat were recorded.

But it was recorded earlier

-that he did actually havefour slaves, -Four slaves.

-and, um...-What happened to the other one?

He... did... f...

es-escape, I guess.

-He actually...he actually ran away. -Yay...!

Colleen gave us a tour of the land,

and surprisingly, I didn't feel the urge to run away.

So, you want to know whatone of the most ironic things

about wherewe're standing right now?

-That we're not working?-(Sutton laughs)

Is look how close we areto the river.

Kentucky was a slave state.

That's Indiana--and that was a free state.

Wait a minute, wait a minute,wait a minute, wait a minute.

-You had a slave livingright here... -Yes, sir.

-staring at freedom every day.-Yes. Absolutely.

-Wow. -That's how committedblack people are

to not swimming, is thatwe would rather stay slaves

-than swim 50 yards to freedom.-That is... Well, you know.

But that's not to say I didn't see anything suspicious

on the property.

Hey, Colleen, what's that?

YARD: It looks like a placeto hang black people.

Uh, no. Actually, I thinkit was more of a pulley system,

where they were ableto bring heavy objects

from down low up tothe third floor of the mansion.

-Oh, like black people?-Oh, I love that.

No, not like black people.

How authenticcan these weddings get?

Right? So if we want to havea plantation wedding,

I mean,how authentic can they get?

Do we dress in costume?Like, what can go on?

You can really doanything that you want.

You can be as elaborateand do something

like a traditionalplantation wedding...

Traditional...

1790... traditional?

-Absolutely.-Because we're gonna dress up

our little cousins, like,you know, little slaves,

-little... little (bleep)running around. -Yeah.

-You know what I mean?-Aw...

And we might beat 'em.

-With, like, Nerf whips.-Everybody take turns.

-Not real whips.-Yeah, not real whips.

Yeah, that doesn't...that doesn't feel good to me.

If we have our wedding here,

and let's say she gets pregnantwedding night--

-'cause it's gonna be on---Yeah.

-um, do you keep the baby,or...? -(laughing)

What do we do?

-No. -Is it ours?Can we leave with it?

Absolutely. Yes.

I'm... I am the ownerof the property,

-I am not the owner of you.-Of us. Yeah.

Oh. Well,that should be on the sign.

Our approach might have been too traditional for Colleen,

so we sat down with a black person

to see how they would feel.

Cuita, you actually cateredweddings at this plantation.

-Yes.-How do you feel about that,

having a weddingon a plantation?

I actually don't seean issue with it.

So if you had a contractthat said that...

we wantan all-African American staff

and we want to call you allthe N-word...

-But you get paid.-in the spirit...

-but you get paid...-$10,000 for the day.

Right. And it's just in thespirit of the antebellum world.

-No.-THEDE: No.

-No money's gonna allow...-$20,000 a day. $20,000.

-I don't think I could puta price... -$35,000.

-I wouldn't put a price on it.-$50,000.

-No. -A million dollars.-A hundred thousand dollars.

-A million dollars.-That's a lot of money.

They could probably call me(bleep) for... a million!

(laughs)

Now, a lot of people thinkit's bad to get married

at a plantation,given its history.

Do you think that's valid?

I think there is validity there,

but I think that if we were tolook at our nation as a whole,

there are so many placesthat evil has happened

that we wouldn't have anywhereto do incredible events.

But just because bad (bleep) happens everywhere,

doesn't mean we should just forget about it.

I'm all for having weddings at plantations

as long as we Keep It 100 about its past.

Let me do something that Iwould have never been able to do

back in the day,and that's speak my mind.

Richwood Plantationis beautiful.

And here,white people serve you.

-Yes! -Whoever thoughtwe'd live to see this day?

(laughs): Who'd have thoughtwe'd live to see any day?

We're on a (bleep) plantation!(laughs)

But I got to admit,I love white people serving me.

(cheering, applause)

YARD:I'm not eating that (bleep).

Mike Yard and Robin Thede,everybody!

Free at last!We'll be right back!

-♪ -(cheering, applause)