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bride’s guide

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BRIDE’S GUIDE

Summer/Fall 2014

June 18 & 19, 2014

Wednesday, June 18 & Thursday, June 19, 2014


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BRIDE’S GUIDE

Wednesday, June 18 & Thursday, June 19, 2014

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BRIDE’S GUIDE

A special project of the Le Center Leader, Le Sueur News-Herald, and St. Peter Herald. Publisher: Stephanie Hill Managing Editor: Suzy Rook Media Consultants: Kathleen Davies, Kacie Karels, Stephanie Hill Ad Design: Nikkie Gilmore, Mary Jo Blanchard Cover Design: Nikkie Gilmore Page Design: Nikkie Gilmore Bride’s Guide is distributed to subscribers and readers of the Le Center Leader, Le Sueur NewsHerald, and St. Peter Herald at no additional charge. All rights reserved. ©2014. All advertising contained herein is the responsibility of the advertiser. No portion of the advertising or editorial may be reproduced without permission of the publisher.

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table of contents bride’s guide Summer/Fall 2014

• Budget: Make the Most of Your Money • Rings: Tokens of Love and Affection • Fashion: How to Find Your Dream Dress • Catering: Fuel the Party • Cake: Demystifying the Dessert • Marriage and Money • Venue: Time and Place Makes Perfect

June 18 & 19, 2014

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BRIDE’S GUIDE

Wednesday, June 18 & Thursday, June 19, 2014

budget: make the most of your money Establishing a budget early on, and sticking to it, will help couples start marriage on the right fianancial foot What does it cost to get married these days? Well, it depends on whom you ask. The Wedding Report, the Tucson, Ariz.-based wedding market researcher, says the average spend in 2013 was $25,200. According to TheKnot.com & WeddingChannel.com Real Weddings Study, $28,427 was the average spend in 2012, the most recent year figures are available. The question, again: What does it cost to get married? The answer: Does it really matter?! It can be, and often is, a hefty sum. But those aren’t numbers to work toward, they’re numbers to work away from!

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Today’s couples are more mindful of what they put into their celebrations, using savings and on-hand cash — not going into debt to pay for their events. They’re cautious on how they deploy their dollars. In short, they want ot be sure that they and their guests get the most out of what they spend.

When you’ve come up with your number, plug it in a budget formula to see how much you have to spend in each area of your wedding. Follow these estimates to get started. Remember, the figures are just estimates, so adjust as necessary to fit your wedding’s needs: • Reception – 50% • Music – 10% To establish your magic • Flowers – 10% number, look at your designat• Wedding Attire – 10% ed savings, contributions from • Photo/Video – 10% parents or other relatives, and • Stationery – 5% what of your regular income • Miscellaneous – 5% you can devote toward the wedding, without sabotaging © Brides 365 your day-to-day budget.

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BRIDE’S GUIDE

Wednesday, June 18 & Thursday, June 19, 2014

the rings: tokens of love and affection If there’s one thing that symbolizes the wedding, it’s the ring. After all, it’s the first thing a bride-to-be shows off after the engagement (60 percent announce the news by posting a photo of the ring to Facebook, according to a joint survey from The Knot and Men’s Health magazine). But at the end of the wedding day — and every day after — your wedding band will have equal billing alongside your engagement ring, even if it may be a little less sparkly. You’ll want to make sure it is cohesive with your engagement ring and, of course, that it fits your style. Start with the metal. White gold was the most popular choice for both engagement and wedding rings in 2013, according to The Wedding Report’s Engagement and Wedding Ring survey, roughly accounting for two-thirds

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of each. Whether your ring is white or yellow gold or platinum or something else altogether, you’d be in good company sticking with the same base metal for your wedding band. Also keep in mind design elements. The Wedding Report study found that 94 percent engagement of engagement rings use a diamonds, and 82 percent of wedding rings also have some diamond element. Maybe your engagement ring is a full or partial eternity band, or maybe it features pavé diamonds or accent gemstones. You can carry on these elements into your wedding band. White gold also is popular for the groom, with more than 34 percent of grooms opting for the go-to metal popular with brides. Surprisingly, it’s not platinum (14 percent) or yellow gold (11.6) that is the

next popular among grooms but rather tungsten, which makes up more than 18 percent of grooms’ bands. Alternative metals like tungsten and titanium (11 percent) have grown in popularity in recent years, not just because of their unique darker look, but their lower price point. The average spend in 2013 was $702 for the bride’s wedding ring and $488 for the groom’s. © Brides 365


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Wednesday, June 18 & Thursday, June 19, 2014

out of many, one: how to find your dream dress

Whether or not you’ve romanticized the idea of twirling around in a cloud of white tulle, the search for The One — the wedding gown, that is! — is one of the most emotional and fun purchases you will make as a bride-tobe. But don’t say yes to the dress before taking care of a few details first. Launch the dress search only after finalizing the wedding venue and date, advises event planner Ariana Stecker of Save the Date, a New York-based firm. After all, what originally was planned as a daytime summer celebration quickly can morph into a winter black tie affair, which calls for an entirely different look. As for starting the shopping process, “six months [prior to the wedding] is really go-time,” Stecker says, to give room for any custom work and two to three fittings. With inspiration coming everywhere from the runway

to the red carpet, it’s easy to get lost in a sea of Pinterest boards and wedding blogs, but for sanity’s sake try to keep the search contained. Think classic over trendy, and consider your wedding style, whether it’s formal, casual, rustic, traditional, vintage or outdoor. Check out websites to view galleries of gowns organized by silhouette, neckline, fabric or designer, says wedding editor Anne Chertoff. Also, pay attention to any patterns in the silhouettes or embellishments that catch your eye. It’s tempting to point and click your way to a $10,000 gown, but if you’re working with a firm budget ($1,211 is the average spent on a wedding dress according to TheKnot.com & WeddingChannel.com 2012 Real Weddings Survey), figure out your price limit before you shop — and decide whether that budget is just for the dress, or if it includes extras like undergar-

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ments and accessories. “If you find yourself attracted to a certain designer’s styles, make sure their gowns are within your budget range before proceeding,” says Jessica Bishop, editor of the wedding blog The Budget Savvy Bride. And select bridal boutiques accordingly: “If you know you can spend $1,000 to $2,000 on a wedding dress, don’t go to a store that sells more pricey gowns,” Chertoff says. Not sure what you can spend? It’s helpful to talk about budget openly with a bridal salon— they’ll help you understand how details you’re envisioning like embellishments, beading and lace affect the cost, which

may impact your bottom line, notes Stacey Rywelski, general manager of the David’s Bridal flagship store in Manhattan. “It’s important to educate a bride.” Most brides typically shop at one to three stores, so choose wisely — to maximize time, arrive armed with the details of your wedding date, venue, overall style and budget. A good consultant will take into account everything from a bride’s outfit and accessories (is she sassy or sophisticated?) to her personality and reception details (does she plan to dance all night or indulge in delicious desserts?) to help find the perfect fit, Weddings Honeymoons Leisure Packages

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ettes, necklines and fabrics,” Chertoff says. “You may think you want a ball gown, but once you put one on you may not like the fit.” Adds Stecker: “Be willing to try on one dress that’s out of the box. Pay no mind to what it looks like on the hanger,” she says. But don’t feel pressured to make the final decision until you’ve found the perfect match. “Remember you don’t have to buy the first time,“ Stecker reminds. “You can go back.”

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says Rywelski. “You want to take someone’s style and enhance it,” she adds. “Their personality should come out in a dress.” Armed with the basics of what you do (and don’t) like, a bridal salon’s stylist will be your most helpful guide. The key to being a frock star is keeping an open mind, the experts say. It’s easy to get stuck on the idea of a sweetheart neckline or a low back, but “sometimes that look just doesn’t work on their body type,” notes Rywelski, who calls the process a “collaborative effort” between bride and consultant. “Try on a variety of silhou-

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BRIDE’S GUIDE

Wednesday, June 18 & Thursday, June 19, 2014

catering: fueling the party How to pick the right food and drinks to fit your wedding’s style By Anna Sachse Brides 365

guests are aware there won’t able option is heavy hors be a full meal.” d’oeuvres, either passed or If the budget is limited served buffet-style. With the ceremony combut food is a priority for you, The caterer can help you plete, all eyes turn to the wed- consider opting for a Sunday determine the style that ding meal — both to please soirée, an off-season wedding works best for your budget their palates and power them date or an afternoon affair, and will often adjust a menu through a night of dancing. when you can usually get to meet your needs, such as A great party is as simple as more for your buck. forgoing coffee service in finding the right food to match exchange for an additional an event’s style. Pricing the Plates appetizer or two. Catering costs can vary Service Selections widely, from as low as $20 per Drink Up! Food service options person at a banquet hall up to The key elements of a include plated and family-style $200 per person at a luxury wedding bar include wine, dinners, buffets, stations and hotel, Schemper says. The city, beer, bubbly, cocktails – plus heavy hors d’oeuvres. Each the venue and the menu all soda, “mocktails” and other one helps set the tone of an play a part. Big towns are of- nonalcoholic drinks. Determine event, says Bridget Pelster, a ten more expensive; standard which you want based on sales and catering manager venues may have minimums; budget and your guests. for St. Louis-based Butler’s nontraditional locations may Fancy, formal affairs may Pantry. Seated dinners are typ- require additional rentals; and offer premium versions of all ically more formal and elegant, no matter where the event beverages all night long. But family-style meals are more takes place, the quantity, couples with limited funds intimate, buffets are more variety and style of cuisine will might prefer to serve only relaxed, stations are more drastically affect price. carefully selected wines and interactive and hors d’oeuvres In general, the most beer and perhaps a signature allow a lot of flexibility. expensive options are multi- cocktail, says Chris Tanghe, First, determine the style course plated dinners and a master sommelier and coof service you want based on stations, Pelster says. The next owner of Elevage, a Seattle the vibe you’d like to create, level down is typically limited- beverage consultancy. You also and then start playing around course plated dinners and can limit the full open bar to with menu ideas based on family-style meals, followed by just the cocktail hour, but be your budget and the timing buffets. And the most afford- aware: many members of the of the event. “If you’re having an evening wedding and you think the reception will last more than three hours, you should plan on serving someWe rent Savvi formalwear. thing fairly significant,” says Check out our prices – Molly Schemper, co-owner of you can’t beat them! Chicago-based FIG Catering. “At the minimum you want Le Center Floral heavy hors d’oeuvres with a Your full-service florist and gift shop couple protein options, and Jenniffer Smisek, Owner/Designer 44 E. Minnesota St. | Le Center, MN lecenterfloral@frontiernet.net it’s a good idea to make sure

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bridal world, from editors to etiquette experts, say a cash bar is the ultimate no-no. Also consider your guest list. If you’ve invited a gaggle of gourmands, you may want to emphasize fine wine. A ton of college friends? Perhaps (a lot of) cheap beer is fine. “Or maybe spirits are a must because the older generation only drinks gin martinis,” Tanghe says. Drinks & Dollars Plan for one drink per person per hour of the reception. If serving a special sparkling wine for the toast – perhaps a budget-friendly Spanish Cava or Italian prosecco – allot one additional glass per adult. Traditional venues usually have set prices, but you may

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BRIDE’S GUIDE

cake: demystifying the dessert By Maggie Flynn BRIDES 365 Wedding cakes have come a long way from the pearly tones and delicate petals of old. Brides-to-be have more options than ever, whether they desire a traditional tiered cake or a table-length dessert spread. But the one thing all the experts agree on is the bride should know what she’s looking for. “I think the biggest obstacle is when they come in and they have no clue what they want,” says Ilene Frazier McHone, founder of Classic Cakes in Carmel, Ind. She says that bringing in pictures from magazines and sharing Pinterest boards is a huge help to the designer. Couples should start looking into bakers about four to six months out of the wedding date. The best thing to have when a couple goes for a tasting — besides an empty stomach! — is their budget. According to TheKnot.com & WeddingChannel.com annual Real Wedding Study, the average spent on a cake in 2012 was $560, but certain design

work or flavor and filling options can quickly change a sugar high into sticker shock. Though, “there are ways of putting accents on the cake without it being the whole, and that will cut down the cost,” says Yvette Humbert, of Amazing Cakes of Austin in Leander, Texas. “A lot of times, it looks a lot better and more elegant just to have some accents.” Sharokina Pazand, founder and senior consultant of Citygirl Weddings in Chicago, suggests a “fun” flavor for a small tier of the wedding cake and keeping the rest of the cake to more traditional tastes. For brides on a budget, McHone suggests a smaller traditionally decorated cake accompanied by what she calls “side cakes,” which are simpler cakes that are an affordable way to provide a slice for each guest. A modern dessert trend — in addition to or in lieu of a cake — is a dessert table with a spread of sweet treats like cupcakes, cake pops, brownies or whoopee pies, to name a few. Megan Remo, of District Desserts in Washington, D.C., says to have anywhere from

three to five items per guest, since people tend to try some of everything. Many smaller desserts can add up quickly, so Remo suggests filling table jars and vases with store-bought candies and cookies, to supplement. Constructed properly, a dessert table gives more options to the guests and allows for creativity. Pazand reminds, however, to check with your venue on how long dessert tables can stay out before staff will clear them, as they’re separate from typical cake service. Pazand has seen cotton candy and gelato bars and Remo has seen desserts themed entirely around golf. But, really, “it comes down to what the bride wants,” Humbert says. Pazand agrees. “I always tell clients that any kind of food option they choose is a reflection of them and their wedding,” she says. “If you were hosting somebody at your house, what would you offer?” © Brides 365

Wednesday, June 18 & Thursday, June 19, 2014


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BRIDE’S GUIDE

marriage and money

Congratulations! You've found the one you want to spend the rest of your life with, and you're getting married. There is no question an abundant supply of resources is available to help you plan every aspect of your special day—from the invitations all the way to the honeymoon— many with handy checklists and timelines. I’m sure there is an app to help keep you focused, on task and on budget, with periodic reminders and a countdown to the big day. One area that couples often overlook in the planning process is the financial aspect of their union. I know, finances aren’t as exciting and thrilling as planning the bachelor/ bachelorette party, or planning that once in a lifetime trip to an exotic romantic location. However, finances are consistently sited as one of the leading strains on the marital relationship. Understanding the details of each other’s financial lives and how they will mesh together before the “I dos” have been exchanged may reduce stress, prevent complications later in the marriage, maybe even extend the honeymoon phase! Here are some guidelines you can use to help navigate the financial aspects of getting married.

responsible for paying the jointly incurred expenses such as rent, mortgage payments, utilities, etc.? How will the other individual reimburse their share? • Joint accounts can add a level of simplicity to the finances—fewer accounts to track and balance monthly; one account for paying expenses. Tangible Property Tangible property (homes, cars, recreational vehicles, etc.) owned individually prior to the marriage can remain titled to the individual, or it can be changed to joint ownership. This decision is largely dependent on the value each party brings to the union and the type of assets. For example, an asset that has been passed down through generations of a family and is intended to stay within that family, or an ownership interest in a family business, may not be have ownership restrictions making joint ownership with a spouse not possible. It is also important even in a Separate Property state (as opposed to Community Property states) such as Minnesota, to understand how the use of assets and earnings from an asset during your marriage may be viewed as a joint marital asset despite being titled individually.

Wednesday, June 18 & Thursday, June 19, 2014

save your financial future. Prenuptials are generally useful when one or both parties have substantial premarital assets, an expected inheritance, family wealth or a business.

Debts Premarital debts generally remain the responsibility of the individual borrower even after marriage. While you may not be financially responsible for your spouse’s debt, poor credit or heavy debt load will definitely have an impact on future decisions such as purchasing a new home or having children.

Taxes

Marital status is determined at the end of the calendar year. If you were married as of December 31, you are considered married for the entire year. When completing your tax return, your filing status will be Married Filing Jointly (MFJ) or Married Filing Separately (MFS). MFJ filing status calculates tax based on the net of the combined income and deductions of both parties whereas the MFS filing status calculates tax based on the net of the income and deductions of each party separately. In most circumAssets stances, the MFJ status Cash results in a lower overall tax. Decide if bank accounts Your accountant will be able to will be retained as separately Prenuptial agreements are run an analysis to determine owned accounts or if they will not at the top of the list of ro- which filing status is more be combined to form a joint mantic things to do before you advantageous. account. get married, but they could • Separate accounts require some additional decisions be made–who will be

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Other tax changes after the marriage certificate is inked: • Standard deduction doubles – For 2014, the standard deduction for a single taxpayer is $6,200 and married filing joint taxpayers is $12,400 • Tax Brackets double – For 2014, the 25% tax bracket for a single taxpayer is $36,900 - $89,350; for married filing joint taxpayers, the 25% tax bracket is $73,800 - $148,850 • Home Sale exclusion doubles from $250,000 for a single taxpayer to $500,000 for married taxpayers. Similar to the process you go through when merging your living space (i.e., whose couch reigns supreme) meshing your financial lives can be challenging. Be prepared, and leverage the expertise of an accountant to help navigate the union of your monies. Being prepared and clear on your financial situations will help ensure you’re starting your future on solid ground. Heather Thielges, CPA, CVA is a Partner at Eide Bailly LLP specializing in business and individual tax consulting and compliance, business valuations, and litigation support.


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BRIDE’S GUIDE

Wednesday, June 18 & Thursday, June 19, 2014

venue: time and place makes perfect Here comes you, the bride, down the aisle. But where? Your hometown church? A museum or raw loft space, perhaps? A botanic garden? The family farm? Couples getting married today have more options than ever for deciding where to get married. Church or synagogue weddings followed by hotel ballroom receptions remain the classic go-to, but the morphing wedding landscape is opening the door to more alternative venues – many of which double as both ceremony and reception location. According to a Ceremony and Reception survey from The Wedding Report, the number of same-location indoor weddings increased nearly 20 percent from 2011 to 2012, with more than 45 percent taking place in an all-in-one spot. Is this to say you must have your ceremony and reception in one spot? No, of course not. But your

venue – or venues – help set the tone for your wedding day, complementing your theme in everything from the décor to cuisine.

tions. If you’re getting married in one location, say a house of worship, and having your reception in another, get a list of all available dates for both Get Started – Early! spots and see which dates Why? Well, popular venues align. can get booked well in advance. And though you may Style & Simplicity be engaged for a while – most Throughout all the venuesurveys agree the average picking, keep your wedding’s engagement period is 14 theme and style in mind. You months – the sooner you start obviously don’t want a large, checking out venues, the bet- open space if you’re having an ter chance you have of landing intimate wedding with only a the one you want. If you have few guests, and vice versa. your heart set on a specific If you’re going to have a location, let that dictate your lot of out-of-town guests who date. If you’re more open aren’t familiar with your area, on your venues, keep time it may be wise to go with a in mind when deciding on a hotel location or a venue with date; busy periods at work, one nearby, so that the overall high-traffic events in your area logistics of the weekend and nearby holidays are just a remain simple. few things to consider when Obviously, budget is a big deciding if a date is doable, thing when picking out your especially if you have a large venue; overall, anticipate your number of traveling guests reception (the space, dinner, that will require accommoda- drinks) to eat up half your

budget. Many venues will have a “wedding package,” which includes obvious things like food and drinks but also some other items that may be less obvious. To get a handle on costs, keep these points in mind:

can make a difference on your selections do you get? How total bill. much is a package upgrade or additional hours of service? Food Is there wine service during Your per-entrée price is dinner (when the bar typically going to cover pretty much is closed)? Is it unlimited or is everything that’s included in there a limited per-table quanyour package. So, yes, you tity? Is there a champagne don’t want to pay more for the toast and after-dinner coffee Cost same entrée you could get at service? Are you able to bring Most places will require a different location, but you in your own alcohol? that you spend a certain need to look a bit further. Are amount of money. Obviously, you paying a per-item price or Cake & Flowers you’d like to be committed to at the rate of the highest menu Some venues may partner the lowest possible tab, esitem? Are appetizers included with local vendors to include pecially if your guest list isn’t in your per-plate price or are your cake and centerpieces as large. Gratuity and/or service they a separate, per-guest part of your package, or they charges often are built in. If expense? Is there a dessert may have an in-house expert you’re spending thousands course in addition to cake? on staff. You pick out or design of dollars, a 1- to 2-percent your creation, and they make difference between venues Drinks sure it’s set to go for your big will make a big difference. And How many hours of open day. Does your venue do this? if you’re looking at spots in bar are included in your packdifferent townships, again, the age? How many bartenders © Brides 365 slight difference in local tax will you have? How many beer

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#10718

LAST OF THE NEW 2013’S!

2014 RAM 2500 CREW CAB SLT 4X4 6.4 Hemi, Tow Pkg., Heated Seats, 5th Wheel Prep, Back-up Camera

EVENT PRICE

#10710

23,991*

$

2014 JEEP GRAND CHEROKEE LAREDO 4x4

$

EVENT PRICE

P. Doors & Liftgate, P. Seat, Back-up Camera, Blacktop Appearance Pkg.

EVENT PRICE

MSRP 49,715

$

2014 DODGE GRAND CARAVAN SXT MSRP 29,670

$

2014 RAM 1500 CREW CAB SLT 4x4 5.7 Hemi, Tow Pkg, Heated Seats & Steering Wheel, Remote Start, Back-up Camera, 20” Wheels

#10574

$

EVENT PRICE

MSRP 45,600

$

Leather, Heated Front & Middle Seats, DVD, NAV, Back-up Camera

$

EVENT PRICE

29,998*

$

2014 TOWN AND COUNTRY TOURING-L

MSRP 34,585

$

EVENT PRICE

#10541

EVENT PRICE

MSRP 29,575

$

17,992*

$

EVENT PRICE

$

EVENT PRICE

#10550

MSRP 36,540

$

MSRP 36,710

$

EVENT PRICE

$

#10615

MSRP 25,990

$

3.6 V6, Heated Leather, Remote Start, Back-up Camera

EVENT PRICE

2014 DODGE JOURNEY SXT

2014 DODGE CHARGER SXT AWD 3.6 V6, Remote Start, 8.4” Touch Screen with Back-up Camera, NAV

4 Cyl., Auto, 6.5” Touch Screen Controls, S-Appearance Group $

EVENT PRICE

#10606

2014 CHRYSLER 300 AWD

MSRP 25,480

$

EVENT PRICE

2014 CHRYSLER 200 TOURING

2014 DODGE AVENGER SE

DODGE CHARGER SUPERBEE.. $37,996* DODGE DURANGO CREW AWD. $39,941* DODGE DART SXT.................. $16,987* JEEP WRANGLER SAHARA...... $33,962*

*Includes finance cash. Must finance with Lagers Finance Source to qualify. WAC. See salesperson for details. **Also includes current truck owner incentive. See salesperson for details.

Lager’s

St. Peter

Jeep

910 Old Minnesota Ave.

507-931-4070 • 800-657-4802 HOURS: M-Th 8-7 | Fri 8-6 | Sat 8-4

Mike Chmiel

Dan Wegscheid

Jeff Brand

Jared Skala

Jake Peymann

®

Bride's Guide 2014  
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