Viewers of the national cable channel WE tv will see Lawrence featured Sunday — that’s if their eyes aren’t too misty.
Lawrence’s The Oread hotel will be part of the network’s popular program “My Fair Wedding,” which will follow the story of a teenage cancer survivor whose one wish to the Make-a-Wish Foundation was for his mother’s upcoming wedding to be perfect.
“It was very surreal,” said Rocky Nichols, who married Ryan Peskuski’s mother, Wendy, in April.
Ryan, who is a senior at Topeka’s Seaman High School, was diagnosed with cancer in 2009. Rocky and Wendy put their wedding plans on hold when they learned of the diagnosis. But by 2011, Ryan’s cancer was in remission, and the wedding was back on. And Ryan had been paying attention to his mother’s TV habits.
“My son knew how much I loved to watch ‘My Fair Wedding,’” Wendy Nichols said.
At first, it appeared not even the Make-a-Wish Foundation was going to be able to pull off the request. The television program was not planning on filming shows outside of the Los Angeles area.
But eventually show host David Tutera learned of the backstory behind the request and wanted to do the program. Tutera usually becomes involved in planning a “fairy tale” wedding for a couple about three weeks before an event. For this one, he had only about a week.
“It was a little nerve-wracking,” Rocky Nichols said. “But I’m incredibly proud of my son for this wish, and I’m also proud of how the Topeka and northeast Kansas community came together to help everybody pull this off.”
Show producers didn’t want to give away too much about the upcoming episode, so it is not entirely clear how Lawrence and The Oread play into the script. But Rocky Nichols — who already has seen the episode — said the hotel is featured in several scenes.
“It looks beautiful,” he said.
But the show-stealer ended up being Ryan, Rocky Nichols said.
“It has been great for Ryan,” Rocky said. “He is kind of a shy young man, and he’s really blossomed.”
The family travelled to Los Angeles for a red carpet premiere of the show, where Ryan was introduced to a crowd of more than 1,000 by the president of WE tv. Then the family went to Phoenix where Ryan was a featured speaker at the national Make-a-Wish Foundation conference.
“It was really great,” Rocky Nichols said. “The two founders of the program came up to him afterwards and said, ‘The beauty of your wish is what made us start this program.’”
“My Fair Wedding” airs at 8 p.m. Sunday on WE tv.