Best Wedding Proposal Contest Stories (Part 1)

I live here in Nashville with my husband. But far before we had ever met, I attended college at the quaint and historic College of William and Mary in Virginia. The college was full of tradition and lore. Just outside my junior and senior year dorm room was a small pond with an old bridge over it. Rumor had it that when a man and woman crossed the bridge together, they were destined to be married. To walk over it alone was to tempt spinsterhood. Needless to say, it was a rare event to see college students on the bridge. But even still, it’s a beautiful sight and I had always loved it. My mother gave me a painting of it and when I met my husband, he necessarily learned the story. Fast forward hundreds of miles and nearly a decade from graduation, my boyfriend (now husband) took me to my alma mater in Virginia for a vacation and to see college friends. One night on campus, it was pouring down rain. But even still, we set out to tour the campus. My husband expertly steered me to all the various points of interest – almost as if he’d studied a map… Last on the list was the beautiful bridge from my memory (and the painting he’d seen for the 9 months we’d been dating). He took me to the bridge and kneeled at the foot of it. He proposed with the ring he’d been carrying all over Virginia! And then, of course, we walked across the bridge together. Now the painting of the bridge on my college campus has many meanings and levels of importance and hangs happily in our house! – Shelby Pannell Longard

My fiancé is known to be funny and spontaneous. I had an idea that he was going to propose but knew that he wanted to ask my dads permission. I knew that the last time we would see my dad face to face would be the first weekend in May of 2008. Little did I know that while we were there, he ask for permission not only to marry me but to also tease me a little bit in the process…The first time he came out on the deck where I was reading and said that he needed to talk to me. He started to tell me how much I meant to him and got down on one knee and said…”There is something I need to ask you….will you go see Iron Man with me?” As you can imagine I was a little upset by this because he had me going. After a couple weeks, he told me that he was taking me out to dinner on a Wednesday night, he said to get really dressed up and that he would pick me up after work. I was really excited and was convinced that he was going to be asking me. He picked me up, took me to Morton’s and had a private table reserved in the corner. I was nervous all night. When it came time for dessert he again started telling me how much he loved me, how he couldn’t live with out me and even reached down under the table as if to pick something up and then just told me he loved me. That was it! I left without a proposal and a little upset that he was stringing me along. The end of May came along and I had a weekend of seeing the Sex and the City movie and shopping with on of my best girlfriends. I got over to his house on Saturday night and he told me that we had reservations at Amerigo’s at 8. At this point I was beat so I went and took a nap, got up and got ready to go. We were running late because he didn’t get dressed until 7:45. We got to Amerigo’s, sat at the bar for a little while, then went to our table. We ate dinner and right before dessert came he asked me if I had to go to the bathroom. I said no and he told me that I should go. Because I wasn’t in an arguing I got up and went to call my sister who was at home sick with the flu. I got back to our table and he asked me if I was staying the night with him. I said yes and then he asked me if I would spend the night with him for the rest of his life. He lifted up my napkin and underneath it was my ring. Then he told me he loved me and asked me to marry him. It was perfect even after all the teasing…we are getting married on May 30th and will be spending our first night as a married couple at the Hermitage Hotel! – Shannon LeBlanc

I knew it was coming. We had talked about it before, but I didn’t know when. But it was obvious. The next day we were planning to pack a picnic, go to the “Blue Holes” on the Ocoee, (our favorite spot) and spend a romantic adventurous day together. We were getting ready for bed, both in our pajamas. I had carelessly thrown my hair up on top of my head and washed my face… I got in bed and flip on the TV. I looked over at him and he was grinning–ear to ear. He said, “I just can’t wait. Its been burning a hole in my pocket and I’m scared I’ll lose it if I wait till tomorrow. I love you, will you be my wife?” No make up and all…doesn’t’ get much more romantic than that! – Brandi Whitfield Bryant

We both had the EIT/FE exam on a Saturday in 2003 (for you non-engineers, that’s an 8 hour test us engineers have the pleasure of taking to try and get our professional license). Then we had tickets to Yanni, which I had bought for Brad for Christmas and reservations for dinner. Brad wouldn’t tell me where dinner was, but he does that all the time, so I wasn’t suspicious of that. After the test, we stopped at his brother’s to get changed and then headed into the city. Brad parked near where I used to work while he and I were both still attending Drexel for college. We walked by this garden that we used to meet at for lunch and he wanted to go in. When we walked in, in the center of the garden on top of a pillar, there was a glass slipper. (When we had first started talking about marriage, I told Brad all he needed to get me was a glass slipper, since I love Cinderella.) I believe my quote was “Oh my God, is that what I think it is?” He got down on one knee and presented a gorgeous ring and asked me, and I of course said yes. We even have pictures of the event…Brad had his friend come and put the glass slipper in the garden and then hide in the bushes to take pictures! He wasn’t able to work it out for the day, but originally, there was even a horse and carriage involved. – Joy Springer

My wife and I had been talking about getting engaged/married for some time, but when I decided to propose, I had secretly been hinting at time periods a little farther away. I was sure (and later confirmed) that she thought that I would be proposing at least a month or so down the road. We both love to cook, and after making and sharing a romantic dinner together, I sat her down at the table, got on one knee, and asked her to marry me. Earlier that day I had gotten one of her best friends to plan a small get together to celebrate, but timed it so that we could celebrate with a glass of champagne together, and then went out to celebrate with our friends!

13 months later, we had a lovely rehearsal dinner at the Hermitage, and then spent our wedding night there! – Trey Tally

I am a teacher (fourth grade), and the big day had finally arrived! I let all of my students in on the big secret, and I left 1/2 day early to prepare for the special night. My students were behind me 110% as I left to “set the stage” for a lovely evening. It was December 15, and I was outside in the freezing cold drizzle turning my backyard into a magical masterpiece. I have a path that winds between two flowerbeds. I wanted to line the path with white luminaries to mark the path. However, there was a chance of rain that night, so I had to buy white clear lights, cut holes in the bottoms of the white bags, and place those over the lights in order to make my own homemade luminaries that would work in case of rain! I had painted a sign that said, “But these three remain: FAITH, HOPE, AND LOVE. But the greatest of these is love.” I Corinthians 13:13. It was placed on the tree beside the path with a spotlight on it. At the end of that path, I had made a cross on the ground out of white Christmas lights to represent FAITH. I then spelled out HOPE with white lights as well. Finally, I made a huge heart out of luminaries to represent LOVE and to mark the “spot” where the proposal would happen.

After numb fingers, everything was ready to go! I had told my girlfriend that it would be fun to dress up and go out to dinner, so we went to Ruth Chris’s steak house. (My friend paid for our dinner as our engagement gift!) Afterwards, she thought we were just going to come back to my house and watch a movie. It was then that I texted my sister-in-law to “turn the lights on!” She officially had the backyard all lit up as soon as we got there. She and another friend were hiding behind trees so that they could capture the moment with photographs as soon as it happened.

Upon our arrival to the house, I told her that since we were not going to buy each other Christmas gifts this year, I made her one. I took her outside to the backyard. (She still had no clue) I made her read the sign beside the path, and then we proceeded to the three different stations, where I talked about what Faith, Hope, and Love meant to us as a couple. (She still had no clue) Once we both stepped into the middle of the heart, I got down on one knee and proposed. Her mouth hung wide open–she was shocked! She said “OF COURSE!” and hugged me. (She didn’t even take the ring she was so excited!) 🙂

I then asked her if she wanted to go show my parents the ring, and she of course wanted to do that. Little did she know that I had about thirty of our friends/family waiting for a surprise engagement party to end the special night. It was definitely a “night to remember” as we celebrated FAITH, HOPE, AND LOVE!

My fourth graders were pumped the next day as I shared stories and pictures with them about our special night. – Lance High

My husband Todd and I met at a Millsaps College alumni party at his house in Nashville, TN. We were both living in Nashville. Todd, my husband, is almost 10 years older than me, so we did not know each other at Millsaps in Jackson, MS.

I walked up to what is now “our house” and knew instantly that Todd was someone I wanted to get to know better. We dated for 10 months, and then for Valentine’s Day, he surprised me with a trip back to Jackson, MS to experience Millsaps together.

We finished the six-hour road trip and checked into our hotel, The Cabot Lodge Millsaps, right next to campus. The next day we set out to go explore our beloved college campus. We walked all around and we had fun sharing memories of different experiences at the same college. We got to an area of campus in front of the student center called “The Bowl”. There was an area in the middle where you could donate money to the school and you would receive an engraved brick with an inscription of your choice. My parents had bought a brick for me when I graduated so I immediately asked Todd to help me find “my brick” with the inscription Christina Paxton, class of 2000.

After I found my brick, Todd asked me to come over and look at a brick in front of him. I went over to him and read the brick out loud which said, “Crissy, Will You Marry Me? – Todd 4/8/2000”. I looked up and a guitar player was coming towards me playing our song, along with a cameraman getting the whole thing on video (Todd had found them on the internet and paid them to learn our song and to video the event!) I finally looked over at Todd after the reality of the situation set in and he was on one knee with tears in his eyes asking me to marry him. I immediately flew in his arms and said yes! Everyone in the bowl at that time started clapping and cheering.

After we celebrated, I looked up from the bowl and a stretch limo was waiting for us! We drove all over Jackson, sharing funny stories, taking pictures in front of our old houses, visiting old hangouts and drinking champagne. We even had the driver take us to our favorite burger joint, The Cherokee, where the driver joined us for burgers and fried pickles.

As the day came to a close, I noticed that the limo driver missed the exit to our hotel. I asked Todd where in the world we were going and he said innocently that he had no idea. We eventually pulled up to the nicest hotel in Jackson, MS. Todd had hired another person to pack up our things in our hotel room at the Cabot Lodge, and move them to this fancy hotel while we were out all day celebrating our engagement.

We ended the day by having a wonderful dinner at our favorite steakhouse in Jackson, Shapley’s, with two of Todd’s best college friends. It was the most romantic day of my life and I am excited to share this story. We were married December 30, 2006 and we just celebrated our second wedding anniversary. We would LOVE a night away at the wonderful Hermitage Hotel! – Crissy Cassetty

The fiancé’s family and I had plans to go to Gulf Shores over fall break. We were not able to go on fall break so we ended up just going for the weekend in October. The reason for this trip was so that my fiancé’s mom could have pictures made of the family for her Christmas card. On the way down there we ended up making a wrong turn and didn’t get to our condo until at least 3 a.m. The next morning my fiancé came and woke me up about 8:00. I am not a morning person, but I know that this was really the only day we had on the beach so I pulled myself out of bed. We were ready to hit the beach, but first we were sent across the street to buy beach towels while my fiancé’s mom and sister went to the beach to get chairs. Finally we made our way to the beach with the rest of his family. When we got to the beach his sister told us about a sea turtles nest that they saw down the beach. He insisted that we go and see the nest right then, so I agreed. As we walked down the beach I noticed something in the sand that was ahead of us. When we got closer I noticed that they were seashells and that they read, “Will You Marry Me?” To be honest the first thought that crossed through my mind was “Aww…someone is getting engaged today.” Just as I was thinking that I looked at him and noticed that he was reaching in his other pocket. I looked again at the seashells and confirmed to myself what they read, and then thought, “That person is me!!” By the time I turned back to him again he was then on his knee and asked me to marry him. I said yes, as my knees almost buckled and tears were streaming down my face.

This whole time his mother was hiding and taking pictures of everything! My fiancé had this whole thing planned since the previous summer! While he and his family were on vacation at the beach he decided that he wanted to propose to me on the beach, so he started picking up seashells then. Come to find out this only reason for this trip was for this. There were never any plans for pictures on the beach for the Christmas card.

I was completely shocked and I couldn’t have asked for a better proposal! – Brooke Harris

I was always impressed by a couple of paintings in my sweetheart’s house. He had painted them himself, based on photos he had taken. I had asked him several times if he’d paint something as a gift for me.

During a visit to my parents’ hometown, my sweetheart took hundreds of pictures. One of his favorite photos was under a bridge, showing the blue metal archways.

A few weeks later, we had planned a weekend trip. That afternoon was full of separate errands for each of us. He asked if I would quickly run to the store for him. When I returned to my house, he was inside. He surprised me with a remarkable painting of the bridge on my mantel! I was amazed by his gift.

As I admired his work closely, my sweetheart told me there was a hidden message. He darkened the room and turned on lamps with black bulbs. Using special ink, hidden in the painting’s arches, he had written, “Will you marry me?”

It was the perfect combination of a thoughtful gift, using my family’s history and his talents. I said YES!

The painting still hangs in our living room as we live happily ever after.
– Amanda Morgan

Me and Ty dated for over 4 years before he finally proposed. We wanted to wait until I finished college before getting married. So, when graduation day began rapidly approaching, I was on pins and needles wondering if he might propose.

I was terrified he would try to do it during the graduation ceremony. That scenario never seemed romantic to me. Some crazed boyfriend screaming in a megaphone “WILL YOU MARRY ME?” in such a serious setting. Mortifying! I begged and pleaded with Ty to never, ever propose on Graduation Day.

He obviously could tell that I was anticipating it that spring. I was very suspicious of him during my entire last semester of college. After a date or a walk in the park, I would quiz every move he made. If we passed by any jewelry stores, I would drill him about potential purchases. My goal was to catch him slipping up, so I could prepare myself. Not in a demanding, hateful sort of way, but more of a more-than-anxious ready-to-be bride kind of way. Come on. Four years is a long time to wait!! I loved Ty, and I was so ready to finally say, “I do!” It was time.

Graduation day came and passed. We were originally from North Alabama (my alma mater) and we decided to celebrate my graduation with a mini-trip to the coolest city in the South and our future home, Nashville, for the Crawfish Boil. The weekend was all a blur. I remember the band Cake playing, and eating sushi at Ichiban’s for dinner, but the relief of finally being out of school had melted most or maybe all of my remaining brain cells.

His birthday was on the following Friday (May 18th). So we decided to celebrate his birthday at our favorite hangout in Florence, Alabama. Being out of school had added a lot of free time to my schedule. And I decided to make Ty cupcakes for his birthday that night– with Guinness and Yuengling (essentially Black & Tan Cupcakes-delicious!) Summer had finally arrived, and I began to stop worrying about the whole engagement thing. I assumed it would happen later, like at Christmas or New Year’s. Boy was I wrong.

I picked Ty up for his birthday to take him to Brinley’s, and he was acting so weird. He is the most charming guy in the world. Really. But he was giving off the weirdest, creepiest vibes. He was definitely up to something.

While I was backing out of the driveway, Ty kept reaching for my hand and I kept pushing it away. “I’m driving babe. Hold on a minute.” Again, he reached for my hand, and I pushed it away. At this point, he was starting to annoy me. After backing out and then driving towards the highway, I noticed something shiny in his hand, like a coin or some type of button.

And once more, he tried to grab my hand as if to give me something, and it really started to tick me off. I smacked his hand as if he were a little kid stealing candy. I told him to please stop, because I was driving. I really did not want to wreck or get any tickets.
The devil just grinned.

I looked over and he held his hand out this time. It was no quarter. But the most elegant white opal ring I had ever seen. Yes, an opal. My favorite. And in a platinum setting. I’m not a high maintenance girl. So the platinum was a bit shocking. My ideal ring was always something designed, or antique, or hand-made.

He really HAD listened all those times I quizzed him in the car while driving by a jewelry store. I’m just not a “diamond” type of girl. My favorite stone has always been an opal. So earthy and glittery and unique. It was a huge stone, too! Completely shocked (and distracted because I was still DRIVING), I pulled over to hug him. No. To HOLD him. The man of my dreams. The one I had loved for so long had taken the time and the effort to completely surprise me. And to ask me to spend forever with him.

We both sat in the car, hugging and crying and laughing. I slipped the ring onto my finger and it fit perfectly. A size 5. The sweetheart had been able to sneak off with one of my less expensive rings, without me noticing, and helped the jeweler design my one-of-a-kind opal. It is truly special, and not because of the price.

This was in no way the type of proposal I ever expected. On a random Friday night out, in a moving vehicle, from a borderline annoying but persistent boyfriend.
Essentially, I was his birthday present.

Who needs a cupcake at that point? – Amber Arthur

had a huge Halloween party and wore an Elvis costume and while lip-synching “I cant’ Help falling in love with you” dropped to one knee when it said take my hand and proposed to her. Her mom and dad, my mom, and many other friends and family watched. – Carlye White

I wish I could say this was my wedding proposal, but alas not. We own a bath shop in Franklin, and one day a young man came in with a great request. We make a giant cupcake bath fizzy, called an Ultimate Chunk, and his fiancée loved them. So we specially made one for him and placed his beautiful engagement ring inside. He took her to a romantic bed and breakfast (I think the Hermitage, and their gorgeous tubs would have been ideal for this, but that’s just me!), shared a romantic bath with his future wife, and dropped in the cupcake fizzy! When it dissolved, she found the ring and he proposed! They returned to our shop and had their wedding photos taken under our bubble machine! – Stacy Stephens Hayden

My now husband sent me out to get videos on a rainy night after he told me we would go out to eat. I came back frustrated, cold, and wet. When I came back into my apartment and opened the door smoke billowed out! I scanned the room quickly and saw a fire to my left, which happened to be in my fireplace, (not there when I left). I knew something was up. I opened the windows and door and the flume in my fireplace to let the smoke get out. On my table was heart shape of light candles and a dozen roses, chocolates and crackers and cheese. I suddenly got a phone call from my then boyfriend. He came over and said just wanted to surprise you. He said we need to listen to the radio. The DJ was doing requests and there was a caller on the line, IT WAS MY BOYFRIEND who was standing in front of me. He had called in earlier and made a dedication with a song and the DJ said he has a very important question to ask, and my boyfriend on the radio asked me to marry him. (That part had been taped)The DJ said I had to immediately call and give my answer, little did I know all my family was listening at their houses! SO I called in live and answered yes! My ring was in the bouquet of roses on the table in what looked like a real rose but you open it up and my ring was inside. It was a very special night, but hilarious as my apartment smelled like smoke for days where he had forgotten to open the fireplace flume for the fire! It was very memorable and so special all the details he had put into it! We have been married 10 years! – Heather Rampey

So my hubby is a big fisherman….SO we went “fishing”, I just laid out, I only like to fish during tanning hours and really just lay on the boat…but as night approached and my tanning hours went away I became bored FAST! So david was fishing in this cove as I became sleepy a HUGE fish jumped across the cove I mean I REALLY saw this fish come out of the water…..!! So David of course said I have to at least see if I can catch this fish with my favorite pole (which earlier in the day I had asked him if he had a favorite pole!) anyway he cast his line and reeled in back in and said something like I didn’t catch that fish, but I’d like to catch this mermaid….and tied on the end of the line was my ring! (Glad it was insured if that fish would have gotten it) – HotYoga House

My husband and I dated almost 4yrs before we decided to get married. Both of us had previous marriages that obviously didn’t turn out so well….

I had a child, he had 3 and we needed to make sure it was a perfect fit for everyone.
I have to go back to before I ever my husband so you can grasp how special the proposal was…I prayed for a sign when I met “Mr. Right” so I would not make the same mistake again, the sign was a feather.(Don’t ask…that is just what I prayed for my sign to be). Needless to say from our first date to this day we see feathers everywhere we go. the proposal: I got a phone call one afternoon to come by and see him and the kids at this little lake…not out of the ordinary b/c we would go feed the ducks often, something the kids loved to do! I told him I would stop by on my way to get my son.
When I got to the lake to my surprise…there on the deck stood all the kids dressed up (2 girls and 2 boys.gotta brag:) and Chad was dressed up too.

I walked onto the deck and each of the kids gave me a rose and told me they loved me. (Of course I am in tears by now.) Then Chad instead of a rose, hands me feather tells me how much he loves and asks me to marry him.

Well obviously I said yes, we were married July 19,2008 and stayed at the Hermitage for our honeymoon and had a blast in Nashville! – Julie Gustin Godsey

My husband and I were walking through the grocery store debating on what to cook for dinner. We had chosen the meat but were unsure as to what vegetable to have. I remember thinking he was being especially difficult in deciding. Finally he stopped in front of the carrots and said how about carrots? I then said….you hate carrots!!!! He then pulled a ring box out of his pocket and said again… how about CARROTS? I just stared in disbelief. He later said I looked like I expected to be on candid camera.

Well, we will be celebrating our 20th anniversary on the 30th of this month. By the way, we would LOVE to do that at the Hermitage Hotel!!!!! – Kris Ann Lee

My wife and I had dated for over three years and although the topic of marriage had come up we had really never gotten further than talking about it. During that time she had discussed what kind of ring she wanted and things like that. So I went to a jewelry designer Designs in Gold and she sketched out what I told her about the ring… She then sent the sketch off to another designer in L.A who does platinum and after some time the greatest ring in the world was delivered. The ring sat in a drawer for over three months as I waited for the perfect time to present it.

So one weekend I told Jodi we were going out and she needed to bring an overnight bag but that was all the info I gave. I then set the plan into action I decided we would go on our first date again. And then at the end I would propose. Our first date consisted of dinner at GreenHills Grill and then a stroll around the gardens at Opryland hotel.

So the night in question I picked her up and went to Green Hills Grill. She still had no clue what was going on. I however could barely eat I was so nervous. Then off to Opryland Hotel to walk in the gardens. What she didn’t know was I had gotten a room and already gone earlier and put rose petals all over the bed and floor. Plus about 2 dozen candles all over the place. After our walk through the garden I told her I had a surprise and had her wait outside the room for a moment while I lit all the candles and put on some Kenny G for music. I then had her close her eyes and led her in the room. When she opened her eyes there I was on one knee with the ring out. I thought she was gonna pass out. But the room, the mood and the ring were all perfect and she said yes. That was seven years ago… We enjoyed our 5th anniversary at the Hermitage Hotel and we both were VERY happy with our stay there. We hope to come back soon. Maybe for the 8th… – Rob Morris

My husband and I had been dating for four years and knew that we wanted to spend forever with each other, We had looked at rings and talked about getting engaged for a while so I knew he would purpose, but didn’t know when. A month or two passed and my parents came down to Nashville for a visit. My dad and Brad, my now husband, were going to a Titans game and we all went to dinner before the game. I could tell Brad wasn’t quite himself and even seemed a little nervous. They went to the game and had a great time. A few weeks later I was talking to my grandmother and she let it slip that he had asked my father’s permission at the game. Now, I was excited I thought it must be coming any day. Every time we went somewhere I would get nervous, but nothing ever happened. Months went by and it was Christmas time. A few days before Christmas he told me that he was so sorry but my Christmas present wouldn’t be here on Christmas day. He felt terrible and kept apologizing. I told him it was fine and not to worry. I thought this was all a big throw-off and that he was trying to confuse me off so I wouldn’t suspect anything. It wasn’t. Christmas came and went. I started to get upset; I thought he had changed his mind. It was January 7th and I got a call that morning from Brad. He told me my Christmas present was finally here and he felt so terrible. To make it up to me he was going to take me to one of our favorite restaurants. He asked me if I could meet him at his house around 7. I wasn’t expecting anything by this point. When I knocked on the door Brad opened the door and gave me a huge hug and immediately put both his hands over my eyes and led me into the living room. He took his hands off my eyes and told me to open. I opened my eyes and saw a gorgeous oil painting of the two of us. I was really surprised, what an original Christmas present. I turned around to thank him and he stopped me. He said look at the picture again and see if you notice anything different. I studied the picture and noticed that a ring had been painted on my left hand. I looked closer and it was the engagement ring I had picked out. I whirled around and found Brad down on one knee with a ring box open. He told me how much he loved me and that he couldn’t wait to start our life to together. I of course said yes and jumped up to hug him. We called our families and headed to the restaurant. We headed to our favorite wine bar rite down the street from Brad’s house. When I walked in I was shocked! All of our friends were there. Brad had rented out the restaurant for the night. It was such a wonderful celebration and it was truly a night I will never forget. The painting hangs in our house and will always be a reminder of that day and our love for each other. – Blake Powell Paxton

My husband had convinced the manager of the Nashville City Center to allow him to rappel down to my office window, but when the building owners caught wind of the scheme, they wisely rescinded permission. My husband’s last minute call to a high rise window washer resulted in his proposal via the washer who was 24 stories high holding a sign that told me to “look under your desk” where my ring had been clandestinely taped. When I pulled my head up from under my desk, I looked up to find the entire office, plus a news crew, peering in behind my husband who was standing in the doorway.
I was so overwhelmed that I was uncharacteristically speechless and could only nod when he asked me to marry him. – Frances Fenelon

We got engaged on March 21, 2009 after being together for about 4 years. We had been doing a lot of traveling in the recent month or so and had had almost no free time to ourselves so we made a plan earlier in the week to go to Arrington Vineyards on that Saturday afternoon. It is one of our favorite places to go and relax and have great wine. The day was gorgeous, one of the first great days of spring. We made a picnic lunch and brought a blanket to lie on. When we arrived, we did the wine tasting, got a bottle of wine and went to the top of the hill overlooking everything. We had lunch and just drank and talked all afternoon. As we were getting ready to leave, I stood up to take some pictures of the scenery and when I turned around, he was on one knee. He had a little bouquet of flowers in one hand and the ring in the other hand. He said all the lovely romantic things a man should say and then asked me to marry him. We cried, celebrated and then he said that he had other plans for the rest of the day and evening. My fiancé had arranged for someone to come to our house and take the dog for the night so we could go to dinner at the Capitol Grille and stay the night at The Hermitage Hotel. We sped home, packed a bag and headed downtown for a wonderful evening! Now we are planning a wedding for April 2010! – Sarah Smithmier

My husband and I traveled to Poland to see my family. We were dating for about 3 years. We talked about the idea of getting married, but we knew we wanted to get through school first. I had no indication what was coming ahead of me. My husband was never in Poland until that summer. We did a lot of site seeing and I took him to all of my favorite places. All this time, he was carrying my engagement ring in his little book bag for the right time and opportunity. We were 2.5 weeks into our trip and I took him to the southern part of Poland to a place called Zakopane. I wanted to take him on this 8 mile hike up the mountains where there is a natural lake made from all the snow. It’s just a breath-taking place. I did not tell him about this place, I just wanted him to see for himself. So we get to the top of the mountain and he was speechless. He wanted to get closer to the lake and he told me to go ahead and wet my feet in the water. I argued with him and said the water was way cold – there was snow still in certain areas. He told me to have some fun and to go ahead and do it. I caved in. At that time, not knowing any Polish, he gave his camera to some other tourists while I was not looking. As I turned around to see where he was he was kneeling down in the ice water with a ring in his hand. I was speechless and in shock. I was like – is this for real?!!! He said yes and asked me to his wife and partner for life. I said absolutely! I forgot about the freezing water and was the happiest woman in the world. I was really impressed that he waited in between our vacation and truly picked the best place to propose to me. Our 5-year anniversary will be on August 14. We have a 3-year-old girl and 10-week-old baby girl. – Basia Skudrzyk Najarro

My AMAZING Proposal Story…
My boyfriend wanted to take me out on a special date to celebrate our 6 months of being together. When he came to pick me up he was dressed in a full suit and tie and as we walked outside there was a limousine sitting in my driveway. My knees starting going weak! He had our driver take us to the walking bridge in downtown Nashville, TN, where we had gone on our very first date. We got out and started walking up the bridge, and as we neared the top, I began to see red rose petals scattered all over the ground, around and on a bench over looking the water. His guitar was sitting in the midst of all the petals. He had me sit on the bench and he took out his guitar and sang me a romantic song he had written for me. Of coarse, I was in tears! Then he got on his knee, took a beautiful diamond ring out of his coat pocket and proposed! I was on cloud nine!!! After saying, “YES”, he slipped the ring on my finger and we headed back to the limo, where he had arranged for us to drive to a romantic dinner at… are you ready??? The “Capitol Grill” at The Hermitage Hotel in Downtown Nashville, TN!!! When we got to the restaurant, there were red rose petals scattered all over our table. It was beautiful! After dinner, my fiancé and I agreed that it was the best food we had ever had! We then took the limo back to my house to end the amazing evening… so I thought. When I got home and opened my door, my fiancé had arranged for all of our friends to be there and bring deserts and celebrated with us! If that’s not amazing enough, I was then handed a DVD. That’s when I found out that during our proposal on the bridge, he had a friend filming the entire event so that we could then come back and experience the night all over again with those closest to us. So, I got to end the night eating dessert and watching my entire proposal with all of my dearest friends. It was one of the best moments of my life!!! So, that’s my AMAZING proposal story!

I will add that, after our wedding, May 10, 2008, my husband arranged for us to have dinner, yet again, at the amazing “Capitol Grille”, where we sat and had dinner in his tux and in my wedding dress. We then spent the first night of our honeymoon at “The Hermitage Hotel”. It was the most amazing experience! – Lanae Hale

My husband and I went for a romantic weekend getaway to Hickory Bridge in Ortanna, PA (a bed and breakfast). We spent two nights there and I was expecting the proposal on the first night . . . needless to say it didn’t come. On the second night, we ate dinner at the restaurant and had a wonderful time. We went back to the hotel and planned for a soak in the Jacuzzi tub. I filled the bath, and promptly got in. My husband never came in, and the longer I waited, the more impatient I became. After about a half hour, I listened only to hear the football game coming out of the TV. Needless to say, I was very irritated as I got up, dried off and stomped out of the bathroom. My comment was something to the tune of “I can’t believe you brought me all the way up here, left me to soak in a Jacuzzi all alone and you are out here watching football!!!” He didn’t know what to say, I lay down on the bed, completely frustrated. He came over to my side and knelt down by the bedside. He asked if I was going to stay mad all night or if I would forgive him and then asked me to marry him. Come to find out, he was extremely afraid of dropping the proposal ring down the drain of the tub and talked himself out of the romantic proposal he had planned. Five years later, we celebrated Valentine’s Day at the Hermitage Hotel. – Heather Renee Abell

My husband and I were friends all through college at Samford University. It wasn’t until our 3rd year of professional school (me in pharmacy school and Alex in dental school) that we took the plunge from “friend zone” and started dating. Things obviously were wonderful and we both knew we were meant to be together, but should wait until we graduated to marry. We had been dating a little over a year and Alex was busy studying for his dental boards near the end of his 4th year of school, which were set for the middle of December. He took boards on a Tuesday and told me that the Friday after that we would go to dinner as a “thank you” to me for being so encouraging & patient while he had been occupied studying. So, on Friday I knew we were going to dinner at the Opryland Hotel and eating at Old Hickory Steakhouse. When we arrived for dinner there, the host had a “special seat” just for us overlooking the Delta area. On the table was a red rose with a sweet note attached to it that he had written. The host seated us and gave me a “menu” that was really a scrapbook Alex had made highlighting our last year of dating (how creative he is!). It was titled the “Thank You” book. Of course then I started crying because it was such a sweet gesture and he had worked so hard on it, all while preparing for his board exam. (Alex had planned this all ahead of time and the host had all his props! 😉 We had a delicious dinner and then went for a stroll through the Conservatory Area there at Opryland. We came upon a bench and he told me to take a seat and he would be right back. (He had scoped out the perfect bench and left the roses there, but a couple had sat down on the bench not knowing what was about to happen there. My husband’s parents had held this “perfect” bench the entire time we had been eating. He let them know we were coming right when we left the restaurant) He came back carrying the remainder of the red roses which each had a note tied to it describing all the attributes of me he loved. The very last rose, which the card had my now married name on, he held in his hand and dropped to one knee and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him…and of course I said yes!!! What a perfect night it was! We married September 1, 2007 and spent our first night at the Hermitage Hotel! – Courtney Fenwick Goodman

We had spent the summer separated by an ocean – her in England with college, me on Florida’s East coast with a church. I spent much time on the beach and soon found myself looking out East towards England. It was time to ask her. I could think of nothing more beautiful than a beach sunrise.

Abbie flew in to Florida and stayed with a friend. Before dawn we met and headed out to the beach. This time we would look east across the waters together. We found a quiet favorite spot of mine and sat. We read a few psalms during the horizon’s warm-up to the sunrise. Then as the sun began to break through and ignite the waters, I gave her a small but thick journal. In it I had tried to write what she means to me and a prayer that I hoped she’d say yes. The next page revealed hollowed out pages that held a ring box. As she opened it I knelt in the sand. Then my prayer was answered!

As we embraced a friend was nearby discretely capturing the moment with her camera. Another friend exchanged my car for a new and newly rented convertible Mustang. That was our chariot to an outdoor breakfast at a quaint brick café, decorated by Gerber daisies, which were later to become the flowers of our wedding. We then went on to church, 9 months later to be married, and on to this wonderful walk together that is coming into its 4th year. – Adam Graham

I was living half a world away in Xianyang, China teaching English at a university. The 1st year of my contract was completed, and I came home for a short summer break. I was thrilled to be back in my hometown for a few weeks, but I never imagined what was in store. Josh & I met that summer, & by our 2nd date we both knew that God had destined us to be together. For 5 weeks we spent every moment we could together, knowing that I’d soon be thousands of miles away. I tearfully boarded the plane back to China & knew that we’d be apart for nearly a year. Winter break came, and we couldn’t stand to be apart any longer. Josh boarded a plane for the very first time, & he and my mom flew to China together to visit me. They stayed 9 days, and then I flew home with them for a few short weeks until I had to return to finish my last semester. While I was home Josh and I visited our friends at my alma mater – Asbury College. He’d heard of a place that was special to me – High Bridge. There’s a huge old train bridge that goes over the KY River. My best friend and I used to go there & study. He’d secretly asked my parents’ permission beforehand and took me to a point at High Bridge overlooking the KY River. Before I knew what was happening, Josh was on his knee, chin quivering, shaking, and asking me to be his wife. I still had to go back to China to finish that last semester, but only 6 weeks after I returned we were married. I’m blissfully happy and thrilled to be his wife! By the way, the first night of our honeymoon was at The Hermitage! – Beth Creek

My husband and I had dated since high school (circa 1999), and then both went to colleges that were across the country from each other. After we graduated, we both ended up back in Nashville – me pursuing my career in Nursing, him in Politics and Law. We perpetually dated for the next year or so, and once again he was beckoned to return to Law school in Colorado. As I was working full time and finishing graduate school, I was certainly in no place to move, and I made that abundantly clear.

The summer of 2007, my little brother was getting married in the summer and Drew was planning to start Law school shortly thereafter. I certainly was not looking forward to him moving once again.

Drew had been working feverishly all summer, mostly 60-80 hour weeks (as campaigning is), and decided to make reservations to take me out to a nice dinner on a Sunday evening, about the only time he had off. I had not seen him much at all the past few weekends, and was becoming weary of his work schedule with the pending move.
He took me to Sole Mio, which is one of our favorite Nashville restaurants, and had a lovely dinner – lots of time to discuss my brother’s pending nuptials, my graduate school, and his plans to start graduate school that fall.

It was a beautifully sunny and rather hot weekend, we were returning to my apartment in the Belmont area, and from a distance I could see a rather large mass of flames coming from my front yard at the end of the street.

As we approached, the shock turned into excitement as I could see my entire yard was enveloped in votive candles and literally hundreds and hundreds of white roses!!! He took me out of the car, walked me down a pathway of rose petals, to a small bench also covered with rose petals, and with large candles all around. The timing was perfect as the sun was going down and the candles glowed in the yard – I really don’t recall what he said as I was in such shock – but I do remember the gorgeous ring and the most romantic setting I could’ve imagined.

I was curious to understand exactly how this romantic paradise was created as we were at dinner…. He had actually taken off work all weekend, and spent 2 days in his house with his roommates separating 500+ white roses, putting them in buckets of water trying to keep them alive in the June heat, and pulling petals off of about 200 of them. His roommates and our parents had come to my house while we were away and set up the “walkway” of roses in vases, and candles, lighting them one by one when they received a text message from Drew saying we had left, and hurriedly scampering out of sight before we came around the turn on my street. Disaster had been averted earlier in the evening, when one of his roommates felt the candles had been lit too early and the hundreds of tiny votives would burn down before we even left downtown, so they had to be blown out immediately, and then re-lit upon receiving the signal that we had left. Incidentally, the “signal” was to be a text message, and I was busy in the car ensuring no text messages would be sent while Drew was driving. After I accepted, we phoned my parents and his friends to officially announce the engagement – and they just happened to be down the street (that’s as far as they could get by the time we arrived), and so they returned to celebrate, as well help me find a place to put several hundred vases of roses in my small apartment!

And as it goes, my brother was married a few weeks later, my new fiancé had declared he had deferred his seat at Law School, and so he was in fact, also staying in Nashville (much to my relief!!!). We were married the following summer at Legislative Plaza…and of course, there were lots of white roses. – Ashley Staniewski

My husband and I were high school sweethearts, and after dating almost five years, he proposed.

It was Christmas time, and we spent the day at Opryland Hotel, walking around and enjoying all the sights of the season. We were staying at the hotel overnight for a work function, all dressed up and at a pre-party in the hotel when he asked if I wanted to go for a walk. I said sure, and when we got down to the fountains, he got down on one knee and asked if I would be his wife. We got to spend the rest of the evening filling all our family and friends in on the good news! – Brienn Klahn

My fiancée and I had been together only 8 or 9 month when he popped the question, we had dated off and on for a while before that. I broke my back doing something for theatre (which we met each other in theatre class) and he was there for me everyday, so after high school we decided to attend the same college. One day I was at work and my dad calls and was like you’ll never be guess who I talked to I was like who dad he said Michael, I was like what did he want, he said to marry you…I was so happy…well a week and another nothing happened I was really getting bumped out. We had to go back to school and I’m the one who sets a time and I need to go by that time or I freak out, any ways he was like an hours late I was MAD…. the next night we were watching a movie in his dorm room. He often took on my ring and massaged my hands, so this very night he did the same how ever when he put my ring back on it felt odd so I looked down and there set a different right, I looked at him and he was like so will you marry me…omg my heart stopped and said YES! – Ashley Star Austin



Filed under Best Wedding Proposal Contest Stories

3 responses to “Best Wedding Proposal Contest Stories (Part 1)

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