Northern Lights-Inspired Marriage Proposal

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How We Met: Background: Kristen and I met in 2005, during our sophomore year of college at San Diego State University. We met at a fraternity/sorority function (Riki was in Phi Kappa Psi, Kristen in Gamma Phi Beta), and started to date soon after. We dated all through college, even when I went off to go study abroad in Japan for 7 months. We took a break after college, but soon realized that we couldn’t live without each other. We love traveling, and I knew if she can handle being stuck with me during those long train rides and airport layovers – she was a keeper.

How He Asked: Kristen’s dream ever since I’ve known her was that she always wanted to see the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis). We were invited to a friends wedding in March in the UK, so I planned a 2 day layover in Reykjavík, Iceland to try to catch the lights. Unfortunately, the weather didn’t cooperate and all Northern Lights tours were canceled during our time there. Needless to say, she was very sad…we came all the way to Iceland and failed to see the Northern Lights. When I got back, I thought it would be a really cool idea if I can some how bring the northern lights to her. Since it’s impossible to see them in Southern California, I researched local and out of state planetariums to see if any of them carried a Northern Lights show. Luckily I found out that the Griffith Observatory had “The Lights of the Valkyrie” – a 30 minute planetarium show all about the northern lights. I drove up a week before to go check out the venue and to meet up with my good friend Jon Pierce. I originally had asked him to take a picture of the proposal, but he thought it would be a great idea if we filmed the entire proposal. I told my girlfriend that we were going to see my uncle surf, since he’s a sponsored surfer and comes down to Southern California for surf competitions all the time. I tricked her into getting her up to the planetarium, telling her that we would meet up with him for dinner instead as the competition finished early. After roaming around the observatory for a little bit, we watched the northern lights show. After the show had ended, I quickly ran to the bathroom and had my friend Jon mic me up. We walked around the outside of the observatory, checking out the beautiful LA skyline. And the rest, was history.

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Video by RSJP films.