Derek and Steph | Washington Square Park Proposal

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How we met: Derek and I met Memorial Day Weekend 2012. His group of guy friends and my group of girl friends both planned to do a share-house in Montauk, NY to have a wild summer with our friends. Both groups did not have enough people separately, so a mutual friend set up the two unacquainted groups to join forces. 25 singles in a 3-bedroom house seemed like a recipe for disaster, but for the cynics out there who don’t believe in love at first sight, our housemates will tell you otherwise. We were soon nicknamed “Sterek,” and never even made it through one hour of night one before engaging in a lip-locking session that pretty much lasted us the rest of the summer and ever since.

How he asked: I am the co-founder of a wedding venue, Cedar Lakes Estate, and spend all of my days planning other people’s weddings. Because I work in the industry, I never thought Derek would be able to surprise me with a proposal, but I have truly never been more shocked in my life. The video tells it all…

And the story goes like this… I woke up on my 27th birthday to a note letting me know he got us a hotel suite for the night and I should go check-in. When I arrived, there was a birthday card on the bed saying that this birthday theme would be a “night of favorites” and would begin with dinner at my favorite restaurant, Lupa. After a delicious meal, Derek told me the next stop would be a short walk away through Washington Square Park – my favorite park in NYC. Under the famous arch, we stopped to listen to an incredible a cappella group singing my favorite doo-wop music. I thought nothing of it until they turned my way and sang happy birthday! Still just thinking this was a birthday surprise, they started to sing “This Magic Moment” – my all time favorite song, and when I turned to Derek, he was down on one knee holding the most gorgeous sparkling ring I had ever seen.

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After dancing to our song under the stars, I called my sister who said she was waiting with a bottle of champagne at a nearby bar.

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Little did I know, Derek had arranged for all of our favorite people, friends and family from all over the country, to surprise me upon arrival and celebrate our special night.