31 Elaborate Marriage Proposals


Earlier this morning, our research editor Sandy Wood helped a reader propose via today's Brain Game. (She solved the puzzle and said yes!) To celebrate, here are 31 additional creative marriage proposals we've discussed over the years.

1. Muppets

Sid Ceaser proposed to Sara Prindiville as a Muppet. Really. He has been a Muppet fan all his life. When the time came, Sid ordered custom designed Muppets that resembled the couple and produced a film about them. It was shown along with the previews at a theater he took Sara to. Of course, she recognized who the Muppets were as soon as she saw them. And she said yes! Afterward, Sid posted the story of how the film came about, photographs of the happy couple, and outtakes and behind-the-scenes footage of the project.

2. Hay Bales

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William Butler took advantage of the rolling fields of Underhill, Vermont, to propose to Natalie Coughlin. He wrapped hay bales in plastic and assigned one letter to each bale to spell out "Natalie, will u marry me?" Then he added bales that had boxes she could mark"Y"or "N." When he took her (blindfolded) to see them, he had a can of spray paint ready for her to check her answer. She said "Y"! See more pictures in this gallery.

3. Google Street View

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Google doesn't normally announce when the Street View vehicles will be out, but they did once to allow people to line up and get their pictures taken. Google employee Michael Weiss-Malik took advantage of this to "upgrade" his recent proposal to Leslie. She had already said yes, but this gives her something for the scrapbook! Weiss-Malik created a website to commemorate the occasion.

4. Particle Accelerator

This summer, Dave Mosher asked Kendra Snyder for her hand in marriage. Both of them are science journalists, so Dave conspired to make it the most awesomely nerdy proposal ever. Kendra was called to the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider of the Brookhaven National Laboratory to check out a possible story about a strange crystal found in the collider. She was taken inside the particle accelerator, which was offline for maintenance, where she found out the mysterious crystal was, in fact, a diamond engagement ring.

5. Onstage (with Robots!)

Chicago actress Nina O'Keefe starred in the spring production of the play Heddatron, which is about a woman who is kidnapped by robots. Her boyfriend, Erik Schroeder, works for a different theater company, but was called on stage for the curtain call because it was his 30th birthday. However, that was just a ruse. The robots from the play directed the action as Erik pulled out a ring and proposed to Nina in front of the audience. After which the robots serenaded the happy couple.

6. Harry Potter

Redditor trehlo bought two paperback copies of the book Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. He used an Exacto knife to hollow out one copy and secured an engagement ring inside, then presented the book to his girlfriend as a gift. She, a die-hard Potter fan, opened the book, found his surprise, and accepted the ring and proposal. He then gave her the unharmed copy of the book as well.

7. Super Mario

April is a big Super Mario fan. So when Silvas decided to pop the question, he constructed a Mario World in his living room, complete with a hanging question block. Then he had her "pop the question," literally, which sprung the engagement ring.

8. Twitter

The first known marriage proposal by Twitter happened on March 2, 2008, when Greg Rewis proposed to Stephanie Sullivan. She replied with a Tweet of her own, accepting the offer. Since then, many online geeks have sealed the deal on Twitter.

9. In The Sand

A mysterious sand art installation was spotted at Ocean Beach, California, in April. An elaborate pattern contained the words, "Will you marry me Kelly?" After the pictures were posted at the San Francisco 7x7 magazine blog, readers identified the couple. The sand imprint was created by artist Andres Amador, who was commissioned by Jason Fordley, who "might well be the most romantic man in San Francisco." The question was directed to Kelly Riplinger, who only saw the huge message when the couple climbed to the top of a nearby hill. (She said yes.) The proposal was followed by a city tour, dinner, and a beach party with their friends. Photo by Jamie Shiller.

10. Movie Theater #1

Matt spend quite a bit of time preparing a movie trailer to be shown at the local theater while he was on a date with his unsuspecting girlfriend Ginny. He hired filmmaker Michael Escobar to direct the trailer, in which he asked her father for permission to marry, then ran to the theater to present the ring. Ginny's friends and family were in the audience, also unbeknownst to her. Her reaction was caught on video, and added to the trailer for the internet version.

11. Perl Script

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Colin McMillen asked fellow geek Kristen Stubbs to marry him with a perl script in the shape of a heart. When rendered, the code printed "kristen, will you marry me?" The post was titled "Propose." Her reply was the first comment posted, which said simply "$propose++; Yes! :)" This proposal was later referenced at PhD Comics.

12. Street Magician

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For his big moment, Arvin approached magician Dan Trommater for help with his proposal. He took Cindy on a walk and just happened to catch a street performance, where Trommater directed Arvin to get down on one knee to help him conjure up a "magic box" that held an engagement ring. It was a complete surprise to Cindy, who accepted.

13. Whisper Chain

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Jake Bronstein of Zoomdoggle was onstage at a World Record Appreciation Society event at Crash Mansion in New York. He was attempting to break the world record for the longest whisper chain. Bronstein whispered "Kristina, will you marry me?" to a participant. The message went around the room, through 59 people before it got to Kristina Hoge. Luckily, the message had not changed. Hoge was not expecting a proposal, but accepted immediately.

14. LOLcats

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I Can Has Cheezburger hosted a marriage proposal on Valentines Day in 2008. In a series of LOLcat images, Jon popped the question to Loretta. It was later updated with more LOLcats to verify that she did, indeed, accept.

15. Jack-o-Lanterns

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This Old House held an online pumpkin carving contest for Halloween 2008. One of the 12 winners was this series of jack-o-lanterns that spelled out a proposal, submitted by Katie G. of South Bend, Indiana.

These pumpkins were carved using a pumpkin carving tool and family for workers. My fiance carved every single letter when he proposed to me on Halloween 2007. There's also a heart-shaped pumpkin below which held my engagement ring. I said YES of course!!

16. Stealth Website

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KC's boyfriend made a website to ask KC to marry him. The odd thing is that he didn't tell KC about it! His aim was to spread the word via random networking on the internet until it got back to her. Meanwhile, anyone visiting the website could accept the proposal -but had to pass a quiz to determine if the respondent was the real KC. After nine months, KC finally found the site and passed the quiz, and the answer to the proposal was yes!

17. Not Exactly as Planned #1

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Don Walling prepared a memorable proposal for Gina Pellicani. He took her, her sister, and his family to the walkway on the Brooklyn Bridge to present her with a ring. Then at the big moment, he dropped the ring, which fell through a crack down onto the roadway below! The ever-gallant Walling climbed down onto the roadway into heavy traffic and retrieved the ring, which was bent but repairable. Pellicani accepted his offer of marriage.

18. Not Exactly as Planned #2

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Reed Harris planned a creative proposal for Kaitlyn Whipple by planting a ring in her milkshake. She was supposed to be surprised when she reached the bottom of the shake, but there was no ring. She had swallowed it! The couple went to a hospital and x-rays confirmed that Whipple had the ring inside her. Harris then proposed by presenting Whipple with the x-ray evidence. She accepted, and the ring, uh, appeared two days later.

19. Star Trek

We don't know who is behind this engagement ring presented with a pun, but we believe the woman holding the box in this picture may have accepted it. When Jean-Luc Picard, captain of the USS Enterprise in the TV series Star Trek: The Next Generation says "Engage," you are expected to "Make it so."

20. Comics

Jim asked Julie to marry him by creating a website with comics drawn of their lives together. The narrative tells how they "met cute" online, started a puppet theater, and battled Jim's cancer, and leads to an illustrated proposal. A video of her reaction has been added at the end. Warning: this will tug at your heartstrings.

21. Window

The Window is a comic strip that appears on a set of windows in downtown Lafayette, Indiana. When Joe Broussard wished to propose to Shayla, he asked the cartoonist, Ryan Bidlack (Bids) to help him out. The comic led readers around the corner ("especially you, Shayla") for the kneeling cat asking, "Will you?" When she finally realized it was targeting her, Shayla said yes.

22. Internet Memes

Kristjan Thompson asked for the help of his favorite blog in popping the question to Alexandra. The result was a series of images from various internet memes that spelled out the proposal, ending with a Venn diagram.

Alexandra's reaction was illustrated as yet another internet meme.

23. Graffiti

When Shannon proposed to Jessica, he enlisted the help of an urban street artist to paint a mural, and since street art doesn't last, a filmmaker to record the event. The finished product includes Jessica's affirmative response.

24. Light Writing

Derick Childress spelled out his love for Emily with light graffiti! This image was not created by Photoshop, but by shining lights in precise places over the actual architecture in Raleigh, North Carolina. The testing and photography took place over three nights, and was combined into a solid video after three days of editing. When Derick showed his "current project" to Emily, she couldn't help but say yes.

25. Movie Theater #2

Steve began preparing his proposal to Tracey nine months ahead of time by writing a script and hiring a professional production team to put together the story of their lives, past, present, and future. It was shown at a movie theater among other trailers for the benefit of Tracey alone. She was puzzled that this "coming attraction" hit so close to home, but didn't catch on that it was about her until the end. Steve incorporated Tracey's fear of dying in a plane crash, but gave it a happy ending with a marriage proposal, which she accepted.

Note: These last few come from fellow _flosser Andréa Fernandes.

26. Disney Flash Mob

Earlier this year, Jamin proposed to his girlfriend Valerie at Downtown Disney with a Marvels Dance Company flash mob. The video, showing both the flash mob and Valerie's reactions, quickly shot around the Internet, racking up almost 3 million views.

27. Defeating Teddy Roosevelt

As anyone who's ever been to a Nationals game knows, Teddy Roosevelt never wins the Presidents Race, a footrace between the four presidents whose faces grace Mt. Rushmore. Since people love to root for the underdog, Teddy quickly became a favorite of fans, including one Jennie Kushlis. Her boyfriend, Matt Hendrickson, staged an elaborate proposal at Nationals Park, which included a one-on-one footrace between Matt and Teddy.

28. With Dolphins

YouTube user djsirian proposed to his girlfriend of 4 years on their anniversary, July 4, 2006, with the help of some dolphins.

29. On a Tour of Street Art

Aaron Vanden collaborated with artists to create a secret street art tour of images symbolic to his relationship with girlfriend Tamara Altherr. When they reached the last piece, he proposed.

30. After Escaping from a Straitjacket

Jason Gardner, an "escape artist and intuitive," proposed to his girlfriend while hanging upside down after escaping from a straitjacket during a performance at Quincy Market in Boston.

31. With a Flash Mob

We'll end with another elaborate dancing proposal that went viral this fall. Nam Tran enlisted the help of Flash Mob America to propose to his girlfriend Trang Vu where they first met, at their alma mater, UCLA. A highlight of the video: when Trang exclaims, "How'd you get my whole family here?" (Her family lives 300 miles from the school.)