Lauren and Eric

How We Met

From Lauren: We met at a party on the University of Minnesota campus. I went to St. Catherine University in Saint Paul, so I was visiting a high school friend who was going to the U of M, where Eric went to school as well. We met in the most romantic way possible, playing beer pong. I went up to him and commented on how tall he is, since he is about 6’5″. We hit it off talking the whole night and eventually exchanging numbers. We went on our first date a week later and the rest is history.

From Eric: Lauren and I met at a house party when we were both sophomore’s in college. I went to the University of Minnesota and she went to an all girls school, Saint Catherine University in Saint Paul. We both knew a person that was at the party so we both got invited. While we were in the basement, this cute blonde girl came up to me and said “Wow you’re tall”. We then started talking and hanging out and some people convinced us to play beer pong. The teams ended up being her and I on one team and my friend and her friend on the other. I’m pretty sure we won. :) After the party we went our separate ways, but with each others phone numbers. Years later, Lauren dug through my old tweets and found my tweet from the night stating “Lots of fun, met a gorgeous girl had the greatest night! I love college!” and liked it. We decided to hangout the next weekend since it was the University of Minnesota’s annual Spring Jam concert. We went to Punch Pizza and ended up missing all of the concerts! For the next couple weeks, I would either go to St. Kate’s and visit or her and her friends would come visit me on campus. Her friends would just tag along in the hopes of seeing boys, since there weren’t any on the St. Kate’s campus. When I would come over and visit, I would bring peanut M&M’s and sugar free Red Bulls, to bribe her roommates/best friends into liking me! I think it worked! From then on, Lauren has been my best friend and my favorite beer pong partner.

How They Asked

From Lauren: A few days before the proposal my friends reached out to me to ask if a wanted to go to a fancy charity event that one of their parents had tickets to. It was at the Como Park Conservatory, which is a beautiful greenhouse building. We have gone to similar events like this together in the past and I never miss a chance to get dressed up, so I agreed to go. I was a little suspicious of them since I had a feeling a proposal was coming around this time, but I decided to believe them since I was more suspicious of New Years Eve which was a couple days later. My sister also took me to get my nails done the day before *just in case*. The night of I got all dressed up and meet up at my friend’s apartment to head to the event. They told me we needed to walk though the greenhouse gardens to get to the ballroom area, and wanted to stop to take pictures in the Sunken Garden. When my back was to the door taking pictures of my friends Eric snuck up behind me and surprised me. I was thrilled and couldn’t stop giggling. My friends ran away and Eric got down on one knee! I found out that the event I was going to was totally fake and that Eric had planned the whole thing with my friends and my sister. It was totally perfect!!

From Eric: The planning started a couple weeks before hand. After I talked to my parents and her dad, and went a bought the ring, it was time to start planning how I was going to ask her to marry me. I texted her best friend a very vague message asking if she was free for a beer. She was, so we arranged to meet at a brewery in a hour. When we got there and I told her the reason we were there, she was ecstatic. We sat there and drank beer for two and a half hours and could not come up with an idea that would meet our standards and would be even remotely possible to get Lauren to do without being suspicious! My mom when I had talked to her mentioned seeing a Poinsettia display that was beautiful and said I should look into that as a location. I eventually found out that that place was the Como Conservatory! I looked at their Instagram profile and I knew that was the place. They even conveniently had a post saying “Do you want to get engaged at the Conservatory? Email this address”, so that just sealed the deal. I knew I wanted the date to be before New Years Eve and when I contacted the Conservatory, they told me there was a time available on the 29th and that I could rent out the entire Sunken Garden! Once I had a location and a date and time, it was time to get ahold of Lauren’s best friend again. We met at another bar to brainstorm how we could make this work without Lauren being suspicious. At first we thought an Art Gallery event would work, but then we knew Lauren would look on Facebook for the event, so that option got thrown out. We eventually thought of a private cocktail hour for people who have donated to the Zoo and Conservatory. Laurens friend texted her and their other friend saying that her parents had these tickets but couldn’t go, and wondered if the three girls would be interested in going before they turned the tickets down. The wait was on to hear back from Lauren as to whether our plan was going to work! After a 20 minute wait, Lauren texted back that she was open that day and that she’d be interested in going. She even asked if it was a dressy event! Lauren had always hinted that if she was going to be getting proposed to, she wanted her nails done. Since her best friend helped get her to the event, it would be suspicious if she also asked Lauren to get her nails done. I then brought Laurens sister Lizzy into the planning committee! She was excited to help and stealthily convinced Lauren that they should get their nails done on Friday night. So now all the plans were set and it was time for the day to arrive! Lauren and I hung out all day, so I had to be extremely careful to stay calm and relaxed. As the time got closer she got ready and I drove her to her friends apartment to finish getting ready. That allowed me to run back home, change into nice clothes, and get to the Conservatory. Laura (the photographer) and I spent time walking the Sunken Garden and going through the final details. As the girls left the apartment, Lauren’s friend texted us updates on where they were. When they got 4 minutes out, I hide behind some trees and flowers. The girls always took group pictures before events, so we knew Lauren would want to take some photos. The girls directed her into the Sunken Garden and said how it’s a perfect location for their group photos. Laura and I were waiting outside the garden, hiding behind trees, waiting for the girls to get to the other end of the garden. For the first couple minutes, the girls stayed right around the door and weren’t going in all the way! Eventually they worked their way to the other end of the garden. Once Lauren was the photographer for her friends, I started sneaking into the garden. At one point, Lauren started turning around, so I dove behind some flowers to get out of sight!! Eventually she kept taking pictures and I was able to sneak right up behind her. The girls went to look at the photos and at that point Lauren turned around and saw me! I was pretty relaxed up until then, but when she saw me, I got very excited. I couldn’t help but smile! She was extremely surprised! I helped her up the stairs and got her to stand in the spot the photographer and I had planned. Now my heart was racing and Lauren was crying and laughing which made me laugh and cry along with her! I got down on my knee and told her how much I love her and that she’s been my best friend since they day I met her and I nervously asked ” Will you marry me?”. She responded, “Yes. Of course Yes!”. All my nerves left after she said that. She couldn’t stop laughing which made me laugh uncontrollably! From then on, all my nerves were gone and I was relaxed and excited!

Special Thanks

Como Zoo
 | Location