McKenzie and Corey

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How We Met

Corey and I met when I was 16 years old. I was a sophomore and he was a junior in high school. Corey was a popular, good looking football player and I was on the dance team. It was the first day of 10th grade, and juniors and seniors didn’t start school until the next day. As I sat in study hall and our teacher read off the class roster, I heard the name Corey Babcock. I lit up with excitement and told all of my friends that COREY BABCOCK was in my class! He came into class the following day, but I was way too nervous to talk to him. Shortly after the school year began, my friends started telling his friends I had a crush, and then his friends started telling me he also had a crush on me. Many of my friends knew it was bound to happen: “watch, you’ll start dating Corey Babcock.” And they were correct. After about 6 months of “talking”, he asked me to be his girlfriend. As our year went on together, I remember thinking, “Why did I meet him so young? High school couples never stay together forever and this is the person I want to marry.” After his senior year, he left for St. John’s University while I finished senior year of high school. We decided we hadn’t gotten enough of each other, and wanted to try making long distance work. After my senior year I went to an even more distant college out of state, yet we made sure to stay strong as a couple and never gave up on our relationship. Here we are today… I am marrying my high school sweetheart, soulmate, and favorite person on Earth!

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how they asked

It was a typical Friday, and I had only three days left of the school year with my students as an elementary school teacher. I had been out of town on an overnight field trip with my kids, so Corey and I had not seen each other all week. He texted me on Wednesday and asked if we could catch up and go to dinner on Friday night. Friday comes, and I thought this was going to be just another dinner date. However, before I leave for work that morning, Corey said, “make sure you wear something nice to dinner, we are going to a fancy restaurant.” I smiled and said “okkkaayy…?” (He normally would never tell me what to wear). That’s when I immediately started beaming with happiness on my way to work thinking, “It’s going to happen today!” I got to work and couldn’t contain my excitement, so I told one of my co-workers what he said that morning. She completely talked me out of it, stating the timing would be weird since we still had one more week of work, he will wait until summer, etc. I listened to her, but little did I know she was in on Corey’s big surprise. I finished the work day, arrived home and slowly started getting ready for our dinner date.

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My roommate/best friend came to help me get ready and asked me what I’m wearing, which I thought was pretty normal because it’s something she would do. Little did I know she was also in on this surprise, and was making sure I was looking ‘ready to get engaged’. (Also, the day before this my roommates asked me to go get my nails done with them and I thought nothing of it!). Corey came and picked me up for dinner, and I noticed right away that he had a fresh haircut and brand new shirt on. As we were heading to dinner, I could tell he was acting a little nervous; again I started thinking that maybe this was the day. However, at dinner Corey mentioned he had to get home by eight o’clock to watch the NBA finals game; I was again back to thinking this was not the day.

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After dinner we walked across the street and got some ice cream and I thought the night was over. Little did I know… On our way home, he mentioned he found the perfect spot to watch the sunset when he was on a run earlier in the week and asked if I wanted to go watch. We pulled up to Shadow Falls Park and it was the most beautiful night with the sun starting to set over the Mississippi River. It was a popular spot, but Corey led us down into a wooded trail… this is when I knew it was happening. I look down towards the river out to the sunset and saw the most beautiful, romantic set-up: a rose petal path with candle lanterns and photos of us at all stages of our relationship. At the end of the path was a blanket I had made for Corey before he went off to college eight years prior, and a beautiful basket of flowers with a bottle of champagne.

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Corey walked me down the aisle, both of us shaking and beaming with happiness. When we got to the blanket, Corey talked to me about our relationship and gave an amazing speech that he had memorized. At the end of his speech he got down on one knee and proposed. Of course, I said yes!

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We popped the bottle of champagne to celebrate, but the surprises didn’t stop there. Suddenly two of my best friends came running out behind the woods to surprise me; they had been there setting up and helping Corey, along with one of his friends.

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Us five celebrated, watched the sun go down and then left the amazing proposal site to go celebrate more with a drink. We arrived at Surly Brewery, walked in, and all of my family and friends were there to surprise us! Corey made sure all the most important people in our lives were there following the proposal.

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We relived the wonderful night and took many photos. At the end of the night Corey shared with me he had one last surprise- a hotel in downtown Minneapolis for the night! In the room he had rose petals laid on the bed, and champagne for one last toast. This day was so perfect in every way, and I could relive this day over and over again. Thankfully our amazing photographer captured the proposal beautifully, and even created a video so I can reminisce. It was the best day of my life and Corey could not have planned it any better!

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Our Video

Special Thanks

Saige Fehresti
 | Photographer and Videographer
Walker Clark
 | Photographer
Cici Fortney
 | Photographer