Senior Kyle Forti and his fiance Hope Nowak are what you could call high school sweet­hearts. When he moved to Michigan to go to college and she stayed in Cal­i­fornia, they made it work by devel­oping their own way of staying close despite more than 2,000 miles sep­a­rating them.

“We always sent each other our itin­erary before we visited,” Forti said. “So I pho­to­shopped my itin­erary and sur­prised her at the hotel she was staying at with her family at 4 a.m. and said, ‘come with me.’ I started driving and asked her where she wanted to go – ”

“— I said Carmel, the most romantic place on earth —”

“— Where I was driving already.”

After driving most of the night, they arrived at about 10 a.m. and walked together on the beach — the beach where he would propose that very morning.

“It was the same beach [where] my grand­parents got married, we were engaged, and we’re getting married,” Nowak said.

The week fol­lowing grad­u­ation, the two will be married in Carmel. After being engaged for almost a year and a half and spending months apart because of dis­tance and school, they will finally be together.

“I guess you could say we knew what we wanted, even if we didn’t know at the time,” Forti said.      

Senior Casey Holmes and fiance Jon Gregg ‚’11, reached new heights the night Gregg popped the question.

“I always told him I would only go up [to the top of Central Hall] if he got signed per­mission from the pres­ident to go up,” Holmes said. “And he did! Dr. Arnn gave him per­mission, and I knew he was going to propose.”

After arriving in Hillsdale several hours before she expected him to, Gregg got some friends to bring her in front of Central Hall where he was waiting — with signed per­mission to ascend Central Hall together.

“And then he pro­posed on top of Central Hall at about 3:45 in the morning,” she said. “It was really important to me that he took the ini­tiative and picked the ring and decided when to propose, and he did.”

Having been engaged for only a little over a week, Holmes said the daze hasn’t quite worn off and wedding planning will com­mence sometime in the near future.

For seniors Nikki Yancho and fiance Logan Shoup, location was crucial for both the engagement and the wedding plans.

“I’d been planning on asking her for a while,” Shoup said. “She loves apple orchards, and I found a couple right around here. I was going to take her to pick apples and then get around to asking her there, but it turned out there were no pick-your-own apple orchards.”

After driving around to a couple dif­ferent orchards for a few hours, I looked up more orchards on my phone, she said.

“By then I began to suspect some­thing,” Yancho said. “We ended up at this orchard after driving several hours from Hillsdale, and we were the only ones in the whole orchard.”

“I found one on my phone and [when we arrived] he got me jumping for high up apples and then when I turned around he pro­posed!” Yancho said.

The couple has rented out the Hillsdale College Arboretum and McNamara Hall for June 22, 2013.

“We found it’s kind of our place,” he said.

“It makes sense – it’s a place that fits us,” she said.


In proposing to senior Natalie Kerner, Carl Avery ‘11 mixed the perfect amount of romantic spon­taneity with planning ahead to sweep her off her feet.

“Over Fall Break I went to visit him in Vir­ginia where he is going to law school,” she said. “On Friday he was going to take me to the beach after his classes, and then he called me in the morning saying he had over­slept and just wanted to skip his classes and take me to the beach he picked out.”

Keeping her con­vinced it was a happy accident, Avery had time to prepare the whole morning.

“He sur­prised me with a picnic and made a bunch of really good food –– I think I started sus­pecting around then –– and then he pro­posed on the beach.”

While their plans aren’t com­plete yet, the couple will be married on July 29 of this year and are con­tinuing to plan while apart.

At times it is best to wait for that perfect moment, and in others it is your actions which make the perfect moment. In the case of Junior Amanda Rubino and Chuck Grimmet, ‘12 the moment was made by the inability to wait.

“It was over Christmas break, he had the ring for two days and had breakfast with my dad to ask per­mission. He was going to wait till Spring Break, but he couldn’t wait,” Rubino said. “I went out with his family for dinner, and he just couldn’t wait. He called me at 12 a.m. and woke me up and asked me to meet him at the front door with my coat. He nor­mally plans every­thing ahead to keep things in order and work per­fectly, but he isn’t like that with me,” she said.

“We went on a walk and he took me to where he first kissed me and pro­posed,” she said, “and I thought it was perfect.”

Rubino and Grimmet are planning their wedding for June 22, 2013, after she has com­pleted her degree.