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The big question

Students spill proposal adventures

staff writer

Published: Thursday, February 14, 2013

Updated: Thursday, February 14, 2013 12:02



Utah has one of the highest marriage rates in the U.S., but for couples to get to the altar, they have go through something just as nerve-wracking first: the proposal. USU students know how to get creative when popping the big question. 

For Madeline Newhouse, a senior majoring in elementary education, the proposal experience was an adventure. It happened January 2013 during Christmas break. 

Alex Casey, Newhouse’s fiance, made her lunch and reenacted their first date. For their first date, Casey put up a tent inside his house with a couch and flat screen TV. On this occasion he put a table and chairs in the tent so they could eat lunch inside. 

After lunch, Casey took Newhouse to do one of their favorite dating pastimes: geocaching.

“For Christmas, my parents gave us GoPro cameras,” Newhouse said. “Alex told me to bring mine because it would be fun to record our geocaching adventure.”

Newhouse was somewhat leery of the ordeal and suspected a possible proposal.

“He told me he didn’t have the ring and it wouldn’t be here until the next week, but I was still suspicious,” she said. 

They went to an area with hiking trails and a lookout. Newhouse said Casey began getting nervous and acting anxious. 

“He made sure I turned my GoPro on and began charging ahead of me while I tried to film it,” she said. “He was giving me clues of where the geocache was and I was just trying to keep up with him.”

Casey navigated Newhouse toward a bench and Newhouse climbed around a bit before finding a green box. Inside the box she found her favorite candy and a small brown box.

“He took the camera and set it down so it would be filming us,” she said. “I opened the little box and it said, ‘Will you go on an adventure with me?’ He then got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.”

Casey set up his own camera prior to the occurrence so he could get the entire proposal on film from another angle.

Not all proposals go so smoothly, no matter how well-articulated the planning.

Dana Shumway, a sophomore majoring in nutrition, recalled her crazy experience. Shumway’s fiance Trent Hales took her sledding on Jan. 14 2013, which turned out to be the coldest night in Logan since 2008. 

“He told me that we should go sledding down Old Main since I’d never been before,” Shumway said. “I was completely oblivious.”

Hales had talked to Shumway’s mom and sister ahead of time so they could come to Logan and be there for the entire ordeal and met with them before picking up Shumway

“When Trent and I went sledding down Old Main Hill, my mom, sister, friends and roommates were at the bottom waiting,” she said. “Then suddenly cameras were flashing everywhere.”

Shumway turned around and saw glow-in-the-dark lights with the words ‘Will you marry me?’ Hales then got down on one knee and asked Shumway to marry him. 

“We kissed and got excited,” Shumway said. “Then he opened the box and we both looked down to see it was empty. I didn’t really know what was going on until he started freaking out. Then I knew he really didn’t know where the ring was.”

Shumway said everyone there was extremely helpful and nice and helped look all over the hill for the ring. They retraced Hales’ steps and everywhere he had been since the last time he saw the ring. 

“The last time he saw the ring was twenty minutes before he came to pick me up,” Shumway said. “He’d met with my mom and sister and showed it to them.”

Throughout the next few days Shumway and Hales filed police reports and used metal detectors in hopes of finding the ring, but were not successful. Shumway and Hales are still hoping the ring somehow shows up, but have a loaner ring for a few months in the meantime.

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