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8 Outrageous Marriage Proposals You Have to Read to Believe

Some grooms to be are really willing to go the extra mile to surprise their potential brides, so much so that all the normal down-on-one-knee-with-a-ring stuff looks like child's play. We caught up with some particularly adventurous types who were willing to share their over the top, totally outrageous marriage proposals.

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When in doubt, include her pet cat

“My husband pretended that our kitten ate the promise ring he had gotten me,” shares now-wed Kristen Roberts. “As I frantically searched for it—and I was hysterical—he sat me down and said, ‘I think you might need a new ring’ and then asked me to marry him. I was so flustered with the entire situation I just kept crying and asked him if he was joking. I finally realized he was serious and my kitten didn’t eat the promise ring, and said yes.” The cat, by the way, was holding the new and improved ring. Check out this marriage advice from folks married 50+ years.

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This guy took Pearl Jam to the next level

“My now-hubby knew I was a giant Pearl Jam fan, and we had a trip to Paris planned,” shared Nadine Courtney of her husband Erik. “He had a Hollywood composer friend of his (who has done the music for a zillion films) orchestrate a version of my favorite Pearl Jam song, “Yellow Ledbetter,” and then had a French friend of ours scout out two random musicians in Paris to learn it and play it. When we were in Paris visiting our friend, she took us down by the Seine for a walk, and I saw these two musicians hanging out by a bridge. I sort of rolled my eyes, because it had just started to rain, and I was like, ‘Musicians hanging out under a bridge in the rain?! How French!’ But Erik walked up to them and asked them in French he had learned if they knew how to play “Yellow Ledbetter.” Obviously they did, they started playing it, and then we danced to it for about a minute before Erik got down on one knee and proposed.” Think it sounds super cute? The video of the proposal is even cuter.

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Some guys surprise a girl at work

This beaming groom-to-be from Brooklyn included his girlfriend’s entire elementary school class in his proposal. Her young students each participated in the surprise proposal by holding flowers, cheering the couple on, and generally making the warmest, cutest environment anyone could every ask for. You can see the video here. Find out the secrets to making your marriage work for the long haul.

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Some men make it known that marriage will be a real cliff-hanger

When Jason Daniels wanted to propose to his rock-climber girlfriend, Melissa, he knew he would take her to the mountains for a good climb to do it, because nothing helps make a list of outrageous marriage proposals quite like a little danger. “She’s always scaling a mountain because that’s where she feels her calmest and most in her element, and that’s exactly where and when I needed to catch her for the proposal. I hid the ring box inside the water bottle I had attached to my harness and started heading down a really steep cliff with her. She was a few jumps ahead of me, and when I caught up—about 250 yards above the regular ground level—I popped the question. We were in a dangerous spot though so we couldn’t hug till we were all the way down. I got a quick ‘YES!’ and a peck on the cheek, and slid down a mountain as fast as I could. I couldn’t wait to call our families.”

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Go big on network TV or go home

When Marlon LeWinter proposed to Ashley Yanover, he knew a standard dimly-lit dining room at a popular restaurant just wouldn’t be memorable enough. He managed to appear in the Today Show’s outdoor audience and stage being picked as the audience members of the day to get inside the studio—Ashley thought it was fun but never caught on that something bigger was about to happen. As Ashley gave the hosts a helping hand reading from the teleprompter, Marlon went into full proposal mode, and she obviously said yes. You can see the whole adorable engagement here.

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If you bring her to a serene lake, make sure you bring a hairdryer

When Marcus Rein proposed to Jessie Janis, he thought he planned the most perfect, dimly-lit sunset dinner on the dock of a local lake in their Michigan hometown. He set up a cafe-style table, two fabric-covered chairs, brought a picnic basket, and even hired a guitar player to strum softly—what he didn’t plan was the weak wooden boards at the end of the dock where he would end up kneeling to propose. By the time he was mid-question one of the wooden boards came loose, shifted beneath Jessie, and she was tossed into the lake. “Luckily it was July, really warm, and I was obsessed with Marcus so I would’ve said yes no matter what, but falling in definitely made it one of the most outrageous proposals we’ve ever even heard of,” Jessie shared. Not all love is perfect–this man found his long-lost love after 75 years. 

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Don’t bring a ring to the top of a lookout point over the ocean

“I thought I was being brilliant and creative,” shares Kirk Gunner. “I brought my girlfriend to her hometown in Hawaii to propose at the top of a lookout point over the Pacific. Everything was perfect including the pink-ish sky, my best friend as the photographer, and the weather, but when I proposed I brought a ring that was a little too big, and it slipped off her finger when we were hugging after her ‘yes’ and through the cracks of the lookout point’s viewing deck. Somewhere in the Pacific off Kona there’s a $5,000 ring if anyone is looking for buried treasure.”

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How sweet is this couple’s marriage scavenger hunt?

“Rebecca is impossible to surprise, and she’s an accountant, so she’s very analytical. I knew she would appreciate some kind of thought-provoking proposal, so I set up a ring scavenger hunt that took her across several state lines,” explains Jason Lowenthal. “She didn’t know she was playing for marriage or a ring, she just thought we were out for a super fun and wacky Sunday afternoon because we’re that kind of couple. I left clues on the bathroom mirror that led to a local brunch spot and had waitstaff leave clues with her coffee. Those led her to the next spot, a park several miles away where we first met. She kept going through the trail, 18 destinations in all, and by the end of the day she was exhausted, out of gas, somewhat annoyed, and at her mom’s house—where I proposed in front of her entire family. She likes to say now that I was preparing her for an exhausting but thoughtful marriage. Probably true.” Want some more romantic inspiration? These 28 couples share the moment they knew they had found true love.

Bryce Gruber
Bryce Gruber is an expert in gift ideas, shopping, and e-commerce. You've likely seen her work across a variety of women's lifestyle and parenting outlets and on TV shows. She lives and works in New York's Hudson Valley with her five small children.