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Hailey and Brady's Proposal at the Japanese Stroll Gardens

A Surprise Proposal and Engagement Session at the Park

I met Brady and Hailey at a wedding venue open house. This is a couple that when you meet them, you can tell they are meant to be. They chatted back and forth easily and were excited about the future. When I meet couples for the first time, I often ask "How did you meet?" This question brought smiles to their faces. Hailey looked at Brady and joked, "I tell people I picked him out at Walmart." When they were younger, Brady worked for Walmart and Hailey happened to meet him while he was working there. This sounds like the perfect start to a Hallmark movie love story 😁. I think I might steal the idea 😂.

I quickly found out that they were not engaged yet. I told Brady that if and when he decides to propose, I would love to be there to capture the moment. Within two weeks, Brady reached out to me telling me that her ring had officially come in and he had started planning the big day. Spring and Fall in the Ozark's are two of the biggest times of year for brides and grooms. Many couples plan their engagement sessions and weddings during these times in hopes to either time the blooming of the trees and flowers or the changing of the colors in the trees. If chosen just right, the results can be magical. But it's not without risk. These times of year also bring in large amounts and rain and fluctuating temperatures. You never know what you're going to get.

The day in April Brady picked to propose was beyond beautiful. Perfect Temperatures. Not too hot or cold. Tulips in full bloom. Trees were covered in buds and flowers. Sun shining in the sky. He enlisted the help of his two friends, Karmyn and Jordan, to be there and assist with the proposal. While Brady went to get Hailey and bring her to the park, Karmyn, Jordan, my husband, and I got to chat. Karmyn and Jordan are both music majors. Which I instantly connected with them on because that was what I originally started to go to school for 😁. Plus band is how my husband and I originally met. Music is engrained in our souls. It definitely made me miss my music days while I chatted with them. Karmyn and Jordan planned to surprise Hailey and Brady by performing "Can't Help Falling in Love" by Elvis Presley while Hailey and Brady walked up to the gazebo. ❤️

Jordan and Karmyn spotted the couple and all four of us got into position. Walking hand in hand, Brady navigated Hailey across the bridge where she spotted a sign with the words "Marry Me" in large letters. The ground was lined with three pictures. Music had begun to play. Brady got down on one knee and Hailey immediately said "yes." Smiles and tears of joy on both their faces.

After the proposal, I asked if Hailey would be interested in taking a bunch of photos and we immediately jumped right in. We wandered through the Japanese Stroll Gardens until 7 p.m. Down to the minute, we power walked out of the garden where a Springfield Greene County Park Board employee was standing waiting to congratulate them on their engagement. She might have been as exited as they were! She asked to take a photo of them to share the news on their social media pages. Hailey and Brady hopped together and smiled wide for the camera.

Until sunset, we walked Nathanael Green Park and admired all the beautiful scenery that springtime brought. We took photos next to Tulips, water fountains, and finally the most beautiful trees surrounding a gazebo. We almost passed on the gazebo until I saw that the orange glow of the sun had caused the buds to flame hot pink and purple. It was so beautiful I told them they should just get married here and now. All we would need is an officiant 😂. Brady and Hailey, I had the best time with the both of you. A big CONGRATULATIONS on your engagement. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to capture this memory in your story.

Brady + Hailey


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