Ricky and Anne

1) The Courtship

I am Ricky (the Groom) and I’m from Vancouver, Canada.  Anne is from Manila in the Philippines. Anne came to Canada on a Working Visa – she was only supposed to stay a few months but her contract kept getting extended. I was a greeter at my local Church and my partner got pregnant and couldn’t serve anymore. Anne was assigned to greet alongside me. On Christmas 2009, I asked Anne out on a date. She brought 7 friends along with her! However, I was persistent and patient and Anne finally went on a one-on-one date with me. We made our relationship official on Feb 12, 2010 (the opening day of the Olympics). I did an incredible proposal to Anne who was returning from the Philippines on Jan 1, 2011 (New Years Day). The proposal ended up making the front page of The Province as well as Global and CTV News.

2) The Proposal

I organised the proposal totally in secret while Anne was on a 3 week vacation to the Philippines. I wanted to propose at the Airport but I also wanted this proposal to be extra special and unique. I organised my friends from Facebook and Church through a secret Facebook Event page to wear their ethnic cultural clothes and bring signs in multiple languages saying “Will you marry me?”. I then asked Harbour Dance Centre to choreograph a dance routine to Bruno Mar’s song “Just The Way You Are.”. Finally, I did a press release to the local media. On Jan 1, 2011 I proposed in front of family, friends, and curious onlookers at YVR. Anne was overwhelmed and overjoyed and said “Yes”. Her parents were watching on Live Stream in the Philippines.

3) Wedding Planning

We looked at many different venues from Churches, to gardens, to beaches, to halls, to hotels, to golf courses. However, when we stepped foot on The Wedding Yacht, we both felt a strong desire to get married there. It was a bit expensive for our budget so we saved money by looking for photographers and videographers on Craig’s List, getting a student from VCC to design our wedding cake, doing lots of bargaining with vendors, as well as cutting down on the guest list. I am a big picture person while Anne is details-oriented so this helped in the planning as we both focused on different tasks. Like all planning processes, there were small setbacks along the way, but we overcame them all. The process of wedding planning strengthened our relationship as we learned so much about each other in those months of planning.

4) The Wedding

We had the most beautiful wedding on The Wedding Yacht on Canada Day (July 1, 2011) with fireworks to end the night.  There were 70 guests and many of them said it was the most beautiful wedding they had been to in their life. The weather was beautiful, the scenery was gorgeous, and the food was delicious. The ceremony was held on the Sky Deck, the reception was on the Dining Deck, and we had our first dance right before the spectacular Canada Day fireworks on the outer deck. We designed a Comic Book to give out to guests at the end of the night as wedding favors.

We learned a lot from our wedding planning process! Here are our Top 5 Tips:

  1. Stay calm at all times (you are a team working together with a common objective – always remember that).
  2. Do your research (visit at least 3 vendors for each category before making a final decision).
  3. Treat your vendors nicely (they will reciprocate with lots of perks!).
  4. Get your RSVPs done quickly (we had a few last minute cancellations which created stress on our part).
  5. Sign contracts (make sure everything is written down and clarified so there are no surprises).

Photography by Melissa Rayasam

Ms Gingham says: Such a heartfelt day full of beautiful surprises. Thanks so much to Ricky for sharing his day from a Groom’s perspective!

Ricky says: We had an incredible Canada Day Wedding (July 1, 2011) with fireworks to end the night!