Elaborate Proposal High Above the Streets of Philadelphia

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Ashlee Mintz Photography, L. Priori Jewelry, Red Oak Weddings
Zachary and Jen first met at the Mayors Cup in 2015 but their relationship blossomed after Jen made it to a track practice at Temple University. "Small talk was turning into something more than we both expected," Zach said. "We just fell in love and into a groove because honestly being with someone who is into the same things you are just makes things so much easier and enjoyable." He says he always knew he wanted his proposal to be elaborate but intimate and after talking to jeweler, Lauren Priori, knew exactly how he wanted to propose.
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Ashlee Mintz Photography, L. Priori Jewelry, Red Oak Weddings
So, when was the right moment? "When you know, you know, and I knew quickly," Zach said. "I would do anything for her and simply put her and her happiness first before anything else." Lauren mentioned to Zach that a photographer she knew, Ashley Mintz, wanted to capture a proposal and the idea immediately popped into his head-- the balcony of XIX at the Bellevue where Zach and Jen's first date ended.
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Ashlee Mintz Photography, L. Priori Jewelry, Red Oak Weddings
Jen had plans to run the Philadelphia Marathon on November 20th so Zach chose the day before to propose. He decided to tag along during her morning run before the race and steer her run to end a few blocks from the Bellevue. So how did he get her on to the balcony? "That's when it happened-- on Broad and Chestnut 'my stomach is not feeling good and I need to find a bathroom ASAP.' I told her that there's a private bathroom in the Bellevue that would work," Zach said. "Jen thought I would just use the Starbucks bathroom on the lobby level but I knew there was a real private bathroom upstairs at XIX."
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Ashlee Mintz Photography, L. Priori Jewelry, Red Oak Weddings
"It's 8:15 am, we are both hot messes from our run, got off the elevator, walked through the restaurant past people who were dressed like they belonged there, and I made a beeline to the balcony because I needed "fresh air", said Zach. The staff at XIX were all in on the proposal after Zach met with them to sort it all out, so the balcony was all theirs. "Jen was ready to throw me off the balcony because we should not have been up there but there we were, in the same place where our first date ended. So, I turned got down on one knee and asked Jen is she wanted to PR life with me and fortunately, she said yes."
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Ashlee Mintz Photography, L. Priori Jewelry, Red Oak Weddings
"The staff brought out champagne for us and we just stood there taking it all in," said Zach. "We were happy, and then I pointed to the other building and told Jen that we have some paparazzi taking pictures and to my surprise, she was okay with this-- engagement bliss I suppose?"
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Ashlee Mintz Photography, L. Priori Jewelry, Red Oak Weddings
"Zach knew that Jen wanted a lot of sparkle and a bright, white stone," writes Lauren on the Red Oak Weddings website. "After looking at several diamonds and discussing how to balance the 4 C's, we settled on a sparkling round diamond set in 5 sturdy prongs."
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Ashlee Mintz Photography, L. Priori Jewelry, Red Oak Weddings
"I had arranged with some of Jen's close friends and a few of our local family members to be inside the restaurant to surprise Jen as we celebrate with no better food than our local favorite-- Federal Donuts and champagne," Zach said. "Pinkies up!"
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Ashlee Mintz Photography, L. Priori Jewelry, Red Oak Weddings
"That Saturday was a warm, sunny, beautiful day so we walked home, with donuts in hand, engaged, and then it was time for Jen to relax for her race the next day which she did awesome in and easily qualified again for the Boston Marathon in 2018," Zach said. "I couldn't have been prouder as her support crew."
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