Ian & I were both psychotherapists at the same clinic when we met. He looked my name up on the staff roster to ask me out. Our first date was at the Coney Island Amusement Park riding the Cyclone and the Wonder Wheel and walking the beach together. It was so much fun and very romantic.
During our courtship I think we fell in love with Coney Island as we were falling in love with each other. We spent a lot of time on the beach and we’d watch the free fireworks together on Friday nights in the summer.
2 years after our first date Ian surprised me with a candlelit dinner. We walked to the boardwalk in Coney Island (just like on our first date) and there were free fireworks, with bands playing and we started to slow dance on the beach.
“I wanted to propose at the site of our first date where all of our wonderful memories have taken place,” he said.
It was perfect. That night was particularly special because the mayor of Brooklyn was holding a special ceremony on Friday July 7th, 2006 to light up the Parachute Jump for the first time. So there were fireworks and bands playing all down the boardwalk and the Parachute Jump glowed in the background. On the Boardwalk, the man in the karaoke booth announced that we were engaged and everyone congratulated us.
Then we bought these large tikki cups in the amusement park and made a toast together to our future. We rode the Wonder Wheel together, just as we had on our first date and when we came down there was a machine that stamped pennies with the date. I wanted to give Ian something to remember that moment too so I took that stamped penny and had it melded onto a silver disk to make it into a keychain that Ian still carries it with him.
Today we still love Coney Island and we enjoy it with our two kids. I think it was partially the magic and romance of Coney that brought us together.