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AUTHOR NOTE: I wrote this as a blog entry at Cup Crazy's National Hockey League blog (yes, my own hockey journal) on July 10, 2008. Tune in to Food Network on August 28th at 10:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time for a special "Ace of Cakes" episode featuring the newlywed couple that I wrote about in this article! Scheduled repeat airings will be shown through October 19th. You can also see a preview of the episode at the Washington Capitals' official web site and look at the "special offers" window on the home page.
You may recall me posting a blog entry back on March 26th about how I spent the second half of my Easter holiday weekend. Okay, I extended it by a day, but it was well worth it. The highlight of my time away from home for about 30 hours was when I went down to the Philadelphia area to visit my long-time friend Derek and we went to see the Philadelphia Flyers host the New York Islanders at the Wachovia Center. It was a personal experience I really wanted to write about and I'm glad I did.
Now there is another personal story to share. But it is not about me and it does not even involve me either. The great part is, I learned about it and since it was one of those stories that would even cheer up the most depressed person on Earth, I just had to share it with you.
I interact with hockey fans on a handful of forums, but after recently joining The NHL Arena, my beginning was a lasting impression. The Washington Capitals message board moderator was one of the very first members to greet me and welcome me to the community. I was most certainly very appreciative with my thanks.
Prior to the July 4th holiday weekend, I had noticed on display at the forum's main home page the most recent Capitals board thread that was posted on. The title of it caught my eye since it was the recognizable moderator's user name that was shown. The NHL Arena's Washington Capitals message board moderator (or "general manager" as they call them there) capscrazy and fellow forum member Flipper recently got married.
As it turns out, it was about their wedding and they had shared with fellow members some photos of the joyous occasion. But little did I know, this wasn't any ordinary wedding.
In their wedding photos (displayed here with permission from the couple), Michelle (capscrazy) and Dave (Flipper) wore the traditional attire, the beautiful gown for the bride and handsome tuxedo for the groom. But it doesn't stop there. At their wedding reception, they themselves and members of the wedding party wore Washington Capitals jerseys that represented every era in team history. Still, that isn't where it ends.
Michelle and Dave had their wedding cake in the shape of the Stanley Cup accompanied by edible pucks. There were miniature hockey sticks also featured in the display, but they were made of styrofoam, so you obviously could not eat them. They also have miniature characatures of themselves placed inside the Cup's bowl! No, you cannot eat them either.
The Washington Capitals organization was aware of the wedding day and they had a production crew film the festivities, primarily the reception. And let me say that if my favorite team had wanted to record a personal milestone in my life, I would feel so honored. For Michelle and Dave, I wouldn't doubt it was for them.
The more that I learned of this wedding with the message board chat, I began to think of a story I had seen on cable television in the recent past where a couple celebrated their love at a local hockey rink and were dressed in hockey jerseys. I recall it being during the season, so it wasn't too far off in terms of when it took place. So I mentioned this to Michelle and said I saw a TV feature about a similar story to theirs.But little did I realize after Michelle directed me back to the forum thread topic on their wedding and showed me a YouTube video clip, the story I ended up seeing back then was actually THEIRS! I'll let my forum post to the couple speak for itself. I have to correct myself now that you provided that video clip! In reference to what I saw a while back, it was not another couple I saw... IT WAS YOU TWO that I saw on television! HOLY COW! I cannot believe it! I cannot believe it! (forgive me for my state of shock and jumping up and down in excitement) I figured out how I just realized that whom I saw at the time was in fact you and Flipper! I noticed the date of the video you posted. Back then, I had access to Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic's SportsNite show via one of the FOX College Sports channels on my cable channel lineup. Then when the story had come up at the time, I was glued to it when it aired. I was not 100% sure it was you two when you first mentioned you and Flipper got married and had posted the lovely pictures. The ones where you two had worn Capitals jerseys while beside the wedding cake had me wondering if what I saw on TV were the same people. I just couldn't be sure until I saw the clip you posted last night. I was convinced when I saw the camera views of you guys on the practice rink and in front of the penalty box. THAT is when I was completely sure. Again, WOW! Wow, wow, wow. I cannot believe I had run into the lucky couple on a hockey forum. I never thought this would've ever happened. The crazy small world we live in, isn't it? I apologize I couldn't tell you and Flipper sooner that there was no other couple and that it was indeed you guys. Another congratulations for getting your great story on television back then! I couldn't be happier. Think I was just a little excited? I'll bet that you're laughing right now.
At the time that television feature aired on Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic, Michelle and Dave were engaged and had participated in the Save The Date card photo shoot at the Kettler Capitals Iceplex (the team's practice facility) in the couple's hometown of nearby Arlington, Virginia. But how did they meet, you ask? According to the television feature, the couple first began interacting on hockey forums and that led down a path to where they are today.
What approach did they take when making their wedding plans?
"We completely ran with what we would want to do for our wedding," Michelle explained in the television feature story. "So we said, 'hey, why don't we try some hockey stuff'. The more we kept looking up, the better things looked. We might as well decided we went with a complete hockey themed wedding."
Dave added, "We just wanted to have a little fun with it."
And by the looks of what I see, they indeed did.
What makes their road to matrimony unique is that they said their first date was on the first day of the NHL lockout. That would place it on September 15, 2004. It may have been the darkest day in professional hockey history, but it marked the beginning of true love for Michelle and Dave. With the two of them as passionate of hockey fans in our nation's capital can be and where fan following for their beloved Caps couldn't have come at a better time when they wed, there are even more post-wedding celebrations to come for them. Yes, one of them can be another playoff appearance for the Capitals next spring.
Another one of those celebrations outside the hockey arena comes when Michelle and Dave will appear on Ace of Cakes, a Food Network reality television show that covers the daily operations of Duff Goldman's Charm City Cakes shop in Baltimore. Viewers can tune in on August 28th at 10:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time to see Michelle and Dave's outstanding Stanley Cup wedding cake. So make sure you mark you calendars and go check it out!
When I saw their Save The Date card photo shoot featured on Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic last year, I was simply amazed. Seriously, I was in complete awe. But little did I ever realize that a year later, I would end up in contact with them in some way and learn that story I saw was indeed theirs.
This is undoubtedly a hockey fan's dream. Nine times out of ten, you are likely to see only a traditional wedding and the typical formal reception. That includes the huge wedding cake. But Michelle and Dave wanted this to not only be special, but take it to a whole new level in making it the most memorable day of their lives and tell the world in their own way how much they unconditionally love each other. What a better way than to tie in their first love (the Washington Capitals) with their second (their inseparable companionship).
Yes, guys do dream. I have envisioned what it would be like to marry a woman who loves hockey as much as I do. Plus, I wondered what it would be like for it to be in a place where it isn't exactly the norm. Uh oh, I just gave that away, didn't I? To be honest, for what this couple did, it would be very hard to top. But why would you? Theirs is too admirable that you really wouldn't want to.
Michelle and Dave as Capitals season ticket holders can be found at the Verizon Center in downtown Washington watching and cheering on their team. If you see them at the arena, be sure to say hello and pay them a compliment. Tell them how you found out about their wonderful wedding story and how great of hockey fans they certainly are. I know I sure will. This is the kind of tale Michelle and Dave will someday tell their children and even grandchildren. This is better than the premise of the CBS comedy How I Met Your Mother, the love story of how the show's main characters Ted and Robin fell in love and would lead to matrimony.
That reminds me... it is a shame that The Learning Channel no longer airs a show that would be perfect for Michelle and Dave. That would've been the reality show, A Wedding Story. An episode of their own would've captured the hearts of so many people. I know the female viewers would be shedding tears, that's for sure!
Congratulations, Michelle and Dave. And the very best wishes go out to you on a most joyous life together as husband and wife!