Ashleigh and Michael met in the spring of 2014 as members of the Lewisburg Area High School Girls’ Track and Field coaching staff. Michael was a second year distance coach with the program and Ashleigh had returned to her alma mater to offer her expertise. After a month of coaching together, Michael admitted to their head coach/mentor/dear friend, Jon Clark, that “you don’t date a girl like Ashleigh Wetzel. You marry Ashleigh Wetzel.” Michael shamelessly pursued Ashleigh for weeks of preseason and regular season practices and meets as his coaching staff, teaching staff, friends, and athletes watched in amusement. Ashleigh, meanwhile, remained oblivious to Michael’s blatant interest and happily became best friends with him. Ultimately, unable to contain his love for her, Michael sat Ashleigh down and frankly confessed his affection towards her and his desire to be both her best friend and beau. Ashleigh considered his words for a moment, perhaps piecing together the significance all of the goofy smiles, awkwardly too-long-held hugs, small gifts, and the fact that Michael had been ironing her clothes at night for two weeks, and, much to Michael’s relief, agreed to his proposal.
With their busy fall schedules filling up rapidly, Michael sought the blessings of Ashleigh’s family more than two weeks in advance of his proposal. Gregg, Debby, and Grandma Bev cooly kept a tight lid on Michael’s big plans. The morning of September 20th arrived and all the plans had been carefully coordinated. Michael insisted that Ashleigh wear her running outfit to Baylee’s soccer match so that they could go for a run immediately afterwards. Ashleigh, not used to Michael being so organized and insistent, wondered why this particular workout was so important. However, he had asked her earlier in the week if they could do a track workout that day, so she assumed he was just operating in Coach mode. Michael carefully hid the ring in the zip pouch of his short running shorts, then proceeded to sit awkwardly on the blanket at the soccer match in order not to put any weight on it. Luckily, Ashleigh was in action photographer mode and paid no mind to his stranger-than-usual behavior. After the match, they dropped Baylee off with Ashleigh’s family and set out to the Lewisburg track. Once at the track, they went through their typical warmup routine and began their repeat 200’s. Meanwhile, Michael’s friend, Mike, as had been planned, secretly snapped photos from a distance. At 11:55, in the middle of the workout, he pulled Ashleigh onto the infield of the track. At the spot where Michael and Ashleigh first locked eyes in a moment of coaching-induced jubilation and romance, Michael proposed that they pledge to remain best friends forever and marry each other. Ashleigh agreed. Mike then came out from hiding to snap a few more photos as a limousine pulled up to the gates of the track. Out stepped the driver with a sign which read, “For the future Mrs. Ashleigh Espinosa.” The couple stepped into the limo to the sounds of the playlist that Michael had made for the occasion. Inside, champagne, gatorade, gummy bears, items for freshening up, and a change of clothes awaited. The limo driver followed a wandering route through Lewisburg’s countryside before ultimately dropping them off at the Towne Tavern. There, awaiting their arrival, were Ashleigh’s mom, dad, grandma, and Baylee, along with Michael’s mom, dad, and brother. The engagement reception included food and drink, along with dance entertainment provided by Baylee. Ashleigh, Michael, and Baylee briefly left the Tavern for a limo excursion. Michael asked Baylee if the three of them could be a family forever, to which she gleefully agreed. He presented to her a Princess Pearl necklace so that each year he can add on more pearls as a reminder of his promise to always love and take care of her. The Wetzpo’s were officially engaged and the excitement has been building ever since!
Ceremony site: Barn at Hidden Acres, Bloomsburg
Wedding consultant/planner: Ruth Kranig who along with her husband owns The Susquehanna Chef, Bloomsburg
Flowers: The Details Matter, Danville
Gown and accessories: Stella York dress bought from Taylored for you Bridal Boutique, Mechanicsburg
My necklace is from two diamonds from my grandmother and the groom which Foss Jewelers made into a necklace
Hair & Makeup: Hair -Shear Bliss Salon, Lewisburg Make-up-Advanced Skin Care, Lewisburg
Rings: Foss Jewelers
Music: DJ Joey Z, Bloomsburg
Favors: Etsy = Mint Favors and more along with bulk candy from the Candy Warehouse
Transportation: Bonds Busing
Photo Booth: Minnig Photography
Photographer: Nicole Dumond