Dutchess County Fair Ferris wheel proved perfect place for proposal
Editor’s note: The Dutchess County Fair opens a six-day run at the fairgrounds in Rhinebeck today. Following is a look at special memories from the fair enjoyed by a Malden couple.
RHINEBECK, N.Y. — If a guy has his head already spinning over the notion of proposing marriage to his girlfriend, then a Ferris wheel may be the perfect place to pop the question.
Chris Snykus took that approach during the 2007 Dutchess County Fair and today admits it wasn’t the romantic side of him that spurred him to ask Liann O’Keefe-Sommer to marry him while overlooking the fairgrounds.
“I was just looking for an appropriate moment, place, time, something fun, something memorable,” he said.
“I’m afraid of heights,” Snykus said. “So the ferris wheel was the perfect coverup for how nervous I was or how excited I was.”
Snykus said there were no concerns about losing the ring accidentally while going around on the ride.
“We got on it and went around a couple times,” he said. “Once I got over the actual height fear, I asked. Fortunately, she said yes.”
The bride-to-be said there was no hesitation in giving an affirmative answer when the proposal was made.
“I was very surprised,” Liann Snykus said. “He wanted to go to the Ferris wheel before we left. It was all the way across the fair and I said ‘seriously? Really, you really want to do this?’ It was late already and really surprising because he’s afraid of heights.”
She said the discussion about marriage began when the couple was on top of the ride and “by the time we came down I was in shock.”
A year later, on Aug. 23, 2008, the couple, who now have two children and live in Malden, were married in Saugerties at ceremonies after which guests headed to the Dutchess County Fair.
“We had our wedding at New World Home Cooking and within the program for the wedding and reception everyone was told we’d been heading to the fair afterwards,” Snykus said. “We go back every year because it’s special and the fair is pretty awesome.”
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