What would the holiday season be without a few marriage proposals, right? But here’s one that went public over the weekend, and in one of Baltimore’s most public places during the month of December, 34th Street in Hampden. Nick Jones got the big idea of surprising his girlfriend by putting his proposal up in lights along Baltimore’s internationally-renown holiday midway.
He and Alexis “Lexi” Lupfer are high school sweethearts. They’ve been an item since the day he asked her to the junior prom in front of their advanced-placement course in statistics at Liberty High School in Carroll County. “She was incredibly embarrassed,” Nick says, “but for some reason said yes. We dated all through high school and later became class couple of 2009. Though we ended up going to different colleges, we stayed together.”
Lexi attended James Madison University in Virginia, Nick went to Towson University. “We talked on the phone every single night and visited as much as possible,” he says.
Life goes on and Nick and Lexi are still together in 2015. They’re both 24. He works in marketing and public relations for the Bank of Glen Burnie. She’s a graduate student in school psychology at Towson. He decided to buy her a ring and ask her to marry him as Christmas approached.
“The idea of asking Lexi to marry me on 34th Street was an idea from my stepmom,” Jones says. “We have never seen the lights on 34th Street. Usually, every year around Christmas, I join Lexi’s family at the Symphony of Lights in Columbia. But, unfortunately because of renovations to Merriweather [Post Pavillion], we could not go this year. So, instead, I convinced her to go to 34th Street in Hampden for the Christmas lights. I came up with the idea to propose to her by making a giant sign for 34th Street. Luckily, our friend, Jenny Hensley, recently moved there and graciously agreed to be part of the day.”
Nick and his dad, Mark Jones, spent two weeks working on the 80-inch-by-30-inch sign. It took 400 lights to spell: “Lexi WILL YOU MARRY ME?”
Says Nick: “We measured out each letter on the foam board and poked holes for the lights with a screwdriver. Our fingers were sore.”
The sign was installed and ready on Tuesday. Nick picked up the engagement ring from Smyth Jewelers in Timonium on Thursday. He planned to propose on Saturday night. His strategy: Text Jenny and have her turn the sign on just as Lexi walked up the stairs to her house on 34th Street.
“I think Lexi knew it was coming,” Nick says. “For some reason, she was all dolled up. She had her nails done the day before and wore a new dress to look at Christmas lights? I mean, come on, she had to know.”
Nick parked the car on Beech Avenue and sent Jenny a text as he and Lexi walked up 34th Street.
“There was a huge crowd around the Natty Boh house, two houses before Jenny’s,” Nick says. “I took her around the crowd. We saw Jenny on her porch. . . . Lexi began to walk up the stairs to say hi to Jenny when the lights came on. I got down on one knee. I have no recollection of what I said. I asked Lexi to marry me. She said yes and the crowd around us cheered as our closest friends came out from inside Jenny’s house to congratulate us as well. It could not have gone any better.”
Nick says he and Lexi hope to move to Baltimore soon. They're looking at 2017 for a wedding.