Farmers share stories ahead of Valentine’s Day
By Diego Flammini
With Valentine’s Day this Sunday and love in the air, Farms.com contacted members of the ag community who were interested in recounting instances of romance between them and their partners or spouses.
Will Bergmann, a hog and grain farmer from Glenlea, Man. shared how he proposed to his wife, Jen.
He met Jen, a city girl from Winnipeg, in 2003 when they were members of the Prairie Voices choir.
After two years of dating, Bergmann realized Jen was the woman he wanted to spend the rest of his life with.
“The time had come, and I asked her dad Gord for his permission to marry her and he was good with it,” he told Farms.com.
Bergmann decided to plan an evening that included activities the couple liked to do together, and the proposal would take place somewhere special to he and Jen.
“I booked a reservation at a nice restaurant and we were going to go back to (La Barriere Park in La Salle, Man.) that held some significance to us,” he said. “We had our first kiss there and loved going for walks there.”
The park also has a nice walking bridge, and that’s where Bergmann planned to pop the question to Jen. But to execute his plan, he needed help.
“I’m not kidding when I say I bought probably 1,000 tealights,” he said. “The plan was for us to go for a walk through the park. My cousin Andy had the ring and was waiting in the park ready to light tea lights for me so when we came back from our walk there would be this magical lit up bridge and it was going to be romantic and perfect.”
On that night, however, Mother Nature had different plans.
The wind was too strong for Andy to get any tealights lit and an audible had to be called on the fly.
“It was the kind of wind where shingles are coming off the roof,” Will said. “Jen and I are halfway through this walk and I get a call from Andy and I’m trying to be very secretive about it.”
Andy and Will hatched a new plan.
Andy left the ring and a flashlight near a box where a lifesaver is stored. The rest is up to Will.
“Jen and I come walking back and we go under the bridge and I say ‘oh, what’s this, there’s a light over here,’” he said. “I got down on one knee, she said yes, and the rest is history.”
Looking back on the proposal, the evening was very fitting of living a farm life.
“How fitting that the weather made us change our plans, but also how fitting how the weather never stopped us,” he said.
Will and Jen will celebrate their 16th wedding anniversary in July. The couple have three children, Brooklyn, Cole and Emmett.
Matt and Kate Atkinson, beef producers from Neepawa, Man., shared how they met and how Matt asked Kate for her hand in marriage.
The two met in 1999 while living in British Columbia showing horses.
“It’s kind of a small community and we met that way,” Kate told Farms.com.
It would be another two years before Matt and Kate officially became an item.
The proposal happened in 2006.
Matt had been showing horses in Arizona. When he returned to B.C., the couple booked a weekend trip to Pemberton, where he popped the question to Kate.
“It just kind of happened and it was unexpected,” Kate said. “It’s not like we went away and I was thinking he was going to propose. So it was definitely a surprise.”
The couple married in 2008 after family members weighed in on their situation.
“Family members encouraged us to get organized and get married, but it wasn’t going to be any different for us,” Matt said. “We were already engaged and lived together, it just seemed like a lot of work,” he said.
The Atikinsons will celebrate their 13th wedding anniversary this year. They have one daughter, Evelyn.
For some ag-inspired marriage proposals, check out this list.