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March 2005

Our Members Speak Out

Creekwalk Inn at Whisperwood Farm, Cosby TN

We asked: What’s the most romantic thing that ever happened at your inn?  

Question for our April issue:  Have you hosted any military personnel before and/or after deployment to Iraq?  Please share your experiences.

“A young gentleman called from Atlanta, planning to bring his sweetheart to the Smokies. I agreed to have roses and a welcome basket ready on their arrival. He had requested a private dinner for his proposal, but the dinner location was a secret to his intended. Off they went, dressed for a lovely dinner out. After a short drive, he blindfolded her for the ride to her dinner surprise. We had prepared the private porch off their room with white table linens, candlelight, and a private chef in attendance. He brought her through the garden to the porch, then took off her blindfold at their lovely table. The evening progressed splendidly. He wrote, in great exclamatory style in the guest book, ‘She said YES!’” Janice Haynes, Creekwalk Inn at Whisperwood Farm, Cosby, TN

Here’s the most (hilariously) romantic thing that ever happened at our Inn... “A middle-aged couple came to Alaska on their honeymoon to pan for gold. She was smitten; he was intent on finding his fortune! They stayed in our honeymoon cabin, the Hide Away. We provided the gold pans, waders and shovel, but he brought his own milk jug and rope. When asked him at breakfast what he planned to do, he replied: ‘I’ll fill the jug with water for weight and use the rope to connect it with her ankle. That way, when she is out in the middle of the river, digging up the tailings to bring to shore for me to pan, I can drag her to shore if she happens to slip and get dragged downstream.’ He spoke seriously, and she lovingly replied that it was so romantic of him to be so concerned about her safety. The look on her face, however, revealed her underlying fear, and he had to let his secret out that he never intended to send her out into the river. Everyone had a good laugh, but no one were more relieved than the blushing new bride!” Ken & Mary Littlefair, Alaska Gold Rush B&B & Cabins, Palmer, AK

“In over nine years of innkeeping, I still think the most romantic thing to happen at our inn was when a lovely young man -- a high school football coach -- requested my help so he could propose to his sweetheart. I thought it was a little odd, but he just didn’t know how to make it special. He reserved our most romantic cottage, and had me prepare a candlelight dinner (He arrived in jacket and tie; she was wearing a beautiful cocktail dress.) Dinner went beautifully. They lingered over their dessert and seemed to have a wonderful evening. However, when he left, he whispered he hadn’t asked yet. Hmmm. The next morning, the breakfast room was full. My husband and I watched as they came out of their cottage and walked up the path to the house. About 10 feet divided the two of them; she had her arms folded, he had his hands in his pockets. I was afraid that it hadn’t gone well the night before. They came in and sat down, not saying a word to anyone. I took my coffee pot over and asked: ‘So how are you this morning?’ ‘Oh, fine’ he responded. I asked again, ‘Really, how are you?’ Then he caught my drift and responded, ‘Oh, I’m great! We’re great! We’re getting married!’ The entire room broke into applause. In this day and age of people being so casual about relationships, it was refreshing to see such a terrific guy wanting to make everything go just right. I was happy that I could be a little part of it!” Celeste Gardiner, Apple Orchard Inn, Durango, CO

“Sure B & Bs are for romance, but when the romance lumbers down your drive in a 35-foot Winnebago and two very mature individuals tumble out, this innkeeper had to smile. My bride and groom were both 70-plus. They had met on the Internet – fairly recently. My Texan groom had driven through the Fall 2004 hurricanes to get to his bride in South Carolina. Together they loaded up all her personal stuff into his ‘chariot’ before they headed to Missouri for their wedding. Their rings weren't ready when the groom left Texas; thank God for FedEx! My florist lost their wedding flower order, but the last-minute bouquet of stargazer lilies was beautiful. The bride wore high heels -- for the first time in a very long time. It soon became evident that she was not going to be able to walk in them to the quiet corner of the yard they'd chosen for the ceremony. I brought her the bathroom scuffs from her guestroom... and then helped her slip into her magic slippers when she reached the ceremony site. The bride and groom spoke their vows plus a very special message to one another. The sun was shining; the birds were singing. The bride and groom cried. His son cried. I cried. The minister passed out hankies. Then we all laughed. I was so touched by the depth of their emotions and how important those few minutes in a corner of my yard were to truly was the most romantic thing that's happened at our inn. Sue Westenhaver, The Inn at Harbour Ridge, Osage Beach, MO 65065

“A young man called to make a reservation at our B&B. He asked me if he and his girlfriend could take a ride in our Model A. We said yes, because we love to take guests sightseeing through this beautiful farmland and rolling hills. He then said that he wanted to ‘pop the question’ in our Model A, and was that OK? So we devised this plan: we took them to the top of a nearby hill, overlooking a lake. My husband feigned back pain, stopped the car, and said that he needed to get out to straighten his legs. I got out with him and we walked away from the car. Ten minutes later, as we returned, the bride-to-be waved her left hand at us, grinning from ear to ear. She said ‘you knew about this didn't you?’ It was beautiful to share their happiness. We were glad that she said ‘yes!’” Wendy Duvall, Country Life B&B, Greenwich (Saratoga Springs), NY

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