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Flash mob proposal in Bushy Park
Popping the question is nerve-racking enough but for one romantic there was no chance to run and hide, after he proposed with a flash mob in front of hundreds.
Andy Kearsley got down on one knee as more than 60 people, who gathered to take part in Bushy Park’s parkrun, sprung into a dance routine to the sound of Bruno Mars’ song - Marry You.
The grand gesture drew the attention of hundreds of runners who cheered and clapped as Mr Kearsley’s shocked girlfriend Danielle Falco said “yes”.
Mr Kearsley said: “She was completely unsuspecting because she knows how much I enjoy running parkrun.
“When the music kicked off she thought people were just warming up for the run.
“I was terrified. I was really blown away and humbled by it. She was shocked and amazed.”
After asking to take her hand in marriage, Mr Kearsely completed the 5km run in 22 minutes 49 seconds before whisking Miss Falco off to see Les Miserables at the theatre and stay in a London hotel.
Mr Kearsley, from Manchester, started planning the flash mob in December when his 25-year-old girlfriend from New York booked her visit to England.
The 28-year-old IT worker wanted to combine his love for Miss Falco with his passion for running and decided to stage the flash mob in Bushy Park.
He said: “I didn’t want to take away the joy factor from parkrun. As much as it was about my big question it was a big thing to give back to parkrun.
“The weekend went brilliantly. I couldn’t have asked for anything more. Bushy Park was amazing and the whole thing went better than I could have imagined.”
The couple, who have known each other for three years, are now looking forward to securing a visa for Mr Kearsley to move to America and hope to get married in late summer.
Zoe Riding is a keen participant in the parkrun and choreographed the flash mob dance on Saturday, February 23.
She said “It was so much fun. Everyone joined as it went on, as it’s quite easy to follow.
“All of us involved were really, really nervous. But her face when we started dancing was amazing. I don’t think she had any idea.
“It would be awesome to do it again.”
Miss Riding said there was an amazing atmosphere at the event and people enjoyed champagne and cake after the run as they also celebrated one runner’s 100th park run and another’s 300th.