By Roger Knox, Black Press
The crowd at Enderby’s Starlight Drive-In Theatre got an extra bonus for the July 2 double feature.
A marriage proposal.
Revelstoke’s Tony Tomson and Stacey Lamont, who met online, were at the drive in for the fourth straight July 2. Like everybody else in their vehicles, they were there to see Tom Cruise star in Edge of Tomorrow, backed with 22 Jump Street.
The couple, about to become co-owners of Revelstoke’s Your Office and Art Centre, had their first date at the Starlight – Lamont had never been to a drive in, Tomson, a Salmon Arm native, had been to the Starlight many times – on July 2, 2011.
Tomson took Lamont to see The Hangover 2 after a day at Salmon Arm’s Herald Provincial Park hiking to Margaret Falls and then dinner.
Every July 2 since, Tomson and Lamont have recreated their first date with the night ending at the drive-in.
“I knew I was going to do the proposal at the drive in probably after our first year, when we went to the drive in the second time, July 2, 2012,” said Tomson, 36, a computer technician. “I knew this is what I wanted to do.”
So, on July 2, the couple went back to Herald Park, had dinner in Salmon Arm, then drove to the southern outskirts of Enderby and settled in at the drive-in for the double feature.
Tomson said he was very calm during the day, playing it cool. Lamont, 31, had no idea anything was going to happen.
By the time they got to the drive-in, Tomson started getting excited. His biggest challenge? Keeping Lamont away from the concession.
“She wanted to get popcorn before the trailers and I’m like, ‘No, no, let’s watch the trailers,’ and she’s going, “What? Why?’” laughed Tomson. “She started to figure something was going on. That’s when the proposal came up on the big screen.”
Normally, the Starlight plays an old Britney Spears Pepsi commercial before launching into the trailers. This time, up on the big white screen, for all to see, was a picture of Lamont in her roller derby persona – Lumen, like light – and the question (well, actually a statement as there was an exclamation mark instead of a question mark): “Lumen #29…Will you marry me!”
“It was left on screen for awhile and when I asked her to marry me when it came up, she didn’t hear me the first time because she was still crying,” said Tomson. “She said yes.”
Tomson e-mailed the drive-in owners in January about his plan, and co-owner Paul Lindquist happily obliged.
“We thought it was pretty cool,” said Lindquist. “We’ve never done that before.”
The only pre-proposal glitch was that the Starlight had to figure out how to convert Tomson’s slide image to run in its digital projector. Once they got it figured out, all that was left was to wait and hear Lamont’s response.
“We loaded them up with T-shirts, frisbees, all kinds of free stuff to say congratulations,” said Lindquist. “The place went nuts.”
Lindquist has said the drive-in would be delighted to have the couple hold their marriage at its facility, but Tomson said that decision will be up to Lamont, as it’s her first marriage (Tomson has been married before).
One thing is for certain…
“We will be getting married on July 2,” said Tomson.