For Marah Farage and Mitchell Parker, the city of Grapevine was the perfect middle ground for their courtship. Every pivotal scene in the couple’s love story — the first date, budding romance, the search for a ring, the engagement, the wedding and buying their first home — happened in Grapevine.
“We call it our city of love,” Farage said.
The couple met on the dating app Tinder, but lived nearly an hour apart. Farage in Lakewood Village and Parker in Fort Worth.
Every week during their courtship, they would meet at their halfway point in Grapevine for date nights — so they could see each other after work.
They had their first date at Doughlicious, a dessert shop devoted to cookie dough near Historic Downtown Grapevine, which later became the site of their engagement in the spring of 2020.
“I just said, ‘let’s meet in the middle,‘” Parker recalled. Little did he know that the simple decision would be so central to their story a year and a half later.
In his search for the perfect ring, Parker found himself back in Grapevine at Bermuda Gold and Silver. He had the ring custom made from various pieces of family jewelry at the shop just a few blocks from the site of their first date.
Debi Meek, owner of Bermuda Gold and Silver, was involved in the design of the engagement ring and wedding bands, has kept up with the couple since their engagement and expressed her delight at how the couple’s story centers around the city.
“It’s like all roads lead to Grapevine,” Meek said.
Days after their March 6 engagement, news of the coronavirus and rising case numbers led to Parker’s office shutting down and Farage’s scramble to find a wedding dress before the shops closed.
They chose a reception venue in Grapevine for their September wedding — hoping that, by then, the coronavirus would be a thing of the past.
That is not the case, but they’ve adapted.
Even though less than 50% of their guest list can make the wedding next month, they said they’re excited that visitors will get to experience the city where they fell in love. They’re still working out plans to keep their family and friends safe, but have grappled with the difficulty of hosting a wedding during a pandemic.
“Nobody wants to make anybody feel uncomfortable,” Farage said. “But at the same time, it’s our life, we have to move on to get married.”
“We’re trying to be as understanding as we can,” Parker said. “We appreciate everyone who is willing to come and that’s how we are looking at it, instead of looking at it as being disappointed.”
And after their wedding, they’ll begin their married life in their new home they bought in June, which is of course located in the city that started it all.