By L'Oreal Thompson, The Baltimore Sun
10:50 AM EDT, May 28, 2013
Her story: Megan Ibbotson, 30, grew up in Manassas, Va., and now lives in Waldorf. She is a school counselor. Her father, Peter, was a military veteran and her mother, Joanne, was a school principal. Both of her parents are deceased.
His story: Phil Neforos, 28, grew up in Greenbelt and now lives in Waldorf. He is a probation officer for juvenile offenders. His father, Philip, works for the painters' union and his mother, Yong, works for the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.
Their story: Megan and Phil met in Section 126 at a Washington Redskins preseason game on Aug. 22, 2009. At halftime, Megan, who was wearing a Chris Cooley jersey, asked Phil's brother (a Steelers fan) to take a picture of her and her friends. His brother suggested Megan talk to Phil, who is a Redskins fan and was wearing a Chris Cooley jersey as well.
"I went up to him and said, 'I'm Mrs. Chris Cooley,' " says Megan. "He said, 'I'm Chris, nice to meet you,' and we talked the whole time."
Fifteen minutes later, he asked her on their first date.
The dress: Megan purchased her wedding gown before Phil proposed … and had planned to do so before she even met him. Her mother was dying of ovarian cancer, and Megan wanted her to come with her to pick out her future wedding gown. Megan and her mother selected an ivory satin drop-waist Maggie Sottero gown with simple beading and crystals from Katherine's Bridal in Alexandria, Va.
"The staff gave us a private room, dolled me up in the veil and put earrings on me," says Megan. "It was the first and last time she saw me in my dress because she died three weeks later."
The proposal: On Dec. 24, 2011, Phil proposed to Megan at Carmello's in Old Town Manassas. He'd selected a princess-cut solitaire diamond ring from Kay's with his mother.
"My family always ate Christmas Eve dinner at Carmello's ever since I was a little girl," she says. "Phil does a good job of helping me keep my parents' memories alive."
The venue: About 150 guests attended the reception and ceremony at the Elkridge Furnace Inn in Elkridge.
"My mom was a history minor, and she would have loved the old, rustic look," says Megan.
Bridal accessories: Megan wore peacock feather clips on her cobalt blue peep-toe pumps and later switched into teal TOMS.
"Teal is the color of [the campaign against] ovarian cancer, and I wanted to symbolize my mom through them," says Megan. "I also wore my mom's double-strand pearls, and Phil bought me princess-cut earrings."
Bridesmaids' dresses: The bridesmaids wore knee-length cobalt-blue dresses from Alfred Angelo in Springfield, Va.
Men's apparel: Phil and the groomsmen wore black tuxedos from Men's Wearhouse.
Flowers: Brigid Landers of Mobtown Florals in Baltimore designed the bouquets, boutonnieres and centerpieces using blue and purple hydrangeas, cantaloupe orange "Free Spirit" roses, orange Santana roses, an assortment of tulips and peacock feathers.
"They were the most gorgeous flowers I've ever seen," Megan says.
Touchdown: Jason Hutto, a teacher at Megan's school, designed the table numbers for the couple, which were based on the section numbers at FedEx Field, as well as the place cards. Guests received a ticket from the ticket booth Megan's students designed for her.
Music: Davis Deejays entertained the guests. Megan and Phil's first dance was to "Endless Love" by Lionel Richie. Megan and her brother danced to "You'll Never Walk Alone" by Ray Charles and they later performed a flash mob with the bridal party to "Attack Attack" by Interlude.
Dessert: Ruth and Mike Brannon created the red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting, which featured a custom-made cake topper from Life is But a Dream shop on Etsy that portrayed Megan, Phil and their rescue dogs.
"I always said when I met someone, I wanted it to be a good story," says Megan. "I didn't even know it would be a fairy tale."
Just wedded? Or planning your nuptials? Tell us about it. Email your wedding details and contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org.
More wedding info
For more coverage of bridal trends and wedding-planning adventures, go to baltimoresun.com/weddings.
Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun