Nicole and Chad Parker almost didn’t register for the Pensacola Blockparty Wedding.
After friends mentioned it to the couple, Nicole sat down and wrote her and Chad’s love story on a rainy Sunday evening.
“I wrote our story and finally submitted it a few hours before deadline,” Nicole said. “The next few weeks began a whirlwind.”
Only a couple days after the registration closed, while Chad and Nicole were entertaining family, they unexpectedly received a call notifying them that they were finalists.
“I joked with my sister that she was over for our celebration of being selected as a finalist,” Nicole said. “I was completely joking.”
The joke turned out to be true and the very next day, the couple had their photos taken and a few days later the top 10 were announced at the Fish House.
“The two weeks of voting time were crazy and unbelievably busy and exhausting,” Nicole said. “When voting ended we had to wait about a week to find out the results. When the winner was announced we were both in disbelief.”
To win the votes, Nicole and Chad campaigned to friends and family, “and anyone who would listen to us,” Nicole said. They also posted daily updates on Facebook and asked friends to share their story.
“I became votezilla,” she joked. “I ate, slept and breathed votes.”
As determined as they were, Nicole and Chad knew that they would get married no matter what. Their advice to the 2012 finalists is to have fun and relax.
“The most important thing is that you have fun and don’t forget that it really is about starting a life with the person you love,” Nicole said.
Once Nicole and Chad won, the couple not only got to write a new chapter to their love story, but they won a free wedding worth thousands of dollars.
“I am not sure if we would have been able to pull off a wedding like that on our own,” Nicole said. “We were able to work with such amazing people who helped create a wedding tailored to our style.”
Since last year was a first for the Pensacola Blockparty Wedding, Nicole and Chad didn’t know what to expect.
“We had no idea how it was going to turn out,” Nicole said. “It was more than we imagined. The day was perfect and we could not have asked for more.”
They were also slightly apprehensive about getting married on one of the busiest nights on Palafox.
“We had a wonderful ceremony, and you forget that there are so many people there watching you,” Nicole said. “When I walked down the aisle with my dad—something all little girls dream about and something I was not sure would happen after my dad’s motorcycle accident—there was only my dad and Chad at that moment.”
After the campaigning and the wedding comes the best part: marriage. Nicole and Chad have been together a total of 14 years and have enjoyed the married life for the past eight months.
“Once we placed the rings on each other during the ceremony our lives changes. We were forever connected,” Nicole said. “The past eight months have been wonderful and we can not wait to see what the future holds for us and our family.”