Thousands of people turned out for Rockford's Stroll on State event to help kick off the holiday season, but one couple in the crowd took the spirit of the day an extra step.
The decorations were out, the music was playing, and the start of the holiday season was in full force.
"The lighting of the tree and its kind of a magical time of the year," Stroll on State attendee Wes Mathieu said.
It was also a magical time for the 26 year old from Stillman Valley.
"I wanted to do it when they lit up the Christmas tree and they lit it up a lot sooner than I thought it was going to be," Mathieu said.
That didn't stop him. He dropped down to one knee in front of the tree and popped the question.
"I just started bawling," his new fiance Michelle Militello said. "I think I cried all night long."
Mathieu asked his girlfriend of three years to make the life long commitment and marry him.
"I don't think it could have worked out it better than it did," Mathieu said.
Militello said fireworks were going off at the moment he asked.
"I couldn't have ask for a better proposal," Militello said. "It just seemed like a whole dream."
The two met after a mutual friend introduced them.
"He was not really a texter," Militello said. "He liked to call and now a days most people just text."
Mathieu said he knew she was the one.
"I didn't think she liked me at first and I kept trying to pursue her and eventually won her over and I guess you gotta keep trying keep keep trying," Mathieu said.
All that trying led to a finale, set at an event that will now mean more than just the start of the holiday season.
Mathieu lives in Wisconsin and the next step is him finding a job and then a home in Rockford where they met and engaged.