by Pia K. Hansen
A Spokane Chiefs hockey game
During the loud and festive atmosphere at the Spokane Chiefs games, you won't only hear the score called out over the loudspeakers. A lot of people, as it turns out, like to propose marriage to their significant other during the games. Actually, so many would like to do it that the Chiefs have to turn people away on a regular basis.
"We have at least three to four proposals each year that we go through with, and there are many more who ask. We can't do it every time, you know, we may have other commitments like sponsors or what have you, but we try to help out," says Kyle McFarlane, the Chiefs director of sponsorships, and the guy in charge of setting up proposals during the game.
Sometimes things have gone a little overboard, says McFarlane: "A couple of years ago, we had someone actually getting married on the ice, and they had the ceremony and everything, but it took a long time and the coaches weren't too excited about the long break in the middle of the game." He says that as far as he knows, only men have proposed and nobody has ever said no.
"I have not heard of anyone who said 'no,' and I mean, what are the odds of that when everyone is looking? If you are afraid of a 'no,' this is kind of a safe way to do it," says McFarlane. "It is kind of fun. I like to think of myself as the one who makes love happen at the Chiefs games.
"Not too long ago we had a former employee being proposed to. Her fianc & eacute;e called, and he brought 50 or 60 people from her new job down here and on the ice. She thought it was for his birthday," says McFarlane. "We did a live announcement and introduced him, and he got down on his knee and asked her, and she said yes. What's most amazing is that they stuck around for the rest of the game -- I would have gone home, or some place, you know."
Considering the good odds and his ability to make love happen at the Arena, would he ever consider proposing at a game?
"No, I would never do that. I just think proposing is more of a private thing -- I'd never do it in a public spot."