Mario (he/him) and Sam (he/him) met at their local gay bar in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. “After locking eyes under the disco ball, we knew something magical was there,” Mario says. “We went on multiple amazing dates, took our first long trip together and introduced each other to our families.”

The rest of their story is one of a whirlwind romance and happy accidents. On Valentine’s Day in 2021, their area of Oklahoma was expecting its biggest snowstorm ever. What was expected to be a weekend of being locked in Sam’s house together ended up being an entire week, and Mario never really left. The couple officially moved in together that September, along with their cats, Dolly Pawton and Frida Katlo.

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Sam proposed at the Salt Plains State Park in Oklahoma, which is a beautiful and stark landscape featuring salt leftover from an ocean that covered the land in prehistoric times. Capitalizing on the barren, snow-like aesthetic of the park, Sam set up the photoshoot, telling Mario that they were taking holiday card pictures in complementary black-and-white outfits. What was supposed to be a regular photo session ended up being a surprise proposal and engagement portraits.

The gay couple’s fall wedding will feature a drag officiant and local drag queens performing at the reception. “We are still writing our story,” Sam says, “and excited to see what is in store for us in the future.” The Equally Wed heart is a trademark of Palladino Publishing, LLC.

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Photographer: Shotz By Dylan
Location: Salt Plains State Park

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