A Legacy of Love

For these newlywed members, the WAC means family

By Mae Jacobson, Associate Editor  |  Photos by Meghan Klein Schuyler

When Kyle O’Connor first laid eyes on now-wife Ali Ehrig, he was instantly intrigued. They were both attendees of a mutual friend’s birthday party, and although Ali was unavailable at the time, the two remained in the same circle and reconnected a year later on the Fourth of July. “When I met her, I immediately thought she was someone I wanted to get to know,” Kyle says. “I had to wait until she was single before asking her out. It was worth it!”

The couple shared their first date one week later at a summertime Mariners game that Ali calls “the best, and last, first date I will ever have.” From there, the couple fell into a natural rhythm of dinners out, cooking in, and getting to know each other’s friends and families. “Our lives connected in a way that confirmed what we were both feeling: this is something special,” they say.

As their love blossomed through three years, Kyle hatched a proposal plan that took place on the shores of Port Susan at Ali’s family’s seaside cabin on a beautiful September evening. While Ali relaxed on the deck, Kyle went inside under the guise of “getting another beer,” but returned on bended knee, ring in hand. After an emphatic “Yes!” followed quickly by “Can I put it on?” from Ali, the couple was engaged.

Wedding bells

From the start, Ali and Kyle knew they wanted their wedding reception at the WAC. Members themselves, the bride and groom also have multiple family connections to the Club. Ali’s paternal grandfather, Jack Ehrig, served as Chairman of the Board of Governors in 1994, and Kyle’s grandfather and multiple uncles were also longtime members.

The couple’s connection to the WAC infused every aspect of their wedding day—from a flower ceremony in front of Jack Ehrig’s photo on the 12th Floor to being served by catering team members who remembered the couple’s family from years back. “Everyone took extra special care of us,” Ali says.

Both bride and groom took full advantage of all the Club’s offerings before their ceremony at Seattle University’s Chapel of St. Ignatius. Ali started the day surrounded by her bridal party getting ready with hair and makeup from the Spa at the WAC. Kyle enjoyed breakfast in Torchy’s, a relaxing steam room session in Men’s Fitness, and then lunch in the 101 Club, courtesy of Ali’s father, Dick. When the wedding party’s departure time neared, they gathered on the 10th Floor for an emotional first glance and photos overlooking downtown Seattle.

Post-ceremony, the couple shared a quiet moment as husband and wife in the Meisnest Room before joining their guests in the Johnson Lobby Lounge for cocktails. A night of dinner, dancing, and tearful toasts followed in the Crystal Ballroom. “I remember Ali’s dad using a WAC towel to wipe his eyes as he cried during his speech,” Kyle says. “We continue to receive compliments on how great the Club was from all our guests.”

Happily ever after

A year and a half post-wedding, Ali and Kyle live in their newly purchased Kirkland home with a golden retriever puppy. “We’re loving married life and creating a home together,” Ali says. They were also able to sneak in a honeymoon before pandemic travel restrictions went into place, spending 10 days in French Polynesia.

When asked about any advice they have for couples planning a marriage in present-day, Kyle and Ali stress how blessed they feel to have married when they did. “Our hearts break for everyone that had to postpone or change wedding plans because of COVID-19,” they say. “It’s hard, but it’s important to remember why you’re getting married and take solace in your shared love. Everything else will fall into place.”

See photos of Ali and Kyle’s special day at their online gallery.

Reach WAC Magazine Associate Editor Mae Jacobson at mjacobson@wac.net.

As published in the January/February/March 2021 WAC Magazine.

—Posted December 22, 2020

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