Maura O’Connor & Patrick Burchette

Maura O’Connor, 28, works in public relations. Patrick Burchette, 34, is an energy lawyer. They live in Old Town Alexandria.

Wedding date: Aug. 20.

Location: Belle Haven Country Club, Alexandria.

Maura O'Connor, Patrick Burchette and their dogs on their wedding day, August 20, 2011. (Deb Lindsey)

Guests: 190.

How they met: In November 2006, O’Connor went to a surprise party for Burchette’s 30th birthday at Bourbon in Glover Park. Although she didn’t know the guest of honor, a friend whose brother had organized the event persuaded her to go. Once introduced, O’Connor and Burchette began talking, and she bought him a celebratory shot of Patron. Their first date came a few weeks later, during Burchette’s Christmas break from law school.

The proposal: When Burchette asked O’Connor’s father for permission to marry her, he learned that her parents had gotten engaged on Christmas Eve. He decided to follow that tradition. On the morning of Dec. 24 , Burchette and O’Connor went for their usual morning dog walk along the Potomac. But this time Burchette got down on one knee and popped the questionss; O’Connor, who had been busy with holiday preparations, hadn’t suspected a thing.

The wedding: The outdoor cocktail hour featured a bagpiper, a martini bar and a game of cornhole. As a reminder of their first meeting, the couple gave Patron bottles as favors. They cut the cake with a sword that had belonged to Burchette’s late grandfather, a Marine.

The honeymoon: The couple honeymooned in Hawaii, dividing their time between Maui and Kauai. Among the highlights were sunset dinners on the beach, visiting a volcano and taking a helicopter ride over Kaui. On the next-to-last day of vacation, Burchette played golf and hit a hole-in-one. “That was a good omen,” he said.