From TikTok assembly to Valentine’s Day Vegas marriage ceremony in days
AMBRIDGE – Gunnar Michels wanted to get married and went to TikTok to look for a future bride.
Ambridge’s Danielle Gross saw Michels’ message and thought, “Why not?” and agreed to be his loving wife.
After some FaceTime chat and their first face-to-face meeting in Pittsburgh, where Delaware County resident Michels officially proposed, the new couple got into Gross’ renovated ambulance and went to a Las Vegas wedding chapel.
If everything goes as planned, they will get married on Valentine’s Day on Sunday and share the photos on TikTok, where they have become a sensation.
So sit back and read about the romance of young love and a whirlwind commercial in the time of TikTok and Covid-19.
For the generations of people who got to know their spouse the old-fashioned way – in a bar, in the office, at a blind date facility, or perhaps in a church group – it may be unusual to find your life partner on TikTok.
Not so much for Gross.
“I mean the only way to meet people is online these days, so I can’t really say I ruled it out,” said Gross, a 2014 Ambridge High Degree.
Big usually goes on TikTok for fun.
“My food consists of around 40 percent animals. Mostly cats,” she says with a laughing emoji. “And lots of mental health stuff too – mostly dark humor, (plus) LGBTQA + videos, thirst traps from all kinds of stunning people, sketch comedy, conspiracy (stuff) … it goes on and on.”
Something about freelance videographer Michels and his TikTok video seeking a woman caught Gross’s attention.
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Gross said it was referring to his willingness to live life as it was intended. “By doing what the hell you want, whenever you want, with whoever you want.”
In an email from Texas Thursday morning when her vehicle pointed toward Nevada, Gross said she had never felt called to marry in the traditional sense.
“That was probably the only way I would get married,” said Gross.
Michels’ TikTok video received a number of other offers from women who said they would marry him, despite being excited about Gross after seeing the TikTok video she posted in response to his offer.
“Hey Gunnar! I’m Danielle! I’m 24, I’m an Aries, and I’m from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania,” it said. “I know I have to be the one to take this crazy adventure with you because nothing in life has ever been this serious to me.
“And I’ve always wanted to get married in a crazy, stupid way in Vegas. Like in a bikini and cowboy hat that Elvis marries, or like riding a roller coaster and getting matching tattoos on the roller coaster.”
“Instead of just flying to Vegas (boring), we could just take a road trip in my ambulance, which I stay in,” continued Gross.
We’ll get to the ambulance in a minute, but the couple met first.
On a bent knee
Shortly after their first video encounter, Michels Gross wrote a message and they agreed to FaceTime.
“I think we should break some social norms because we’re only here for a short time in life,” she wrote to him.
The conversation and subsequent chats went well, so Michels decided to go to western Pennsylvania to see her.
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He didn’t tell her in advance that he was coming.
“I basically had no warning that he was coming, so I had to mentally prepare and change my schedule for the day, which was originally going to be frugal with my boyfriend and painting some jeans that we can find there,” said Large. “And living with fear makes it a little difficult to change quickly. But yeah, it definitely went well. “
With a view of Mount Washington, Michels, in a suit and tie and roses, bent down on one knee and asked the question. Gross said: “Yes!”
“He was super cute,” she said.
Of course, they shared the moment with their growing audience on TikTok.
“‘I’m getting married! Meet my beautiful fiancée,” wrote Michels.
They went to eat at Fatheads on the South Side of Pittsburgh, where Michels accepted the offer to take her retrofitted old ambulance to Vegas.
“I’ve wanted to join the ‘vanlife movement’ for years,” said Gross. “And I could never really get my parents on the idea because I was a young, single woman and definitely needed their help if I was going to do it. After dreaming about it for a long time, my brother jumped on the train and bought a short one School bus. They rebuilt it and it has probably lived there for about two years. After my parents saw that it was indeed doable and safe, they also got on to help me. And of course I had to take my brother’s bus by ambulance Remove. “
Driving across the country on TikTok two weeks after the meeting was unforgettable.
“As of this writing, we are almost in Dallas,” she said via email. “The first night was freezing cold as expected. I tried to warn Gunnar how cold it can be here, but he wasn’t prepared. But we’ll find out night after night,” she said.
Have you talked to all this time about future plans, such as where you will live?
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“Well, the goal of all this gimmick was to live spontaneously and make real connections with other people. So basically I have no idea,” said Gross. “But I plan to live in the ambulance again for a while.”
As a former bartender and waitress at Dive Bar & Grille in Wexford and the Italian restaurant on Monte Cello in Cranberry, she now lists her Facebook job status as “retired”.
Are your parents excited or worried?
“My family knew that this would be the only way I would get married, so I’d say they’re more excited,” Gross said. “I would say that wasn’t exactly shocking to me. My mom keeps telling me to post more TikToks and updates now that I’m gone.”
What kind of wedding chapel in Vegas have you booked?
“To be honest, you just have to wait and see!”
Follow her adventures on TikTok at @daniiiellelele
Scott Tady is the local entertainment reporter for The Beaver County Times and Ellwood City Ledger. He can be easily reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @scotttady