So the wife-to-be and I have been super swamped with wedding prep. At this point we’re about a month away from the big day, and while we’re super excited – we’re also super busy.

However, we did get a chance to take a break for a few wedding showers this weekend, celebrating our union early with family. We had done one earlier in the summer with my family, and this time we got to do one with Beth’s family in Illinois. Her family went out of their way to theme the event (something they enjoy doing to all celebrations), which was based on the hit TV series Downton Abbey.

The family rented a hall in an historic hotel in Franklin Park, and decorated the place with old-timey pictures of Beth and I. The set dressing was done extremely well. We didn’t even notice it until the end of the event. Beth’s youngest brother even rented a tux with tails and served us like a butler.

Just about everyone was in 1920s inspired attire, except for me – which wasn’t on purpose. When trying to find my black and white suit, I went to put on my shoes and they felt a little funny. Turns out the bottom of them was destroyed! Not sure how it happened, but the soles looked like shattered glass being held together by good intentions. Since they were my only pair of black dress shoes, my options were:

1) Wear brown shoes with the black and white outfit
2) Change outfits

I went with #2, but unfortunately no longer really fit with the theme. It was still a pretty party, though.

The decorations were top notch (and really fit into the surroundings)

Beth in her 1920s attire

The soon to be happy couple – photo-bombed by the groom’s best man

After the shower ended, the couple (that’s me and Beth) went our separate ways for our respective bachelor / bachelorette parties. Beth went to the city with her girls, and my brother took me out to the suburbs for a night filled with something he wouldn’t tell me about. Thankfully, the guy knew me pretty well and have planned out the perfect evening.

We started off in the hotel room with some top shelf whiskey and snacks (Doritos, Cheetos – my favorite snacks that are terrible for you), and my groomsmen slowly started to trickle in. We were joined by Greg, Russell, Scott, Carl, and Adam. After a few hours of hanging out and playing SNES games in the room, we headed out to our first stop for the night: Medieval Times!

The bachelor party begins!

I had never been to this place before, but it’s always fascinated me and looked like a lot of fun. You get assigned to a section (there are 6 total) that applies to a knight, and you root for your knight while they participate in feats of fancy. All the while you get to eat dinner like a king – with your fingers! Soup, chicken, ribs, bread, a giant potato, a pastry, and chocolate cake greeted us throughout the evening while we hooted and hollered at the knights.

Trevor and his lil’ bro

Our knight was the Black and White knight, who we dubbed Thor because the guy had blonde curly hair and a thin beard. He wasn’t a very good knight, however, missing many of the rings with his lance and they getting taken out by the Green Knight in the first round of the joust.

The announcer introduces the knights

While the night was awesome, our knight sucked….

The group then had to decide who to root for, and quickly picked the other colored knights on our side of the arena. However, they too were quickly wiped out of the competition. The ultimate winner was the red and yellow knight – directly across from us in the area. Suffice it to say, we HATED this guy. And we wanted to see him lose.

After the joust had ended, the king was interrupted by a Barbarian character who wanted to take over the kingdom. The champion (our enemy, the red and yellow knight) had to defend his honor, and a huge battle ensued between the knight and the barbarian. The knight’s squire even entered the battle, and he fared better than our black and white knight – to which we kept chanting that our knight sucked.

As you can imagine, we were cheering for the barbarian to win. However, it was still an awesome time, and a great way to start out our evening.

Our next stop on the bachelor party train was Game Works, where we drank and played games well past the amount of time my brother originally intended for us to be there. We were met by Zeev, and also ran into some friends who were just at the place – June and John. They bought us some shots and we hung out for a bit, and then went on our way slaying zombies with various firearms, playing lots of shooting games, racing until we broke every speed record in the world, and then finishing the night out with some much needed pool.

GameWorks, baby! How nerds celebrate in style!

After we closed GameWorks down, we headed back to the hotel and hung out in the room, drinking and playing SNES until almost 4:30am. All in all, it was the best bachelor party I could have asked for!

Thanks so much to my brother for organizing everything (and for somehow keeping me in the dark – thus pleasantly surprising me – on who would be there, and what we were doing), for the awesome people in my life who were able to attend, and to the amazing people who were there in spirit. You all rock, and I can’t wait to marry Beth! Only about a month to go!