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Best friends to spend their lives together

Fri, Jan 11th, 2013
Posted in Preston Features

After dating for more than seven years, Gabby and John will officially tie the knot a few blocks from where they first met. Photo by Studio-A-Photography

Gabby Gatzke and John Kinneberg have known each other since they were little kids in preschool together at Fillmore Central. However, they did not start dating until the summer after graduation.

According to Gabby, the two hung out together in high school and had the same group of friends. Their first date was their senior prom, and it was shortly after that they realized they had something special.

Both of them went off to college that fall; Gabby to Winona State and John to RCTC, but they still spent as much time as possible together.

“We spent a lot of money on phone bills,” shared Gabby. “We would go way over our minutes. Our parents were kind of mad.”

John is the son of SueAnn and Sheldon Kinneberg of Preston, and Gabby is the daughter of John and Elizabeth (Ib) Gatzke of Preston.

In 2012, they moved to Preston, where they now share an apartment. The couple places a lot of importance on family, so it was an easy decision to move where they could be close. Both of them grew up in the Preston area. Gabby works at the Fillmore County Journal, and John works for Mensink Landscaping.

The couple became engaged on December 21, 2011. Gabby had a feeling that something was up that week, as John had made a few unexplained trips to Rochester. That night they had been driving around looking at Christmas lights, and John told her when they got home, she could look for her present. It took her a while to find it, but when she looked at the Christmas tree, she saw an engagement ring around one of the branches.

“I was really surprised at the way he did it,” Gabby said.

The couple knew that they wanted to be together forever for a long time before they made it an official engagement. “He’s more like a best friend,” said Gabby. “We have always done everything together. We have the same friends, and that’s a huge reason that we got together.”

The engagement has been a long one, but it has gone quickly. The date has been set for September 21, 2012, a date which Gabby later realized was the six-year anniversary of the day her grandfather passed away, which makes the day even more special. The couple has had plenty of time to make plans, and this has made it less stressful for them.

“We chose to have a smaller wedding with immediate family and close friends,” explained Gabby. “Then we will have a bigger reception afterward.”

The wedding will take place at St. Columban’s Catholic Church in Preston, with a reception at the Lanesboro Community Center.

Gabby recently bought her wedding dress at David’s Bridal. She and John have decided to stay with local businesses for their other wedding needs, as they really believe in supporting their community. Studio-A Photography in Preston was in charge of their engagement pictures, and will be doing the wedding as well. The flowers will come from Preston Floral, DJ Joe is in charge of the music at the dance, and the catering will go through Chic’s Pizza, which is owned by Gabby’s parents.

According to Gabby, she and John have had equal parts in planning for the big day. They chose the colors purple and lime green because purple is Gabby’s favorite color and lime green is John’s favorite.

Old cars is an interest that John shares with Gabby’s dad, and so they have decided the wedding party will be cruising to Lanesboro in old cars, including her dad’s Cadillac El Dorado.

“I’m anxious for it to get here,” shared Gabby.

The newlyweds will not be honeymooning immediately after the wedding, but will probably travel someplace warm during the winter. They plan to remain in the Preston area, buy a house someday, and eventually fulfill their parents’ wish for grandchildren.

Gabby has some advice for other couples who are planning to be married. “Don’t be afraid to have a longer engagement. It’s actually kind of nice.”

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