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Jacki & Kurt

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Wedding Party

Meet our best pals who will be walking down the aisle with us on our wedding day!

Brad Allen

Best Man

The year was 2009. Kurt, a sophomore at Cal State Long Beach and a bass vocalist, and Brad, a tenor transfer from Riverside Community College, found themselves serendipitously singing together in a quartet together for the Choral department’s annual “Winterfest.” While this is arguably where the friendship between the two began, it really took off once Brad came back from a quick trip to Germany. While some may call it a Mormon missionary trip, he may prefer to call it an all expenses paid trip abroad. Either way, it was thankfully short-lived and by 2011, Brad was back stateside and the two became best friends in short order. From the early days of hanging out at his Gram’s house and heading out to Murrieta to visit his family, to eventually living together in Seal Beach (a place they have off-and-on lived at for more than 8 years) the memories they’ve shared have been innumerable. Boys trips to San Francisco, Portland, Santa Cruz, Tucson, Tijuana, Ensenada, and a European “backpacking” trip for the better part of a month together. Caroling with his family, building projects/landscaping at multiple houses, camping/backpacking, brewing beer together, the list goes on and on and on. In November 2018, Kurt had the honor of officiating Brad’s wedding to his wife Jeannine. A wedding without him as best man was never an option.

Kelsey Madden

Maid of Honor

Kelsey and Jacki first met in 3rd grade as members of the same 4-H club! Though they remained friends through the years, it wasn't until college, when they went to the same school (Cal Poly SLO), were in the same major (Animal Science) and spent most of their extracurricular time in the same club (Thoroughbred Enterprise) that they essentially became inseparable (being mistaken as twins more than once!). Several years of taming yearlings, themed dinners while watching America's Next Top Model, and striving for excellence at the beer pong table (Go Team Ferocia Coutura!) brought them very close. Several years later they are still the best of friends, enjoy horses together, but have upgraded the drink quality :) FUN FACT: Kelsey regularly gets wordle in 2 guesses. It is infuriating to play against her, but I suppose that's the downside of having such a clever pal!

Dave Krueger

Best Man

Opening day at Ballast Point Long Beach (BPLB), where Kurt had found a job bartending in 2016, Davey was practically customer number one. Weeks and months went by where the employees at Ballast (including Kurt) stopped charging Davey and management decided that if he was gonna be there anyway (and we weren’t charging him anymore), they might as well just hire him. In the very early days of BPLB, a group of illustrious gentlemen that worked there began meeting once a week to discuss the finer things in life. These “Manday-Mondays,” where the whole idea of which boiled down to cooking the largest piece of meat one could find at the supermarket, is where Kurt really got to know Davey. Whenever their weekends or even single days off aligned they were off on another adventure. From Austin to Phoenix and from Ensenada to San Francisco the open road called. A lot of these adventures also circled around one of their common interests, craft beer and finding new breweries (their current count is 219 breweries). These adventures led to a lot more than beer though. From joining in on one of Davey and his now wife’s first dates, to being best man at their wedding, to being godfather to their first born baby (Rory Brian Krueger), the adventure continues on. Rory couldn’t ask for a better father, and I couldn’t ask for a better best man.

Amanda Packard

Maid of Honor

Amanda and Jacki have been friends since childhood. Sometime freshman year in high school, as members of the same girl scout troop at a sleepover, they bonded over the fact that they had all the same interests, the same sense of humor and appreciated the same snacks. They have been best friends ever since! Over the years they have traveled a lot together, most notably climbing to the top of a Swiss Alp for sunrise only to rush off the mountain due to a torrential storm, and went on a horse pack trip through the Canadian wilderness together. They continue to bond over their shared love of animals (and dogs who are also best friends), the outdoors, trashy reality TV, strategy board games, and cooking any meal that includes garlic and burrata. FUN FACT: The license plate on Amanda's high school car was I <3LOTR. She was ahead of the times.

Nate Bailey

Groomsman

In 2009, Nate transferred from Riverside Community College to Cal State Long Beach, where Kurt was hard(ly) at work in his sophomore year of college. While they knew each from the music/choral program at CSULB, and even toured together in Europe in 2010, it wasn’t until later after another choral trip to Chicago in 2011 when they started to hang out outside of school. Hanging out with another common friend, Brad, they became fast friends. From house parties at one of Nate’s many college houses, to brewing beer in Nate’s kitchen, to a few epic road trip adventures with Brad, their friendship grew. Once Kurt moved down the road from Nate an average hangout between the two often entailed a run or bike, followed by a bomber or two of beer and a thick steak to completely negate the exercise (A salad or two may have been involved, but it’s hard to remember at this point). What is sure is that a quality 80s/90s action or B movie would most certainly follow (think Hunt for Red October, Bloodsport, or Mortal Kombat). Post college, Nate and Kurt supported each other as each roughed the wilds of Tinder and online dating. I am however happy to report from that period, that in November 2019, Kurt was able to celebrate with Nate and his now wife Tess at their wedding as a groomsman. Since then Kurt has happily been stealing Nate away from his wife while the two attempt to golf.

Melinda Hespen

Bridesmaid

Melinda and Jacki (along with Suzy) were all assigned to the same suite Freshman year of College. They got along so well that they lived together all four years because they are the "three best friends that anyone could have!" Jacki, Melinda & John (Melinda's Partner) have had some epic adventures in recent years, including a week driving around and camping in Norway (including sleeping on the bank of an epic fjord) and three weeks in a camper van driving from the north island to the south island of New Zealand (and capping off this trip with a wild hike to a hut that overlooking a glacier). FUN FACT: Melinda is the Vice President of her HOA!

Jonny Alvarado

Groomsman

In 2013 (during Kurt’s “super senior” year at CSULB), Jonny transferred into the Cal State Long Beach music department from Ventura College. While Kurt knew of Jonny through the program, by 2014 Brad stepped in again with another “rad guy” that Kurt should probably hang out with. Once again, he was right. With a passion for music, a good cup of coffee, craft beer, fine wine, travel, and nowadays a decent game of golf, Jonny fit in the foursome like he was always there. Whatever the adventure, from snowy cabin trips to Mexico and San Diego bachelor trips, Jonny’s game. In 2022 Jonny was Kurt’s travel partner as they met up with Brad and Jeannine amid their summer UK adventure for some fine whisky on the island of Islay, Scotland. Even with Kurt’s moving to Mission Viejo, Jonny has found time to stop by for the occasional run, backyard bbq, or late night pint. As Jonny has dog sat for Jacki & Kurt a couple times, he has won the honor of best friend to Sierra as well. No one is happier for his arrival in Mission Viejo than she is. Kurt has been a groomsman with Jonny at both Nate and Brad’s weddings and he couldn’t be more excited to have him as one at his own.

Leah Jones

Bridesmaid

Leah and Jacki met at Cal Poly as members of the Thoroughbred enterprise. It was really after college though, when Leah moved to Southern California that they became close. Some of Jacki's favorite memories with Leah include a trip around Ireland, barely making it home from Kentucky, and an iconic trip to the UK where Leah may have broken some laws at Buckingham Palace. To this day Leah remains Jacki's most compatible friend in terms of general weirdness, predisposition to falling asleep at inappropriate times, being frequently afflicted with seasonal allergies, and an affinity for carbohydrates. FUN FACT: She may not know all the lyrics, but this girl loves music from the late 90's - 2000's. She and Jacki have seen Third Eye Blind at least 3 times together! Also, never get between Leah and a bread basket.

Kris Roudebush

Officiant

Kris is Kurt's eldest sister, and perfectly embodies the eldest sibling role. She is full of wisdom, encouragement and fun. Kris and Kurt have had many years of bonding over their shared love of the outdoors, adventure, and a crisp pint. Jacki has loved joining in on an adventure weekend in recent years with Kris (sometimes without Kurt). Kris, Kurt & Jacki had a memorable a trip to Kings River where Sierra got to tag along as well, and there was a lot of charades, midnight bocce, and river chilling. Kris is the perfect person to officiate their marriage and help to guide them into this exciting next phase of life.

Suzy Pasternak

Bridesmaid

Suzy and Jacki (along with Melinda) were all assigned to the same suite Freshman year of College. They got along so well that they lived together all four years because they are the "three best friends that anyone could have!" Suzy has always been an easy going, always down for an adventure kind of friend. She was also the catalyst of sleeping-bag-gate 2010! On a back packing trip with Melinda & Jacki, Suzy tripped causing her sleeping bag to become disengaged from her pack and if flew off a cliff never to be seen again. The ladies were too far on the trail to make it back out so they zipped together two mummy bags and the three of them squeezed in for a very cozy night of sleep. FUN FACT: Suzy once convinced Jacki that everyone dresses up as animals for Zoo Brew (a beer festival at the Santa Barbara Zoo). EVERYONE does not, but the two of them dressed up as zebras and ran around the festival.

Jordan Gustafson

Flower Girl

Jordan is Jacki's little cousin and the perfect hype girl ready to deck the aisle with petals and cheer us on as we tie the knot.

Kate Sales

Bridesmaid

Katie and Jacki met freshman year of high school in Latin class (which they didn't really enjoy), but were lucky enough to get to take 4 years of art and painting together (which they adored). Over the years they have enjoyed concerts, bourbon, and exploring the outdoors (especially with their dogs). Katie has a vast range of skills, and a great friend who always has your back. She is the ultimate hostess, the getaway car driver, and the fiercest pickleball opponent. FUN FACT: Though many people are either a cook or a baker, this girl is both. In fact, we all still talk about the epic chocolate and peanut butter cake she baked for Jacki's MBA graduation.

Sierra

Pup of Honor

This day couldn't be complete without our girl! Though she would behave like someone about to get sent home early in a taxi at the actual wedding, she will be celebrating with us in spirit. She deserves a shoutout here because she is the very best girl and we love her so much. FUN FACT: No one is more excited to see Jacki & Kurt get married than Sierra. Kurt is her favorite human on the planet and she is so excited that he is about to officially become her dad.