Tessica Glancey and Robert Crampton
Aug. 30, 2010. in Philadelphia
Tess’ interest in politics landed the history major from Newtown, Bucks County, in a weekly seminar at Bates College on American political development. It was her interest in a classmate that made the three-hour class her favorite.
“Seeing Rob, I instantly had a huge crush on him,” she said.
The class had just 10 students, so everyone got to know one another fairly well, said Rob, who grew up in Wilton, Conn. — a suburb of New York City.
“I also had a crush on her, but I didn’t know she had a crush on me,” he said.
They couldn’t believe their luck when they were assigned a group project together. “We spent a lot of late nights in the library working on this project, and that’s where we really got to know each other,” Tess said.
It was spring of 2012, and with their project about to end and her graduation not far behind, Rob invited Tess to an off-campus dive called the Blue Goose. Walking into the popular joint together amounted to a campuswide announcement that they were dating.
They made fun of each other, dared each other to do dumb things like drink pickle juice, and laughed their heads off the entire night. “Walking home, I realized I was completely smitten already,” Tess said.
The two spent as much time together as classes and Rob’s tennis schedule would allow until she graduated and moved to Boston to work on a political campaign, and then moved to Washington, D.C., where she worked as a congressional aide for Sen. Richard Shelby (Ala.) and Rep. Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), who is now the House Minority Leader. She then became press secretary for U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul (Texas).
They spent a year watching for good airline fares and dating long distance. After Rob graduated, he took a job in sales and analytics at Bloomberg, which, while based in New York, had him working in D.C. several days a week.
Tess knew early on that Rob was the one for her. “Rob is the first person outside my family with whom I just felt 100 percent unafraid to unabashedly be myself,” she said. “He is the most hardworking and kind person I’ve met. He is full of compassion and empathy. He makes everyone around him better. Once I met Rob, I never even looked another way.”
Rob said he fell in three different levels of love with Tess. “When we first met, we just hit it off. There was never a dull moment when we were together,” he said. “When our relationship became more serious and we had deeper conversations, I realized my values aligned with Tess’ values. And then once we were dating for a couple of years, I knew we would be good partners together, and I realized I didn’t want to be with anyone else but Tess. I wanted to spend my life with her.”
Easter weekend 2018, Rob seemed uncharacteristically nervous. “Are you proposing to me today?” Tess teased him. The look on his face told her what she meant as a joke was spot-on. “Where are you hiding the ring?” she asked playfully. She made a huge show of going through his coat pockets, a place she never, ever thought he would hide something. Then she felt the outline of a ring box, and started to cry.
“I thought I had ruined his big moment, and I felt so awful!” Tess said.
But Rob wasn’t even a little upset. “Just do me a favor,” he said. "Pretend you never saw that, and go about your day as usual.”
Aside from getting her hair and nails done, she did.
They had lunch with friends Jay and Kelsey at an oyster bar near Capitol Hill — Rob’s way of getting Tess to the right part of the city. Tess didn’t let on that she knew a thing. She didn’t even call her mother.
They ate, said goodbye to their friends, and Rob asked Tess to follow him. He led her to a spot in front of the Capitol where he told her wanted to be with her forever, and asked if she’d marry him. She said yes, and then a series of undiscovered surprises began.
First, Tess noticed someone taking photos. Then she realized the photographer was her good friend, Hannah, who is a cinematographer for NFL Films. Hannah’s boyfriend Mark, who also works at NFL Films, took pictures, too.
Rob suggested a glass of champagne at a nearby restaurant. Waiting there were her parents, Brian and Tess, and her sisters Tara and Erica; his parents, Marcia and David, and his siblings, Meg, Bryan, Catherine, and Caroline, along with Jay and Kelsey and Hannah and Mark.
In fall 2018, Rob, who is now 28, moved to Hanover, N.H., to earn his MBA from Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business. Tess, who is now 30, joined him this past January. She is now an independent communications consultant.
It was so them
Both Tess and Rob were raised Catholic, and they chose to wed at St. John the Evangelist in Philadelphia in a traditional ceremony with a full Mass. “What happens in the church is more important than the reception afterward,” Tess said. “What we were celebrating is creating our union in front of God, before our families, and entering this sacrament together.”
They were married by Father Jason Buck, who has known Tess’ family for years and has gotten to know Rob well, too.
To the underside of her dress, Tess pinned a navy blue ribbon that had been worn by her mother, her grandmother, and her grandmother’s grandmother on their wedding days.
The reception for 150 was held at the Water Works. The couple walked in to Taylor Swift’s “Lover.” They had taken many dance lessons and wowed the crowd with their routine to Elvis Presley’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” the same song that played for Rob’s parents’ first dance as newlyweds.
The tables were decorated with navy and white ginger jars filled with white and green flowers. Tess and her mom had gone on an 18-month quest collecting the jars from Williams Sonoma and flea markets, antique stores and T.J. Maxx.
A whirlwind of getting ready and taking pictures brought Rob to his first still moment, waiting in a chair behind the church altar. “When I was sitting back there, I looked outside that room at the 150 people in the church. That’s when it became real, when it hit me that we were becoming official, that it was all happening,” Rob said.
Dancing to “Can’t Help Falling in Love” with her eyes locked on those of her new husband was fun and poignant, Tess said. “The ceremony was done, and we were kicking off the reception. At the end, a rose petal cannon went off when Rob dipped me, and I was just so happy,” she said.
The budget crunch
A bargain: Getting married on a Friday, especially the Friday before Labor Day, yielded better prices in many categories. “We could have a much more elaborate wedding because it was a Friday, not a Saturday,” Rob said.
The splurge: The 12-piece Jack Faulkner Orchestra. “They had everyone dancing the entire night,” Tess said. “The band bridged the generational gap between our parents and their friends, and our friends from college and graduate school.”
A three-day mini-moon, eating well and relaxing on the beach in Bermuda, to be followed to a to-be-determined destination when schedules allow.
Rob will receive his MBA this spring, then the couple will move to New York City, where he will begin a new job in Bank of America’s investment banking group and she hopes to work in either a political communications or corporate communications role.
Behind the Scenes
Officiant: Father Jason Buck, Archbishop Ryan High School, Philadelphia
Ceremony Venue: St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church, Philadelphia
Reception Venue: Water Works by Cescaphe, Philadelphia
Food: Cescaphe Event Group, Philadelphia
Music: The Jack Faulkner Orchestra, Philadelphia
Photography: Samantha Jay Photography, Media, Pa.
Engagement Photography: Hannah Epstein and Mark Ricci, friends of the bride
Videography: Between Sleep and Awake, Asbury Park, N.J.
Flowers: Beautiful Blooms, Philadelphia
Bride’s attire: Pronovias, New York City
Groom’s attire: Suit Supply, New York City
Transportation: Cescaphe Trolley, Philadelphia
Makeup: Capelli and Trucco, Philadelphia
Invitations: The Papery of Philadelphia