Annual trips to the Columbus Zoo's Wildlights inspired Kofi to light up the night with his proposal to Jenna.

Annual trips to the Columbus Zoo's Wildlights inspired Kofi to light up the night with his proposal to Jenna.

No one is allowed to touch the light switches at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium during Wildlights. Kofi Antwiagyei was the exception.

"I just froze, waiting for the whole zoo to shut down or something," says Kofi's then-girlfriend, Jenna, who was stunned when Kofi wondered aloud what the switch was and then brazenly flipped it. "Then I turned around and saw it."

There, in looping white lights, were four simple words: Will you marry me?

"I'd never been so surprised-ever," Jenna says. "I'm pretty sure I said, 'Are you serious?' I just couldn't believe it."

"By the time she turned back around, I was on my knee with the ring," says Kofi, who had pre-planned the proposal with the zoo's events manager.

To add to the jaw-dropping surprise, Kofi, who teaches at Sells Middle School in Dublin along with Jenna, also arranged for a coworker to be waiting nearby to photograph the big moment.

"She jumped out of the bushes and started going click-click-click, paparazzi style," Kofi says.

And then, once Jenna recovered from the initial shock of the proposal, Kofi guided her into the aquarium where the rest of her family-and one other special guest-were waiting to congratulate them.

"Another coworker was scuba Santa that night," he says. "So, I asked him if there was any way he could open up a sign for us under the water."

Sure enough, when the couple arrived, they were directed to the glass as scuba Santa began his dive.

"He unwrapped the poster, we got a quick picture and then the sign disintegrated," Jenna laughs.

The Antwiagyeis even got to share their big moment with some of their students, who visited the zoo that evening, too.

"I'm surprised the whole day went without a hitch, because so many people knew about it," Kofi says.

Kofi says he picked the zoo as his proposal site because he and Jenna went on one of their first dates to see the holiday lights display, and Jenna's family made an annual trip to see the lights together, too. It was the perfect decoy.

"When I heard the date 12/12/12 was coming up, I thought, 'I'm not going to waste this,' " he says.

The couple wed on Dec. 14, 2013.

"We almost waited until 2014 to get married so it would be 12/13/14, but that was too long," Jenna notes.

The Antwiagyeis still visit the Wildlights annually and have even returned to the scene of their proposal and flipped that light switch to see if it still works. (It did.)

"I've always loved the zoo," Jenna says. "I've been going there ever since I was a baby. So, it's one more memory to have there on top of everything else."