Pick me!

20 Charlottesville singles searching for The One

Not to be a total downer, but isn’t looking for love a little like playing a lifelong game of musical chairs? You search and you search, but every trip around the proverbial circle yields fewer and fewer options until, eventually, you either find a seat or find that all the seats have been taken, amirite? We get it. Which is why, with this year’s Love Issue, we asked our readers to nominate the best catch they know (or themselves, because who can judge, really, when even lobsters are mistaken to mate for life and we’re all just trying to find the one person who sets our hearts aflame, OKAY?). We promised that, if their nominees were game, we’d print their answers to our Q&A in the paper. The results, on page 18, are 20 of the area’s bravest bachelors and bachelorettes. Plus, we take an inside look at a new matchmaking service, meet a couple whose romance rekindled in these very pages and, for good measure, hear a few terrible date stories, because love’s all fun and games until someone cooks a lamb chop for a vegetarian.

If one of the bachelors or bachelorettes below strikes your fancy, e-mail singles@c-ville.com and we’ll put you in touch! 

Clockwise from top left: Aaron Cross, Amanda Beckwith, Chris Collins, Ashley Rose Walton

Oh, for the love!

Aaron Cross

Past 60, geologist

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Celebrity crush: Tina Fey. And, yeah, Sarah Silverman.

Are you a believer? I have beliefs. I believe I’ll have another shot of tequila.

Word or phrase you hate: “Well, Mr. Cross, I’ve got good news and bad news.”

Fave Charlottesville haunt: Maya, of course.

The glass is… on its way to becoming empty. Afterwards, Ted will fill it.

Beatles or Stones? The Yardbirds!

Hidden talent: I am an accomplished washboard player.

Talent you wish you had: I’d like to be able to play a tune on the banjo, maybe a sad song about coal mining.

Dream job: Geologist isn’t too bad.

Next travel destination: ¡Cuba!

Dog or cat person? I’m fond of cats who behave like dogs.

Movie title that describes you: The Gods Must Be Crazy.

Amanda Beckwith

29, guest experience manager at a local distillery

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? I’d like to think so.

Celebrity crush: Steve McQueen (I’ve loved that man since I was 10 years old).

Deal-breakers: Anyone who doesn’t like or is cruel to animals.

Are you a believer? I’d describe myself as someone with critical, yet open-minded faith.

Word or phrase you hate: I really dislike words that demean people. Also, “bae” has got to bite the dust soon.

Personal theme song: Today? “Soul Meets Body” by Death Cab for Cutie.

Go-to snack food: Anything chocolate.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: Oh, so many! Lost Saint and Violet Crown for sure.

Beer, coffee or tea? You meant to include whiskey, right? I love it all—wine, too.

Beatles or Stones? The Beatles.

Hidden talent: I have this odd thing for memorizing random poetry.

Talent you wish you had: Picking up languages quickly.

Dream job: Besides the one I have now? Running a B&B in Napa Valley where all profits go to the dog rescue I’d run out back.

Next travel destination: PEI, Canada.

Last thing you read: Silver Screen Fiend by Patton Oswalt.

Chris Collins

32, ACAC downtown membership sales and fitness instructor

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Celebrity crush: 1980s Elisabeth Shue (Cocktail, Karate Kid, Adventures in Babysitting).

Best habit: Extremely routine-oriented, but attending Mass and breakfast with my dad every Friday is my best.

Go-to snack food: Fruit—filling and quick energy. My go-to dessert, too.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: ACAC…too obvious?

The glass is… overflowing.

Most-used hashtag: #letsgoteam

Hidden talent: I’m excellent on a tandem bicycle.

Talent you wish you had: Singing—but it doesn’t stop me from doing it anyway.

Dream job: Host of “The Bachelor.”

Your worst date in five words: Off-putting foot massage during dinner.

Your best date in five words: Tropical, music, swimming, biking, sailing.

Next travel destination: Las Vegas for WCC college basketball tournament.

Dog or cat person? Dogs—but hold the shedding and drool.

Last thing you read: Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari. I’d consider myself a dating expert now.

Movie title that describes you: It’s a Wonderful Life.

Ashley Rose Walton

31, art director

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? Yes, but I’m now realizing love in a deeper, more fuller way.

Celebrity crush: Hello, Paul Rudd.

On your 2017 bucket list: Gallivant on an international adventure, name and claim my favorite whiskey and take my nieces and nephews on more auntie dates.

Worst habit: Slamming the snooze button eight times too many, thinking dry shampoo is a shower replacement and procrastination.

Best habit: Making ginger tea and reading most nights in bed, being habitually spontaneous, listening first.

Deal-breakers: Lack of curiosity, someone who freezes and walks away, a Mister Serious Pants with an inability to be playful.

Are you a believer? Yas.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: Lampo, C&O bar and Mas.

The glass is… filled with black coffee.

Hidden talent: Accidentally rewording idioms, i.e. “I’m on the side of my chair” or “You’re a gem in the forest.”

Talent you wish you had: I wish I could play the French horn.

Dream job: Something that mixes urbanism + architecture + public space + people + listening.

Next travel destination: Technically, Seattle. Dreaming of Istanbul.

Dog or cat person? Lurv them both, but tend towards a kitty cuddle-fest.

Ideal Saturday morning: Nestled in an arm chair, black coffee in the press, bare feet, cozy sweatshirt, book.

Last thing you read: An article on restoring public education in The Atlantic.

Whitney Wigton’s new matchmaking company, Whit’s End, takes the hard work out of finding love. Photo: Keith Alan Sprouse
Whitney Wigton’s new matchmaking company, Whit’s End, takes the hard work out of finding love. Photo: Keith Alan Sprouse

Catch me a catch

Whitney Wigton is looking for love—for you

Dating sucks.

Sure, there are some fun and exciting things about it—making out with a new squeeze in a bookshop doorway during a late-night rainstorm, or going out on a date to Buffalo Wild Wings with a guy who says to you, “I used to date a stripper. How does that make you feel?” while his buddy listens in from the next booth over.

And with the advent of online dating and dating apps like Tinder, Bumble, Hinge, Coffee Meets Bagel and others, we have more ways to find love than ever before. (That is, if you want lasting love. Not everyone does, and that’s cool, too.) But Charlottesville now has its own aspiring matchmaker.

For a one-time $75 consulting fee, Whitney Wigton of Whit’s End will do all the hard work of dating for you. Wigton, a former corporate recruiter with years of experience, touts her matchmaking service as “the new, old-school alternative for singles in Charlottesville.”

Here’s how it works: Wigton talks with potential clients over the phone, then meets them in person to get a feel for a client’s personality and what they’re looking for in life and love. She adds them to her pool of clients and, hopefully, makes a match. Wigton says that right now, her pool is still small—she started just a few months ago—but it’s growing. And, she adds, Whit’s End is open to people of all genders and sexualities. “I believe everyone has a match,” she says.

When she’s ready to set two people up, she’ll let both people know that she has a match for them. If they agree to a date, she sets up a time and place for them to meet and shares first names only—no opportunities for Googling or Facebook stalking—and some physical identifier like “Eva will be carrying a yellow purse.”

If you go on the date and it’s a dud, she’ll do the dirty work for you, telling them “Eva wasn’t the right match,” and then try to get the bottom of why that coupling wasn’t quite right before setting you up again.

I recently met with Wigton, who is single herself (and knows first-hand the struggles of dating in a small city), over a beer at Kardinal Hall for an initial consultation. 

“You only think you know everybody in this town,” she told me. Fair point.

She tossed question after question my way: How old are you? (29.) What do you do for work? (I write.) Why are you single? (Hell if I know.) Do you cook? (Yes. And I bake.) What are you currently reading? (White Teeth by Zadie Smith.) What are you listening to? (Everything except modern country.) What matters more: religion or politics? (Politics, definitely. I’m liberal, by the way.) What’s your type? (Nerdy-cool musicians with kind hearts, sharp wits and soft sweaters. I’m only half-joking.)

“That’s awfully specific,” Wigton noted. True, but it could apply to many people, I told her, raising an eyebrow.

“Are you thinking of a particular person when you say that?” she asked. She was on to me.

She asked a few more questions before putting down her clipboard and giving me some tough love. She deduced that I’m not currently dating anyone because I’m hung up on soft-sweater man, then said that she wouldn’t set me up with anyone else until I knew where I stood with him, because it’s not fair to me or to the person I’d be going out with. (Props, Whitney. I trust you.)

She gave me two weeks to let soft-sweater man know how I feel. But in some strange twist of fate, it was decided for me less than 24 hours later: A friend let me know that she and soft-sweater man are mutually interested in each other. She wanted confirmation that, if she pursued it, we’d all still be friends.

Yes, of course we will be. It stings, but I’ll put on my big girl pants and deal with it.

“I know where I stand,” I texted Wigton.

“Which is where?”

“Just friends.”

“Don’t give up hope. Now it’s my turn to find someone for you,” Wigton texted back with the nerd face emoji. She doesn’t have anyone for me just yet, but she’ll be in touch when she does. “You never know,” she assures me. It’s true: I don’t know.

I often joke to my mom, my cousins and my friends that I’m going to die alone. I say it because I want people to tell me that’s not true, that of course I will find someone to share life with. I need them to tell me because some days, I cannot convince myself.

“You don’t know that,” they all say. There’s equal—and abundant—hope and fear in not knowing, and unfortunately, this is not a rom-com flick. There’s no fast-forward button to press, no Rotten Tomatoes review or IMDB page full of plot spoilers in this story about trying to find love in a small town. I just have to wait and see.—Eva Love

Clockwise from top left: Chris Kirtley, Emma Terry, Jeff M., Howard Mitchell

Chris Kirtley

32, owner of Southern HosPETality, LLC (professional dog training and boarding)

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Any kids? About 100—mostly four-legged, some two-legged (and feathered).

On your 2017 bucket list: Nashville karaoke.

Worst habit: I’m 15 minutes late to everything. Okay…30.

Are you a believer? Yes.

Word or phrase you hate: “Get over it.”

Personal theme song: “Smiling” by Tim McGraw.

Go-to snack food: Guac and chips.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: The Fitzroy.

The glass is… made of glass.

Most-used hashtag: #adoptdontshop

Beer, coffee or tea? Dark beer.

Beatles or Stones? Led Zeppelin.

Hidden talent: I’m really good at impersonating accents.

Dream job: Rock star. Seriously.

Favorite emoji: Winking face.

Your worst date in five words: Tinder matched with my sister.

Next travel destination: Iceland, I hope.

Last thing you read: Monte Roberts’ biography.

Movie title that describes you: Clueless.

Emma Terry

37, programs and communication manager for UVA Arts

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? Yes.

Celebrity crush: Vincent D’Onofrio from his “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” days.

Worst habit: I have an affinity for Investigation Discovery TV.

Best habit: I send a postcard a day!

Deal-breakers: If you voted for Trump.

Word or phrase you hate: “It is what it is.”

Go-to snack food: Pickles, tomatoes and Babybel cheese.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: The Fralin Museum of Art.

The glass is… full of bubbles.

Most-used hashtag: #watertowers

Beer, coffee or tea? Tea, unless you are offering champagne, then it is always champagne.

Dream job: To design bridges, although I am not sure I’d ever go back to school for it.

Favorite emoji: The winking face.

Next travel destination: Iceland, and soon if I can help it.

Dog or cat person? I have two black cats, so they have each other when I’m off adventuring.

Ideal Saturday morning: Going to the farm to pick up my CSA and making a veggie brunch for my loves.

Last thing you read: The Tell-Tale Brain by V.S. Ramachandran.

Movie title that describes you: True Romance.

Jeff M.

25, music stuff at Red Light Management

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Celebrity crush: Aubrey Plaza or Michelle Obama. Not very similar but equally likable.

Best habit: I try to look at the positives in a situation. And I drink a lot of water.

Deal-breakers: Trump fans.

Are you a believer? Not really but believe whatever makes you happy. YOLO.

Word or phrase you hate: “Kill me now.”

Personal theme song: “Coffee” by Sylvan Esso.

The glass is… full.

Most-used hashtag: #fromwhereidrone

Beer, coffee or tea? Beer, coffee and tea.

Beatles or Stones? “Black Beatles” by Rae Sremmurd.

Hidden talent: Drone photography.

Dream job: Pretty happy with my current job, but getting paid to travel the world and take pictures would be great, too.

Next travel destination: Mexico City in February.

Ideal Saturday morning: Coffee, a Bodo’s everything bagel with bacon and butter and a hike.

Last thing you read: Happy City: Transforming Our Lives Through Urban Design by Charles Montgomery.

Movie title that describes you: Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping.

Howard Mitchell

65, owner of public relations/public affairs consulting group Communiqué; substitute
teacher; occasional travel writer

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Any kids? Yes, three: a daughter and two sons, all on their own. My daughter lives in The Netherlands and one of my two sons lives in the Los Angeles area and the other one lives in Cincinnati.

Ever been in love? Of course. Several times.

Celebrity crush: Diane Lane, Charlize Theron, Jan Crawford (CBS News).

Are you a believer? Yes. I’m a practicing Roman Catholic. I’ll date people of other faiths or no faith.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: I’m new in town, so there might be a favorite place I haven’t discovered yet. But you’ll often find me at Common-wealth Restaurant & Skybar, The Fitzroy, Miller’s, Sedona Taphouse, Beer Run, Vivace or Pro Re Nata Brewery.

The glass is… half-full, of course!

Beatles or Stones? Beatles, by a nose.

Hidden talent: Trivia. I was on my high school’s team for a weekly televised trivia competition, and I can still remember oddball facts.

Talent you wish you had: Speak better French/learn another language/play bass guitar.

Next travel destination: Los Angeles.

Last thing I read: I just finished Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates by Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger. I’m now reading Valiant Ambition: George Washington, Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution by Nathaniel Philbrick. (Can you tell I was a history major at UVA?)

Movie titles that describes you: A Man for All Seasons.

Clockwise from top left: Jeff Rothstein, Lisa Winn, Matthew Stoker, Madeleine Sandridge

Jeff Rothstein

34, attorney

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? Yes.

Best habit: Going to the gym.

Deal-breakers: Drugs.

Are you a believer? I believe in a thing called love!

Word or phrase you hate: “Yummy.”

Personal theme song: “Footloose” by Kenny Loggins.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: Commonwealth Restaurant & Skybar.

The glass is… about to be filled with whiskey!

Beer, coffee or tea? Beer.

Beatles or Stones? Beatles.

Hidden talent: Drumming ’90s songs.

Talent you wish you had: NFL throwing arm.

Dream job: Rock star.

Favorite emoji: Martini glass.

Your worst date in five words: Tried to convert me religiously.

Next travel destination: Sweden.

Last thing you read: Blue Latitudes: Boldly Going Where Captain Cook Has Gone Before by Tony Horwitz.

Lisa Winn

35, accounting, human resources and payroll specialist

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Any kids? Two girls (13 and 14).

Ever been in love? Yes.

Celebrity crush: Channing Tatum and Ryan Kerrigan.

Deal-breakers: Cheaters, liars, those that play games, man-child (Peter Pan syndrome).

Are you a believer? Yes. Southern Baptist.

Go-to snack food: Reese’s Pieces Big Cup peanut butter cups, king size.

The glass is… hopefully not dirty.

Most-used hashtag: #family

Beer, coffee or tea? Cider.

Beatles or Stones? Both—depends on my mood.

Hidden talent: Played in church bell choir.

Talent you wish you had: Bilingual.

Dream job: I have it. I love my job!

Next travel destination: Northern Virginia.

Dog or cat person? Neither—teacup piggy.

Last thing you read: Deceived: Part 3 by Kylie Walker.

Movie title that describes you: As Good As It Gets.

Matthew Stoker

27, pilot

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? I really liked this pizza once.

Celebrity crush: Jewel Staite who plays Kaylee on “Firefly.” Cute as a button.

On your 2017 bucket list: Visit two new countries.

Worst habit: Not putting laundry away immediately.

Deal-breakers: Not a practicing Christian.

Word or phrase you hate: “You aren’t allowed to do that.”

Personal theme song: “The Distance” by Cake.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: Three Notch’d Brewing Company.

Most-used hashtag: #cantstopwontstop

Hidden talent: I can fix most anything.

Talent you wish you had: I wish I could learn languages easily.

Dream job: Pilot.

Favorite emoji: 😛

Ideal Saturday morning: Sleeping in till 10am, then making brunch with lots of friends.

Last thing you read: Perelandra by C.S. Lewis.

Movie title that describes you: Up.

Madeleine Sandridge

23, marketing

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? I thought I was…

On your 2017 bucket list: Ride a Segway, appear on a TV show, learn how to solve a Rubik’s cube.

Worst habit: Probably procrastination, though I can also be so sarcastic that it’s hard to tell if I’m being serious or not, so, sociopathy.

Best habit: Practicing mindfulness.

Deal-breakers: Not having goals.

Are you a believer? Yes, and a Belieber.

Word or phrase you hate: “You know?”

Go-to snack food: Fruit by the Foot.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: Jack Brown’s.

The glass is… overflowing.

Most-used hashtag: #basic

Talent you wish you had: Opera singing.

Dream job: Being a “Big Brother” houseguest.

Favorite emoji: The one where two hands are in the air.

Your worst date in five words: July 6. Way too hot.

Next travel destination: Florida.

Movie title that describes you: The Pursuit of Happyness.

Well, that was awful.

Sometimes the conversation flows for hours. Sometimes you click, but in a friendly way. And, sometimes, you end up hitting your date in the mouth with a putter (accidentally!). The quest for love can take any number of turns. Here, a few readers recall their worst date stories.

“I went on bad blind dates more than once. Worst one? Guy showed up with a very, shall we say, ‘wispy’ ponytail of gray hair. After the meal he plucked one out and flossed his teeth with it. #truestory”Jenée Libby

“He told me in a bragging way that he just remodeled his kitchen and put in 3″ granite countertops. He kept stressing the three inches.” Diana Boeke

“She started talking to another guy while I waited. He was her ex-boyfriend! You’re not supposed to talk about your ex, let alone bring them!” Todd Kasen

“Made new best friends with some other guys playing pool, drank too much and said not to worry since he’d just sleep in his truck.” Kim Marshall King

“Went on first date to putt-putt. I thought I was a golfer and swung the putter so hard it hit him in the mouth and broke some of his teeth. It was awful. I felt so bad, but we never went out again.”—Shelba Suttle

“I said I was vegetarian. He said, ‘Not if I make you these really great organic, free range, local lamb chops for dinner at my place.’” Kimberly MacVaugh

“First date was good but she wouldn’t leave. Been 41 frigging years and she still won’t go.” Freddy Lundmark

“The guy who drank a Super Big Gulp before the date, so I got to spend a lot of time in a McDonald’s parking lot in an idling car while he ran into their bathroom again and again.” Julie Crone

“Junior high boyfriend came with his dad who drove a convertible to take us to Kings Dominion. He shut the door on my finger.” Michelle Maggiore

“She bragged—not confessed—bragged about being an anti-Semite.” Rai Mundinho

Clockwise from top left: Michelle Wherley, PK Ross, Scott Dunn, Samantha Federico

Michelle Wherley

25, paid search analyst

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? Yes.

Celebrity crush: Chris Evans.

On your 2017 bucket list: Finish a half marathon, visit all of the Monticello Wine Trail and complete a few more hikes in Shenandoah.

Deal-breakers: Someone who smokes, lacks ambition, does not get along with my family, is unkind to others and unwilling to try new things.

Word or phrase you hate: “Roll tide.” I am a proud Auburn graduate; War Damn Eagle always.

Personal theme song: “Don’t Stop Me Now” by Queen.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: Carter Mountain and Blenheim Vineyards.

The glass is… empty. More wine, please!

Hidden talent: I have been playing the guitar for over 10 years.

Favorite emoji: 🙂

Your worst date in five words: He brought another girl along.

Next travel destination: Orlando, Florida, to a run a half marathon.

Dream job: To be the next Guy Harvey.

Last thing you read: The Mountain Shadow by Gregory David Roberts.

Movie title that describes you: The Artist.

PK Ross

33, owner/operator of Splendora’s Gelato

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Any kids? One spectacular furbaby, an American bulldog mix named Gypsy.

Ever been in love? Yes.

Celebrity crush: Matthew Gray Gubler, what a dreamy weirdo.

Best habit: Making too much food for parties.

Deal-breakers: Vegans.

Are you a believer? In a thing called love? Yes.

Personal theme song: “Sugar” by Sister Sparrow and the Dirty Birds.

Go-to snack food: Salty food. Legit anything salty, preferably something terrible and odd.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: Downstairs bar at C&O.

Most-used hashtag: #gypstagram (my dog…yeah, I’ll own that).

Hidden talent: Fiber arts, which is the fancy way of saying knitting, crocheting, sewing and embroidery.

Talent you wish you had: Musicality. In the words of my mother, “Singing doesn’t like you.”

Dream job: I’m doing it. Mostly.

Next travel destination: Piemonte, Italy.

Ideal Saturday morning: Walking my dog, making a killer breakfast with mimosas or bloody Marys or beer and, depending on if Manchester United is playing, watching Premier League soccer.

Last thing you read: Rereading Banana Yoshimoto’s Kitchen.

Movie title that describes you: Big Fish.

Scott Dunn

39, writer

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? A few times.

Celebrity crush: Olivia Wilde.

Deal-breakers: Dishonesty.

Are you a believer? I’d say I’m an explorer.

Word or phrase you hate: “Make America Great Again.”

Personal theme song: “A New Wave” by Sleater-Kinney.

Go-to snack food: Dark chocolate.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: Atlas Comics.

The glass is… I ordered coffee, thank you very much.

Most-used hashtag: #happynerd

Beer, coffee or tea? Coffee.

Hidden talent: Why spoil the surprise?

Talent you wish you had:
Literally like every standing balance pose in yoga.

Next travel destination: Alexandria.

Dream job: Working playwright and comic book writer.

Last thing you read: All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr.

Samantha Federico

21, VCU alumni

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? With a few different foods…

Celebrity crush: Dylan O’ Brien from “Teen Wolf.” I’m a season behind, so no spoilers, please!

Worst habit: First instinct: biting my nails. But my worst habit is probably grabbing something to eat when I’m bored.

Deal-breakers: If someone doesn’t know the difference between “there,” “their” and “they’re” and if they voted for Trump.

Word or phrase you hate: “Crusty.”

Personal theme song: “Heaven” by The Walkmen.

Go-to snack food: Cubed cheese, cashews and dried cranberries. And I never liked cubed cheese until a few weeks ago. See, people can change!

The glass is… full of paint pigment because I got a new watercolor set for Christmas.

Your worst date in five words: He met dad…first date.

Your best date in five words: Kings Dominion roller coaster kisses.

Next travel destination: London.

Dog or cat person? Cat.

Ideal Saturday morning: I wake up earlier than usual to go to the farmers market and walk around buying whatever I want because on this ideal Saturday I got my paycheck yesterday and can buy little trinkets, paintings, jams and bread. I go home and write a blog post about my day, while drinking an iced mocha.

Movie title that describes you: Little Miss Sunshine.

Clockwise from top left: Sean Bugg, Stephanie Boutsicaris, Thomas Hendricks, Teresa Harris

Sean Bugg

28, department manager for Old Navy

Sexual orientation: To quote Janice Ian, “This is Damian. He’s almost too gay to function.”

Do you smoke? “…but you can’t really tell.”

Ever been in love? Yes.

Celebrity crush: Zachary Quinto.

Worst habit: I’m #addicted to #hashtags.

Best habit: My zodiac. I’m an Aquarian. I’m fiercely loyal to those I care about.

Word or phrase you hate: “Bae.”

Go-to snack food: Cheez-Its. End of story.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: Before it closed, I used to frequent St. Maarten Cafe. Still the best wings in town.

The glass is… a patriarchal construct that should’ve been smashed decades ago.

Most-used hashtag: #instagay, because it makes me laugh.

Talent you wish you had: Mastery of the Force.

Dream job: I’d very much like to run an arts organization.

Your worst date in five words: Let’s make America great again.

Your best date in five words: Check out this Biden meme.

Next travel destination: For the past two summers, I’ve made a trip out to Taos, New Mexico. It’s sort of a spiritual journey for me, so I’m sure that I’ll end up there again this summer. But I really want to join the Water Protectors in the Dakotas soon. #thefightisntoveryet

Last thing you read: Mary Oliver’s Thirst. C. Russell Price’s Tonight We Fuck the Trailer Park Out of Each Other. Paula McLain’s The Paris Wife. The Huffington Post.

Stephanie Boutsicaris

26, future public defender

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? Yes—twice.

On your 2017 bucket list: Travel to two new continents, adopt a Norwegian elkhound, graduate law school, be a decent human being.

Deal-breakers: Voted for Trump; misogynist.

Are you a believer? Sure?

Word or phrase you hate: “All Lives Matter.”

Go-to snack food: Any kind of dip—queso, spinach, French onion…

Beer, coffee or tea? Beer.

Talent you wish you had: Singing. My dream growing up was to be a Spice Girl, but I think I’ve missed that window.

Dream job: The one I will have next year: being a public defender!

Favorite emoji: The poop emoji (or is that my #2 emoji?).

Your worst date in five words: His friends followed us around.

Your best date in five words: Making out at Saints game.

Next travel destination: Chile.

Dog or cat person? Dog person.

Last thing you read: David Sedaris’ short stories.

Thomas Hendricks

25, art manager at Tom Tom Founders Festival, programs manager at Piedmont Council for the Arts, staff writer at Whurk magazine

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Ever been in love? Yes, though often unrequited.

Celebrity crush: Rachel McAdams.

On your 2017 bucket list: Start a band, try stand-up comedy, write a children’s book (even if it sucks!).

Best habit: My morning smoothie and meditating every day.

Word or phrase you hate: “You know guacamole costs extra, right?”

Personal theme song: “No Scrubs” by TLC.

Fave Charlottesville haunt: The Alley Light.

The glass is… probably sitting on top of my other dirty dishes.

Most-used hashtag: #easybreezybeautiful

Beer, coffee or tea? Green tea with a little honey.

Dream job: Late-night talk show host.

Favorite emoji: All 13 train emojis.

Your worst date in five words: Holocaust documentary, too much curry.

Next travel destination: Cuba or Tokyo.

Dog or cat person? Aren’t foxes the best of both?!

Ideal Saturday morning: Pillow fort, scrambled eggs, soul music, no pants.

Teresa Harris

50, coding specialist

Sexual orientation: Heterosexual

Any kids? Two.

Celebrity crush: Adam Levine.

On your 2017 bucket list: Ride in a hot air balloon.

Deal-breakers: Smoker.

Are you a believer? Yes.

Word or phrase you hate: “It is what it is.”

Go-to snack food: Cheese.

The glass is… a wine glass that should always be full.

Beer, coffee or tea? Beer.

Beatles or Stones? Stones.

Talent you wish you had: Wine-making.

Dream job: I already have it.

Favorite emoji: 🙂

Next travel destination: Puerto Rico.

Ideal Saturday morning: Lounging in bed.

Last thing you read: Dog Medicine: How My Dog Saved Me from Myself by Julie Barton.

Heidi Hutson and Andrew Zapanta will get married Saturday, April 1. Photo: Natalie Krovetz
Heidi Hutson and Andrew Zapanta will get married Saturday, April 1. Photo: Natalie Krovetz

A love for the pages

Last year’s Love Issue introduced readers to 14 local men and women looking for love—from an entrepreneur to a photographer to a TV news anchor. One bachelor in particular, though, caught the eye of someone who needed no introduction.

Andrew Zapanta and Heidi Hutson had met in the early aughts at their local church and became close friends in the intervening years. But something about seeing Zapanta on the pages of the Love Issue turned her feelings less friendly, more romantic.

“I appreciated how Andrew mentioned his love for his family, his enjoyment of international travel and his desire for marriage. These were things that I really valued, too,” Hutson says. “I was also impressed by Andrew’s description of his perfect fit and was surprised by the feeling that he could be describing me.”

She tried to dismiss the feelings, but sent Zapanta a flirty e-mail anyway, posing as his celebrity crush, Jennifer Garner, and got a mutual friend to do the same. “Andrew immediately texted the two of us to say that we owed him drinks for the teasing. I obliged a few days later,” she says.

Cut to early December, after the two had been dating for four months, when Zapanta proposed by the pond at the Boar’s Head Inn with his great-grandmother’s ring.

“I got on one knee and asked her to marry me,” Zapanta says. “She then hugged me and we kissed. Then I said, ‘I didn’t put the ring on your finger!’ Heidi asked, ‘What was your question again?’ Then, she responded with an affirming ‘yes!’” Job well done—for the couple and, let’s be honest, for C-VILLE’s Love Issue.