As someone who has driven the state quite a bit this Summer, I get a little giddy when I find out I get to go somewhere new. This weekend Arielle and I traveled to the end of a two lane road in Central Montana to the tiny town of Winifred. Stephani grew up not far away on her family's farm near Hilger, Montana, another even tinier town. What we found when we got there was an oasis in the middle of the prairie. Main street Winifred has had a face lift recently in the form of a brand new hotel/bowling alley/bar/restaurant, I'd heard about it and I was curious to check it out. Winifred International Suites did not disappoint. Each room had a different theme; Paris, San Fransisco, New York, Shanghai, Ancient Greece, ect. It was pretty awesome and totally unexpected in this little community. After a drive out to the family farm, but were surprised that it too felt like an oasis. Multiple levels of yards, flowers, and landscaping perfectly watered and groomed to host its seventh wedding. Stephani's adoptive parents and sisters were all married in this same backyard and I was so excited to experience one of the weddings for myself.
Stephani and Ben are a dream couple. I met them last Fall when we met up for their engagement session and a couple beers in Red Lodge. It's hard to put into words how well they fit together and how much I enjoyed photographing their happiness. Their wedding day was filled to the brim with love, laughter, and people that love to have a good time. Picture all of their guests dancing under the moon on the dance floor placed between their two old farm houses. A party tent in the yard with twinkle lights and grandmas and aunties rocking grand babies to sleep on the porch while they watched the party go on. It was perfect.
Steph and Ben's wedding included just enough handpicked touches to make it special. A cake, pies, and flowers were contributed by family, a neighbor down the road did the catering, an old friend DJ'd the dance, and Stephani's brother officiated the ceremony. The bridesmaids wore handmade jewelry, floral robes and dresses while the groomsmen chose from a collection of Bolo ties to wear for the occasion.
When it came time for the ceremony, Steph put tiny flowers in her hair and walked down the isle to marry Ben surrounded by so much love. I wish we could do it again. :)
Happiest of Wishes to Steph and Ben! It's been an honor getting to know you. I hope you love married life in Missoula!