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Wildflowers & Mountains

Brittany & Chad  |  June 11, 2011  |  Durango, Colorado

From the bride:
We had decided early on that we were having a Colorado wedding in my home area of Southwest Colorado. We also wanted a black and white color palette – mainly for the b/w photos and because I was going for a retro look.

Photography by Allison Ragsdale Photography

I wore my moms pearls.I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED my wedding dress, veil and pink shoes!The yellow roses I carried in my bouquet were in remembrance of my grandma. Our preacher had also married my parents 30 years ago.The arch that we were married under was made by my brother.  The mountains still had snow on them and the rustic look of the aspen arch perfectly framed them. I messed up my wedding vows.  I thought I was finished repeating after the preacher but he wasn’t finished! I guess it gave everybody a good laugh. The evening was perfect – perfect weather, perfect setting, deer were even wandering through the meadow as the reception was going on!Our first dance – literally was our FIRST dance. Chad doesn’t like to dance at all and refused to practice with me.  It also happened to be the first time I had ever danced with my dad – my dress ended up tangled and we were laughing through the entire dance.RECOMMENDED VENDORS
Photographer: Allison Ragsdale Photography  //  Venue: Ridgewood Event Center at Blue Lake Ranch

Honeymoon Location: Jamaica!

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Classy & Cuban-Inspired

Surrounded by towering pines, aspen trees and our chuppah that overlooked the mountains, the day could not have been any more idyllic .  We included family and friends in every part of the ceremony – from our puppy as the ring bearer to our parents reciting blessings.   We chose to honor my heritage with a Cuban-themed reception (1950s pre-Castro Havana). The venue was transformed into a classy Havana night club.  We served fresh from scratch Mojitos for the cocktail hour and a custom Cuban menu of ropa vieja, pollo mojo, arroz y frijoles negros and platanos maduros for dinner.  We even had an authentic cuban cigar bar.  Every detail of the day was an opportunity to share something about our lives, to honor somebody we love, or to commit ourselves to the life we want to share.  –Naphtali

Photography by  Kyla Jackson Photography

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The ring pillow we used once belonged to my deceased older brother, and was used by my mother in her wedding.

-The cup of wine under the chuppah was Joshua’s Bar Mitzvah kiddush cup.

-A large poster of Cuba was our seating chart.

-Vintage post cards from various cities in Cuba were used to identify the tables.

-The table décor consisted of burlap, exotic flowers, coffee beans, oranges, limes, cigar boxes and candles.

-Our favors were Colorado Ponderosa Pine saplings wrapped in little burlap sacks with our initials on them.  Each sapling came with a card that described the type of tree, the story of the Missionary Ridge Fire and an invitation to join in planting the saplings, and a message from us expressing how we hoped that planting the saplings would be a new beginning for the Ridge, just as the wedding was a “beginning” for us. With the permission of the Forest Service, on the afternoon after the wedding, members of the wedding party trekked up onto Missionary Ridge to plant them in areas devastated by the fires of 2002.

-The favors were placed on an enormous Cuban flag that was given to me by family in Cuba.

-Joshua’s grandmother recited the Shabbat blessings using her grandmother’s silver candle sticks rescued from Nazi-occupied Belgium.


Photographer: Kyla Jackson Photography.   Five stars for Kyla & Wesley’s amazing eye, their fantastic personalities and their impressive professionalism.  We had so much fun!

Venue/Food/Lodging/Transportation:  Durango Mountain Resort.  The chefs at Purgy’s did a fantastic job creating a custom Cuban menu and the service staff was friendly and attentive.

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Formal & Fun in the Mountains

Photography by Carol Cardwell Photography

From the bride, Miranda:
Our wedding was black and white formal, elegant, and classic.  The bridesmaids were in floor length black strapless dresses with a white sash, the boys were in tuxedos. We had custom-made black and white damask table runners and white chair covers with a black sash.  Black wooden “Love” pieces were hung with white organza ribbon from the ceiling.

The reception was held at Durango Mountain Resort – Purgy’s Lodge.  There was a kid’s buffet and activity center along with a special kid’s room (with hired babysitters). The highlights were all in the DANCING!!  A traditional wedding dance “La Marcha” was performed with the majority of the guests participating, followed later by a ‘group sing-along’ to Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing”.

My grandmother made my garter using lace and satin from my mother’s wedding dress and I carried my grandpa’s handkerchief that he gave me straight from his pocket that morning!

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