Courtney & Ryan
What a gorgeous location for the beautiful summer wedding of Courtney and Ryan. Flathead Lake is a prime Montana summer destination – and it is easy to see why – but this setting means more to this couple than the average vacationer. Courtney describes why in their story below.
Photography by Amber Lynn Photography
Most of my girlfriends knew that I always wanted to get married on September 16th. My silly reason why: I thought the date written out in cursive was so beautiful for an invitation. On September 16th of 2017, it was just another ordinary day (and I really didn’t think much of the fact that it was the 16th of September), and Ryan and I were hanging out at home. We planned to go down to the lake house where my parents live so that Ryan could help my dad with some work on their shop. We were on our way and Ryan says “think about all those girls getting married on your day today.” I quickly gave him “the look.”
When we get down to the lake house, both of my parents were sitting outside at our outdoor tiki bar on Flathead Lake. It was the first day that Fall where we actually had gotten some sun instead of rain and it was beautiful out! Ryan and I went down and sat with them and Ryan instantly jumps into a story from a few years ago about a concert that we went to and this song that we both loved. I thought it was a weird and random story to jump into right away, but I sat and listened anyway. After Ryan finished telling the story about this song, my dad says, “Oh, I have that song on my iPad!” and immediately turns it on (which was also weird because he definitely wouldn’t know this song). As he did this, a group of about 20 of our closest friends and family come from behind the bushes down by the lake. They were all carrying red roses and our song was playing. I immediately knew what was happening. I jumped up with happy tears and Ryan got down on one knee. It turned out that I didn’t get my wedding on September 16th but my proposal instead. We had a really special rest of the evening celebrating with all our special people.
Ryan and I spent 7 years together before we finally pulled the trigger on getting married. We knew the entire time that we absolutely had to have a big, all-out, amazing wedding with all of our family and friends. We also knew we wanted it to be a multiple-day event so that anyone traveling could come and enjoy Flathead Lake and make a summer trip out of it. The Wednesday and Thursday before the big day, our wedding party and family began to arrive and we had a day full of yard games and swimming. On Friday, my aunt and uncle hosted a rehearsal dinner for 75 family members and after that we rented the Far West Charter for 150 people where the rest of the guests who had traveled could attend. We took a two-hour cruise around Flathead Lake and had the best time.
Saturday was the wedding day and was the best day of our lives. We had approximately 300 guests in attendance and loved every minute of it. Our band played well into the night with the lake as their backdrop. The toasts by my father, the best-man, maid-of honor, brother-of-the-bride and two other friends were absolutely amazing. We cried, then laughed, then cried, then laughed some more. On Sunday, after the party was over, we relaxed by the lake and nursed our hangovers!
My family’s home on Flathead Lake is a very special place to Ryan and me. It’s where I grew up, and where the two of us spent many summers together. It was where Ryan asked my dad for his blessing on Father’s Day. It’s where we got engaged on September 16th, and it’s where we got married 10 months later. And it’s where we hopefully will get to raise our kids and spend many more years together.
Couture // Mimi's Bridal
Local Activities // Far West Boat Tours
Photography // Amber Lynn Photography