Special Issues » Married In Montana

Montana made with love

Four weddings and some advice for creating your own



Danielle Rose and Dave Thompson

How they met: Danielle and Dave grew up together in Michigan and saw each other during a “family camp” that their families put together each summer. They met up again in their early 20s at a restaurant. “The waitress came over and said ‘Are you guys on a date?’ and I said, ‘God, no!’” recalls Danielle. “And then he looked at me and I realized this was a date.” When Danielle moved to Montana to attend the Rocky Mountain School of Photography they went their separate ways, but they re-connected again during a wedding and realized they were in love.

The proposal: Danielle went on a trip to Guatemala and Belize with her brother. Dave flew down to visit and Danielle’s brother made an excuse to fly home, leaving them together. Dave took her on a romantic sailboat ride and asked her to marry him.

Missoula Independent news
  • Cathrine L. Walters Photography

Wedding location: The couple’s time at family camp fostered a love for nature, so they decided to get married at Many Glacier, in the northwest section of Glacier National Park. Guests and the wedding party hiked one-third of a mile and took two boat trips to get to the spot on Lake Josephine where the celebration took place.

Natural décor: Wildflowers, birch branches, moss and antlers decorated the lakeside beach. The rustic pavilion where people gathered was decked with party lights and from the ceiling hung Mason jars full of sand and candles. “We wanted it to feel simple and reflect nature,” Danielle says.

Making it personal: Guests were asked to pick one of three guest books to sign and, to make it more interesting, answer one of three questions: What’s the best marriage advice you’ve received? What’s your favorite memory of us? What’s the most romantic place you’d recommend? “We wanted it to be more than just a signature and ‘best wishes,’” Danielle says.

Missoula Independent news
  • Cathrine L. Walters Photography

The dessert: For tradition’s sake, Danielle and Dave got a small cake from Black Cat Bakery. Their true love for pies, however, inspired them to pick a variety—peanut butter, huckleberry, chocolate mousse—from Lula’s Cafe in Whitefish.

Final thoughts: “I was never the girl who played with Barbies and had them get married and imagined this huge wedding. In the end, the goal for us was to have fun, make it memorable. People who came are still talking about their adventure in Montana. I had to drag some of them by their little toes to get there, but once they came, they were happy they did.”

Photography: Cathrine L. Walters Photography

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