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Colorful Summer Wedding Near Missoula | Allison + Cody

Allison and Cody's perfect summer wedding unfolds at Alberton Orchards, along the Clark Fork River, in Western Montana. Photography by Montana Bride Vendor Renske Photo.

"Cody and I are both from Missoula and actually met our freshman year of high school. We rode the bus together and had mutual crushes on each other during tennis season, but of course didn't know about this until we started dating years later. I transferred schools and we lost touch until after college, when we started hanging out again in the same friend group. We kinda knew there may be something more there during a raft trip on the Main Salmon River with our closest friends. Later the next spring, Cody was working as a river ranger on the Smith River and invited me on a trip. We finally made it out of the friend zone on that trip and knew we were "the one" for each other pretty quickly. Cody proposed last December while we were backcountry skiing at Lolo pass with our dog. It was kind of comical, we were transitioning at the summit and Cody dropped to one knee right as I had ripped a skin, so I was trying to let him propose while trying not to slide downhill. We celebrated with powder turns and champagne!"


"I visited Alberton Orchards in early winter, and knew it was where we wanted to get married when I saw that it was along the Clark Fork River and had its own private boat access ramp right before the Alberton Gorge. Cody currently works as the FWP recreation manager for the Blackfoot River, and our love story unfolded on our local rivers, so I knew it would be super meaningful to us to incorporate that into our day. Seeing the venue's orchards and knowing Montana would be super lush and green in early July, I landed on a western garden party theme with chartreuse, one of my favorite colors, serving as a backdrop to splashes of lavender, pink, and blue. My mom Linda and I planned like crazy over 6 months, and we are ecstatic with how everything turned out.

We started our wedding weekend with a family barbecue at my parent's house on Thursday. On Friday, Cody and I and our bridal party headed out to the venue and checked in to our cabins. The venue has three amazing luxury cabins for couples along with two glamping tents, and are in the process of building several more cabins. We headed to our rehearsal dinner at The Keep Restaurant in Missoula, and had a lovely evening getting showered with love. Early Saturday morning, we had brunch on the deck of the Vintner Grille, the venue's cafe for guests. The boys floated and fished the Clark Fork river from Petty Creek to the venue's boat ramp, while the girls got pampered by Moxie hair and makeup in the bride's cabin. My maid of honor and I ran river shuttle for the boys which I still find funny; of all the days I had to drive Cody's truck and raft trailer, it was my wedding day.

Once we were all ready, Cody and I did a first look and read a private love letter to each other. I was so incredibly nervous in the last rush of getting ready, and this was so helpful to calm my nerves to get to see him and still have a super touching and emotional moment to soak it all in together. Still can't get over how handsome he looked and loved that he wore a vintage Bolo tie I had found for him years ago. We spent the afternoon taking pictures with our bridal party, and had so much fun twirling around with parasols in a gorgeous mountain valley. I'm so impressed with how beautiful all of our bouquet's turned out and how well they coordinated with the bridesmaids dresses! I did a first look with my dad by the apple orchard, before we returned to the Vintner Grille and did a pre-processional champagne toast with our parents and bridal party while guests took their seats.

Cody's aunt Katina was our officiant, and she did such a wonderful job with the ceremony. We had Cody walk down the aisle first with our dog Bowie, so that they could greet everyone and he could see all the people he loves walk towards him. The ceremony was incredibly emotional, and I'm so happy we wrote on our own vows to read to one another. After the ceremony we had a cocktail hour before making our grand entrance into dinner. I wanted the reception to feel like an intimate dinner party with friends, and so we had a large head table filled with all of our local friends we celebrate "Friendsmas" with annually. Moveable Feast did an amazing job, all the food was some of the best we've had, especially at a wedding! The speeches at our wedding blew me away! My dad was so nervous but opened it up by singing, something I never in a million years expected. We then headed to the barn, where we did our cake cutting. The cake from Art Cake MT was lavendar with vanilla buttercream and was to die for, along with lemon bars and and fruit tarts from Black Cat.

Cody and I started off the party with our first dance to Taj Mahal's Lovin' In My Baby's Eyes. The dance floor with the view of the river behind it ended up being my favorite feature of the entire venue. Something about seeing the trees light up in golden hour with the view of the river and a cool breeze just makes you really appreciate the beauty of Montana. We ventured off to the orchards for some golden hour photos, which were so fun and goofy as Cody and I were pretty stoked by that point! We spent the rest of the evening dancing the night away with all the debauchery that you'd expect! We did a last dance to La Vie En Rose by Louis Armstrong, before the shuttle whisked away the last of our guests and we capped the night off with a campfire and s'mores with our bridal party. The next day, we again had brunch, cleaned up, and then launched 5 rafts with 20 people down the river to float the Alberton Gorge! All in all we had the most magical wedding and it truly was the most fun week and best day of our lives!" –Allison, the bride


Photography | Renske Photo (#MBV)

Accommodations | Alberton Orchards

Bar & Beverage | Alberton Orchards

Beauty | Moxie

Cake & Dessert | Artcake MT and Blackcat Bake Shop

Catering | A Moveable Feast

Dresses & Menswear | Bride: Chantel Lauren (from Jasmine Lily Bridal) & Ralph Lauren Suit, Tecovas Boots and Tecovas groomsmen shirts. Bridesmaid dresses from Few Moda

Floral Design | Field Five flowers

Jewelry | L&M Fine Jewelry, Chan Luu Earrings

Officiant | Katina Kenyon

Planning | Moments by Allie and Ashley (Day of Coordination)

Rentals + Decor | 44 Rental and Design, Perfect Events, Linens from BBJ La Tavola (#MBV)

Stationery | The Bride


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