Montana Bride: Featured Wedding at The Baxter Ranch


Merritt + Steven

In the summer of 2012 I fulfilled my lifelong dream of working on a ranch in Montana, but I had no idea all that God’s Country had in store for me. I discovered that dream led to something far greater. I met Steven at a small town BBQ fest in Absarokee, MT. He asked me to dance right as the live band went to intermission; six months later, he hopped on a flight to New Orleans, and we finally had that dance and a New Year’s Kiss. For the first two years, I affectionately referred to him as ‘Montana’ and signed my return letters as ‘Ms. Louisiana.’ With all we each had going, we were always in different places. It took us four summers to close that distance, but our Bozeman wedding marked the start of our greatest adventure yet.

Our wedding brought together treasured aspects of our Catholic faith and the Native American traditions we are so blessed to share. We incorporated countless personal touches from the bridesmaids’ Pendleton shawls sewn by my Godmother, to the groomsmen’s cowboy boots and beaded bolo ties. The reception featured Louisiana cuisine and local Montana brews. There was a dance floor, and the tunes moved seamlessly from Swing Dances to Round Dances. It was truly the celebration of a lifetime.

Following a beautiful Mass at Resurrection University Parish, our covenant was blessed by a timeless Pikuni (Blackfeet) ceremony. At the foot of the Rocky Mountains, we were painted by our elders in the sacred way of the Thunder Medicine Pipe Society. We were wrapped in a single blanket, our hands bound together by leather ropes joining two eagle feathers, signifying the one flesh and new family we had become; KiiNahkKooMii (First Thunder) & NatoyiiNimoikinAkii (Holy Lily Woman).

Event Design + Planning | Katalin Green
Church | Resurrection University Catholic Parish
Ceremony + Reception | The Baxter Ranch
Photographer | Kacie Q Photography
Florist | Katalin Green Flowers
Catering | Just a Taste Catering
Cake + Desserts | Sweet Pea Bakery
Rentals | Montana Party Rentals
Bar Service | The Baxter
DJ | R.J. LaValley
Hair | Heather Mahoney, H20
Makeup | Jennifer Joubert
Dress | Hayley Paige
Rings | Miller’s Jewelry
Lodging | Element Bozeman