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2014 8

Destined to be married... in the Columbia Valley 12


Stealing hearts at the Stolen Church

Three weddings with a twist 20

Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

A sky-high ceremony via Skype


photo: Summit Communications

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Columbia Valley Weddings 2014


Tourism Golden



The Uniquely You issue Get inspired to make your wedding day as unique as you.


Destined to be married... in the Columbia Valley Why the valley is becoming a destination wedding hot spot.


Here comes the dress How one bride put one and one together to come up with one.


Stealing hearts at the Stolen Church An Edmonton couple takes the cake with their valley vows.


A piece of cake What’s tempting tastebuds in the world of sweet wedding treats.


Three weddings with a twist Learn how three couples buck the traditional trend.


A sky-high ceremony via Skype A couple circles the globe with their mountaintop marriage.


Food for thought Feeding your wedding guests is more emotional than you think.


Impress the guests Local experts weigh in on what’s hot for 2014.


Wedding Service Directory

Wedding Photographers Kyla Brown Photography ......................................................................... 6:8 Photography — Duane Clemens ..................................................................... Tracy Connery Photography ..............................................................

Kim on her wedding day, March 23rd, at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort. 6:8 Photography

Dibble Photography — Claire Dibble ............................................................ The Real Mckenzie Photography — Ryan Mckenzie Kap Photography — Kerilyn Pitaoulis Edward Ross Photography ................................................................... Kimberley Rae Sanderson

Columbia Valley Weddings magazine is published annually by The Columbia Valley Pioneer Newspaper, Misko Publishing Limited Partnership. Publisher . . . . . . Editor/Writer . . . Graphic Designer . Advertising Sales .

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Box 868, #8, 1008 – 8th Avenue, Invermere, B.C., V0A 1K0 Phone 250-341-6299 | Fax 1-855-377-0312 Email:

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Gillian and Nick on their wedding day, June 8th, near Dutch Creek, south of Fairmont Hot Springs. Photo by Tracy Connery

This material, written or artistic, may not be reprinted or electronically reproduced in any way without the written consent of the publisher. The opinions and statements in articles, columns and advertising are not necessarily those of the publisher or staff of Columbia Valley Weddings. It is agreed by any display advertiser requesting space that the owner's responsibility, if any, for errors or omissions of any kind, is limited to the amount paid by the advertiser for that portion of the space as occupied by the incorrect item and there shall be no liability in any event greater than the amount paid for the advertisement.

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Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

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Hardly ordinary, highly desired.

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Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

editor's note ❦

The Uniquely You issue From the moment you reply “Yes,” there are a million details to take care of until you say “I do,” and the new edition of Columbia Valley Weddings is here to provide you with the inspiration you need to guide you through the exciting whirlwind of wedding planning. More and more couples are opting for a refreshingly creative approach to their big day while still incorporating the classic elements of long-standing wedding traditions. And nothing reflects individual style like location. Destination weddings are increasingly popular, and with vintage and rustic themes continuing to dominate wedding fashion and trends for 2014, the startling beautiful rural setting of the Columbia Valley is fast becoming the place to be to tie the knot. With stories packed full of expert advice, innovative tips and sensational photographs, this issue of Columbia Valley Weddings is here to nudge you off the beaten path, spark your creativity, and help make your big day as unique as you. — Nicole Trigg, Editor/Writer

Erika and Conrad from Calgary on their Windermere engagement shoot. Kyla Brown Photography

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destination weddings ❦

Destined to be married… in the Columbia Valley

Mike & Alison, Kicking Horse Mountain Resort Photo by Claire Dibble

Trevor & Deanna, Nipika Mountain Resort Kyla Brown Photography

Travis & Sarah, The Springs in Radium Hot Springs Photo by Kimberley Rae Sanderson


Destination weddings are on the rise and an increasing number of brides and grooms are looking to the Columbia Valley to provide the stunning backdrop for their memorable day. Simply put, getting married in the Columbia Valley presents an appeal offered nowhere else. Nestled between two world-renowned mountain ranges with the largest river in the Pacific Northwest flowing between them, the valley and its scenery are second-to-none. And not only does its central location just hours from two international airports (Calgary and Cranbrook) facilitate travel for those wedding guests coming from afar, but the Columbia Valley lifestyle, from hot springs and ski resorts to tasty eats and live music, keep family and friends entertained from the moment they arrive. Many venues in the valley are gearing up to help this ever-growing number of couples take their vows. Weddings in Golden have doubled in the last year, according to Tourism Golden marketing manager Joanne Sweeting ( “It shows that people are starting to recognize Golden as a destination for weddings,” she said. “The main focus is Kicking Horse Mountain Resort because of the fantastic views you get from the top, but there are also a number of other places that have become popular.” The newly restored Golden Civic Centre has become a favoured venue for weddings in the downtown area because of its proximity to the Kicking Horse River, which presents fantastic photo opportunities, as does the nearby Kicking Horse Pedestrian Bridge. Weddings can also take place in Golden’s Spirit Square, a great open air venue. “And lodges and chalets to the north and south of Golden with views of the Blaeberry River, or the Columbia River and valley, just bring a whole different perspective to what a wedding in the mountains could be,” said Joanne. For a purely Rocky Mountain wedding experience, Nipika Mountain Resort is the quintessential destination. Booking the entire resort (located 14 kilometes off Highway 93 in Kootenay National Park), guarantees exclusive use of all the cabins to comfortably accommodate family and friends. Guests stay in luxurious handbuilt log homes while full use of the Nipika “barn” – the resort’s conference and banquet facility – is also included, not to mention the most beautiful, natural mountain settings for your ceremony. To book the resort, or to hold a smaller ceremony, requires early planning as Nipika books up to two years ahead, and space is limited. “It is two days of social opportunities, with a wide range of activities for all your friends, family and special guests,” said owner Lyle Wilson. “You will spend more time with your wedding guests and no time worrying about organization; we take care of everything.”   Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

Trent & Jackie, Copper Point Resort in Invermere Kyla Brown Photography

Graham & Adelle, Panorama Mountain Resort Kap Photography

The Sinclair Canyon in Radium Hot Springs welcomes visitors with the promise that “the mountains shall bring peace to the people.” For those who want their wedding to take place in and around this quaint little village famous for its hot springs, golf courses and trails, the Radium Resort is a one-stop shop. A beautiful wedding site at the resort’s golf course The Springs offers spectacular views up and down the Columbia Valley. “It’s just a very picturesque site with the wetlands and the mountains as the backdrop,” said Radium Resort assistant general manager Joe Evanoff. “It’s been a very popular spot.” The golf course clubhouse next to the ceremony site can accommodate the reception for a smaller size wedding, while the resort itself caters to groups of all sizes. “Couples will get married at The Springs site, have their photos taken, then they’ll come back up to the resort for the reception, right at the hotel,” said Joe. “We also do a lot of weddings at the resort. We have some beautiful spots, so people will do it all on-site.” Invermere on the Lake has several unique wedding offerings. For a touch of sophistication in a country setting, Copper Point Resort is the place to go for all your ceremony, reception and accommodation needs. With an in-house wedding events specialist, a hands-on chef and an experienced service team, rest assured you’re in the hands of seasoned experts who know what it takes to make your special day perfect. “We’ve had a high demand for weddings from the very beginning,” said Copper Point Resort general manager Amanda Robinson. “There isn’t a nicer spot for an outdoor ceremony than the Opal Patio, and the Amber Room is one of the most beautiful meeting rooms I’ve ever seen because of the spectacular views all around.” Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

Dale & Lesley, Fairmont Hot Springs Resort Edward Ross Photography

For something more low-key and intimate, yet still spectacular scenery-wise, the historic Pynelogs Cultural Centre is another favourite with a beautiful patio next to Lake Windermere. For those with their hearts set on lakeside ceremonies steeped-in-nature, look no further than nearby Kinsmen Beach or James Chabot Provincial Park, followed by a reception at any number of heritage venues in town, from Strand’s Old House Restaurant to the Invermere Community Hall. Or, a beautiful, ranch-style gazebo wedding at Eagle Ranch Resort, from ceremony to cocktail reception overlooking the lake, is the perfect option for couples seeking elegance and luxury in a rural setting. Another majestic mountaintop wedding destination awaits at Panorama Mountain Village where the backdrop of “panoramic” views creates incredible memories. On top of flexible accommodation and exciting activities, Panorama’s experienced team helps couples select the ideal outdoor ceremony site to best suit their needs. And with several reception venues to choose from, each wedding can be perfectly customized, aided by the resort’s five-star catering department. “We have exciting developments in the wedding field at Panorama Mountain Village,” said catering and banquet manager Rob Hellyer. “We are locating further outdoor wedding ceremony sites to cater to all tastes, and our scope of service is being expanded to offer more in-house wedding planning.” And bridal couples are clamouring to wed on the new Outdoor Ceremony Site at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort.


“It’s a stunningly beautiful, scenic place,” said the resort’s vice president of sales and marketing, Fiona Cull. “Our wedding business has grown substantially over the last two years.” The resort, which is already booking ahead to 2015, offers a unique mountain environment for a wedding. Serving as the anchor point is the new ceremony platform, then people have the choice of three venues for their reception: the chalet at the top of the Fairmont ski hill (“which is just beautiful up there in the summer; the views are incredible”); the Mountainside clubhouse, slightly smaller but cozy with beautiful views down the golf course; or the downstairs reception rooms at the resort lodge perfect for accommodating It’s a stunningly large groups. “But the ski hill and the golf course are beautiful, scenic the venues of the summer place. they’ve been choosing,” said Fiona. Fiona Cull Helpful and accomFairmont Hot Springs Resort modating wedding staff ensure flawless execution, VP of Sales & Marketing and tenting options are available so weather is never a concern. “We’ve got such an amazing backdrop, winter and summer,” said Fiona. “Fairmont does, with the Rockies right behind us, but the whole valley too. It’s beautiful here.” Though Copper Point Resort general manager Amanda Robinson couldn’t agree more, she feels the Columbia Valley’s appeal over places like Banff and Lake Louise isn’t based on looks alone, but also has to do with the activities offered here that aren’t available in the national parks. “For a destination wedding, for you to be able to bring your friends and family for several days, then the finale being a fabulous wedding, it’s just a great opportunity for people to spend more time together with family and friends they don’t see as often as they would like.”

Make your wedding day a mountain top experience! We’ll help you take care of everything. Enjoy the intimacy and convenience of resort accommodations for all your guests, choose from our variety of beautiful reception venues, and celebrate together in our mountain paradise. Whatever your dreams are for your big day, our wedding team is here to help make it magical.

Call our wedding specialists 250.341.3051 or visit 10

Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

Kap Photography

wedding fashion ❦

Here comes the dress Nothing reveals more about a bride’s unique style than her wedding dress, which is why brides-to-be will go to great lengths to find the perfect design and fit, but what to do when none win your heart? Heidi found herself in this predicament just months before her destination wedding at Panorama Mountain Village. Orignally from Edmonton, Heidi lived in Invermere several years ago when she was helping her brother start his construction company. “Our first project was actually a house for my parents in Panorama,” she said. “Growing up in Edmonton, my family would always go to Panorama… it was a home away from home for me.” Now a resident of Toronto (having moved east for Matt, her husband-to-be), Heidi wanted their wedding to take place at her childhood ski resort. But she was determined to find her wedding gown in Yorkville — Toronto’s epicentre of high fashion. To help Heidi on her dress-finding mission, her mother and sister flew out from Edmonton and, together with Heidi’s future mother- and sister-in-law, began a weekend tour of bridal shops. “By Sunday, we’d gone through all the other appointments,” said Heidi. “I had found one I liked, but it wasn’t exactly what I wanted.” Unwilling to settle based on the advice she’d been given (“people say you know you know”), Heidi arrived at her last appointment with all four women in tow. Her final stop was the Sarah Houston bridal boutique. Upon meeting Sarah, Heidi was quite specific. The dress had to be fitted on the top, satin with a V- or heart-shaped neck, with a poofy (“but not too poofy”) bottom. The first dress Heidi tried on wasn’t right, and while the second dress had the beautiful satin top she was after, the bottom didn’t appeal to her. Then the designer pulled out a third dress that had not yet been worn. “I tried it on and I fell in love with it,” said Heidi. “It was so playful; I could dance around in it, I couldn’t stop moving.” But then she realized the top wasn’t her favourite, and although she loved the bottom, the pink and white colours of its layers threw her off. “So what we did was put on the second dress first, and then we took the third dress, folded down the top, and put it overtop my head,”

The Real Mckenzie Photography

laughed Heidi. “I had the top of the one I liked and the bottom of the one I liked on myself at the same time, so I could see how it actually works. It was gorgeous. It was exactly what I wanted.” With just four months before the wedding, the well-known designer decided to create an entirely new dress from scratch, minus the pink. “They usually ask for six to eight months,” said Heidi. “Six is pushing it.” Because Heidi left for Panorama before the alterations were finished, her mother-in-law brought out the dress when it was complete, just days before the wedding in July. “It was nervewracking, but it came in one piece,” said Heidi. “It was perfect, it was awesome… I knew!”

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feature wedding ❦

Stealing hearts at the Stolen Church Edmonton couple Emilie and Chris knew they wanted a destination wedding, and when they narrowed down their choices to Mexico and the Columbia Valley, the valley won.

Photos by Kimberley Rae Sanderson


“I grew up in Golden, and my family and I have been coming to the valley since I was a kid,” said Chris, whose parents own a second home in Radium Hot Springs. “After Emilie and I started dating, I would take her there and she fell in love with it, just as I did.” For Emilie, who is from Lambton, a small town in Quebec, British Columbia is as much a paradise as Mexico, and when Chris’ mother suggested the Stolen Church in Windermere for their wedding, she knew they had made the right decision. “I always dreamed of getting married in a small church,” she said. When Emilie visited the church on her next trip to the Columbia Valley and learned about its unique history, she knew she had found the church of her dreams. “It was just perfect for me,” she said. “It was exactly what I wanted.” When it came to deciding on accomodation and the venue for their reception, Copper Point Resort appealed to the pair because of how accessible the resort’s attractive pool and restaurant would be for their guests, and how Cheryl Williams, the resort’s wedding events specialist, immediately made them feel at home. And the Kicking Horse Coffee café became the location for their engagement photo shoot on the suggestion of their wedding photographer, Kimberley Rae Sanderson. “We would go down to Invermere every couple months and check in with our vendors because it’s a difficult task to manage a wedding from a distance. We really relied on some key people such as Kim, Cheryl and Shandra (from The Stem florist),” said Chris. Emilie had convinced Chris early on that a white wedding focus with a hint of coral would help create the chic, classic look they both were after. “I had two words in mind to describe how I wanted my wedding to look,” she said. “Elegant and simple.” And to find the perfect wedding gown to complement their theme, she had to hunt through almost every store in both Edmonton and Calgary before finally spotting her dream dress. “As soon as I put the dress on, I cried,” said Emilie. “I was with Christopher’s mom, and I knew it was the right one as soon as I put it on.” About 80 people attended their wedding, from Quebec, Edmonton, Grande Prairie, Williams Lake, Vancouver, Fernie and Airdrie. “When I walked into the reception at Copper Point and I saw everyone extremely happy to see us, it was my number one moment,” said Chris. Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

Special personal moments for Emilie include the time she spent with her bridesmaids before the ceremony and the chance to ring the church bell after she and Chris walked down the aisle as husband and wife. “I wouldn’t choose to have my wedding anywhere else than where we had it,” said Emilie. “Even though we forgot a few small details, it was still perfect. We had an amazing day, the weather was with us — I wanted just a little bit of cloud and I had them, and the sun. It was perfect.” Their other wedding highlight was how their vendors went the extra mile to secure the prize spot on the Copper Point Golf Course for their wedding photographs, and how staff redirected golfers around them during the session. One of their photographs is now part of Copper Point Resort’s current marketing campaign (see page 5). “Our wedding photos at the golf course really capture the look and feel we worked so hard to achieve,” said Chris. “There is just something about the mountains in the background, the forests, the lake — these three elements, when you put them all together, have such an amazing effect on the soul.” The newlyweds have nothing but praise for the community of people who helped them achieve their beautiful day. “We developed relationships with these people, and I think that’s a big reason for the success of the day,” said Chris. “Because people really cared; they cared about Emilie, they cared about me, they cared about making sure everything was right.” “The valley gave the little touch you couldn’t get anywhere else,” said Emilie. “It was the best.” Columbia Valley Weddings 2014


wedding cakes ❦

A piece of cake

Kyla Brown Photography


No wedding is complete without a cake, but cupcakes are here to stay, according to two Columbia Valley cake designers whose artful handiwork has supplied stunning centrepieces for many of the valley’s weddings. “Cupcakes are still very popular because they are very easy to feed to a larger crowd — you don’t need to worry about plating, and you don’t need to worry about how you’re going to cut your cake,”said Angela Mose, owner of The Cake Box in Fairmont Hot Springs. A small cake for the traditional wedding cutting is still a must, but your cupcakes don’t have to detract from it. A coloured cupcake liner can help enhance your wedding colours; or get creative with lace liners, cupcakes wrappers, and flowers or monograms on top of the icing. As far as flavours go, Sabina Rodgers, the wedding cake designer at Invermere’s Quality Bakery, has found that lemon and raspberry lemon swirl are often called for when it comes to cupcakes, while traditional vanilla and chocolate are still in high demand for cakes, although the bakery’s carrot cake with its delicious cream cheese filling is also an ongoing favourite. “A lot of people do one layer of each to give people the choice,” said Sabina. “Every tier can have a different flavour.” Angela is finding red velvet is still popular, though not as much as in previous years, and she’s receiving more requests for lemon as well as vanilla-based spice cakes. “Cinnamon and nutmeg… very soft textured cake with those warm kinds of fall spices that you would associate with pumpkin pie,” she said. Both designers have noticed a shift to a taller style cake, from three inches high to five or six, whether it’s more layers inside a tier or two tiers of the same size stacked. “The height just adds to the grandeur of the whole cake,” said Angela.

Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

Tips from our experts On how to achieve your perfectly unique sweet wedding treats ❦

Explore more with shapes. Octogons, squares, not just traditional round. “And not every tier has to necessarily be the same height,” said Angela.

Cake toppers are back, but now they’re customized to look like you. “They’re much more personal than they used to be,” said Sabina.

Allergy-free. Gluten-free cupcakes on the side or entire cakes. Quality Bakery caters to celiacs and omits the nuts in carrot cake while Angela has a gluten-free version for every one of her regular recipes.

Customize your cake to reflect your wedding theme and décor. Match your cake and cupcakes with your invitations and/or bridesmaids dresses. Branch out and do something different. Cake balls, truffle towers, macaroon stands, even Whoopie pies (two pieces of cakes with creamy filling in between) in different flavours or with different flavoured fillings such as lemon, mint or raspberry. Interest in cake pops appears to be on the decline.

Kyla Brown Photography/Inset by Kimberley Rae Sanderson

Top decorating trends According to The Cake Box “It’s a more vintage feel, a little more rustic,” said Angela. “I think it has a lot to do with getting married out here; they’re in the mountains and they want that rustic feel.”

Soft colours for a vintage or rustic feel.

❦ ❦ ❦ ❦

Hand-piped intricate designs.

More texture. (“Rolled fondant is still very popular, but a lot of people are starting to get back to the butter creams.”) Background photo by Tracy Connery

Sugar flowers, sugar lace. Ruffles, ruffle flowers. Ombre colours. Gradual change in hue, down or up the cake, with the flowers up the side of the cake or with the actual icing. 250-342-5102 Columbia Valley Weddings 2014


weddings ❦

Three weddings with a twist From farm life and the fifties to foot-washings, three couples share how they personalized their weddings (or plan to) to make their special day just that much more memorable.

Alexis & Matt W

ith their wedding date set for September 2014, Alexis and Matt are still in the planning stages, but if their engagement photos are anything to go by, an extremely unique wedding is definitely in the works. Alexis was born in Mexico City but moved to Canada three years ago from Dubai where she was living and working. Soon after she met Matt, an old school cowboy from High River, Alberta in the Adventure Tourism Business Operation Program at College of the Rockies in Golden. “The first time we met was for a trip in ca-

noes down the Columbia River,” said Alexis. “I was new to the class and he was the only one who wanted to pair up with an inexperienced Mexican!” Their friendship grew and within a year they were inseparable. For their big day, which will take place on their property in Parson (north of Spillimacheen) surrounded by beautiful scenery and 200 people, they are planning on a Western theme with a big bonfire, hay bales, homemade favours and, of course, some type of tequila cocktail. “You will be able to see two very different cultures coming together, and our love for nature and sustainability,” said Alexis. “We are doing almost everything organic, using

Jess & Geoff B

ecause Jess’ unique style and attire is inspired by the 1950s rockabilly era, and Geoff (who admits to loving anything unique and different), grew up listening to ‘50s music (since it was all his mother would play), a 1950s motif for their Invermere wedding was the obvious choice for their quirky, fun-loving personalities. “The theme was 1950s candy shop and old time cinema,” said Jess. “Having the ceremony at the Toby Theatre was very important (it was the historic theatre’s first wedding) and, at the reception, having a candy and ice cream buffet was crucial!” With Geoff being a member of the Invermere Fire Department, the local couple wanted the rest of the firefighters to

The Real Mckenzie Photography

veggies from our garden, fruits for desserts from the orchard, eggs from our chickens and beef from Matt’s family ranch.” They’re excited to share their way of life and offer something different to their guests coming from around the world. “It will be very unique and magical,” said Alexis.

be involved, and Old Red, the department’s antique fire truck. So on the day of their wedding, when guests entered the venue, they were greeted by the entire firefighting squad standing as honour guard at the entrance of the Toby Theatre. And Jess, the captain of the local women’s roller derby team, made sure she incorporated her love of roller skates by having her team doing a skate-through at the reception that followed. “Seeing everyone dressed up in 1950s-themed clothing was great,” said Geoff. “It made us feel really special to see everyone put in the effort to participate and get into the theme.” Their goal was to create a fun, relaxed atmosphere for their families and friends, and alleviate any stress that weddings can cause. Both agree that having the Toby Theatre as their venue was incredibly special. “It wasn’t so much ‘uniquely us’ as ‘uniquely us and all our friends’ who offered their time and support,” said Jess. “The whole experience was phenomenal.”

Photos by Kimberley Rae Sanderson


Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

Vikki & Ross

Kyla Brown Photography


eeting on a mountain biking trip felt like fate to Vikki and Russ, who had both travelled from out of province to Fernie for a guided holiday with Sacred Rides Mountain Bike Adventures. Vikki was living in Saskatchewan at the time while Russ had flown over from England to do the trip with a friend. During the course of that week, the tour group spent two nights at Nipika Mountain Resort. Two years later when they were planning their wedding from their home in Revelstoke, the avid mountain bikers knew they wanted a beautiful wedding outside in nature, and one special place instantly came to mind. “What we really wanted to do was force everybody to come camping in tents with us out in the bush which, we had to admit, lacked practicality.” said Vikki. “And then it just hit us; we realized Nipika was the perfect place.” Their outdoor ceremony was attended by about 65 people from four countries and every province west of Ontario. “We knew that people were travelling from all over the world and all over Canada to come and we didn’t want to have a ‘Heycome-to-our-thing-and-feed-youand-leave’ kind of a wedding,” said Vikki. “We wanted everyone to have a beautiful weekend experience enjoying the Canadian Rockies and being blown away by how exquisite and incredible it is.” As for the more traditional elements of Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

their wedding, “it wasn’t well thought out,” she said with a laugh. “I kind of allow my personality to manifest in whatever way it’s going to and it seems to just take off and do whatever it wants.” Her vintage theme was “an accident.” “The dress started it; I found the dress in about 15 minutes at Holt Renfrew in Vancouver,” said Vikki. “All of a sudden I noticed my engagement ring and the dress were both a vintagy-looking motif, so at that point I said, ‘I think we need to run with this’.” She knew she wanted individual bridesmaid dresses (“I like the off-the-wall presence of things that don’t match”) and sent her three best friends (from Ontario, Australia, and Yarrow, B.C.) links to 20 dresses she liked on ModCloth, a vintage-inspired online clothing store. As for shoes, she fell in love with two different styles she also found online, and picked up pairs for the bridesmaids as well as herself. “I didn’t care that that they didn’t match the colour,” said Vikki. “And at that point I didn’t even know what dresses my bridesmaids would be picking.” With four individual dresses and two pairs of matching shoes, Vikki loved the idea of dressing up with her girlfriends without any one of them standing out. “I think there’s so much about a wedding where the bride always has to be front and centre all the time,” she said. “I liked taking opportunities to equalize and deflect that spotlight. I also didn’t have a

maid of honour because they’re all my best friends; I didn’t want to choose just one.” As for the non-matching assortment of original ties from the ‘30s, ‘40s and ‘50s worn by Russ and his groomsmen, these, too, Vikki purchased online from a vintage tie collector in Pennsylvania, who mailed them to her. Invermere vendors provided the finishing touches. Customized flower arrangements were provided by Canterbury Flowers (“they totally got my vision”) and an unconventional menu with as many locally grown ingredients as possible was supplied by Randy MacSteven of Creative Catering. Unique highlights of the day included her father, a minister, performing the ceremony (“he officiated my brother’s ceremony so that was just a natural touch”) and a biblically-inspired foot washing ritual to the sounds of Amazing Grace played by three buskers Vikki had recruited from the Revelstoke farmers’ market.  “It’s an example of giving, and of servant-hood to each other,” said Vikki. “It was a very beautiful moment, one of real connection for the two of us, and was something that, I think, moved everyone. We’ve had a lot of very thoughtful feedback on it from people who see our photos, which is so special.” The day after the wedding, half the wedding guests joined Vikki and Russ on a 20-kilometre whitewater canoe paddle down the Kootenay River, guided by Nipika staff.  “They loved it.” said Vikki. “Russ and I love the mountains; we are mountain bikers and paddlers and rock climbers, and we wanted to be able to open the adventure door to our guests as well as surprise them by how accessible and beautiful it all is. I think we accomplished that.” 


weddings ❦

A sky-high cermony via Skype

Kyla Brown Photography


he beauty and splendour of the Purcells and Rocky Mountains have beckoned to many couples desiring a spectacular setting for their sacred union. Jasper-based couple Amber and Sebastiaan were no different when they began planning their 2012 wedding. Their love for the Golden area helped them decide on the Eagle’s Eye terrace at the top of Kicking Horse Mountain Resort as the venue for their wedding vows. “We knew we wanted to get married outside and somewhere on a mountain,” said Amber, “and this seemed like the most accessible affordable option, instead of helicoptering in to somewhere.” Opting for a small, intimate ceremony, Amber and Sebastiaan were still faced with the challenge of including every one of their family members. “We organized it quite quickly and Sebastiaan’s parents from New Zealand couldn’t make it,” said Amber. Her family from Maple Ridge, B.C. were present as well as Sebastian’s brother, who was able to make the trip with his family, for a total of 11. “Once we found out there was Internet access up at the Eagle’s Eye Restaurant, the solution just unfolded organically.” After checking with the restaurant staff to see if their idea would even be possible, the couple organized to have Sebastiaan’s parents witness their ceremony via Skype. With his father in New Zealand and his mother in Holland visiting family and friends, two laptops were required. And when the formalities began, the laptops were placed on the two seats in the front row normally reserved for the groom’s parents.

“So my parents were on one side and his parents were on the other side,” said Amber. “It was the best way to incorporate his family into the ceremony.” Invermere-based wedding commissionaire Andy Stuart-Hill, who performed the ceremony, said that of the 400-plus weddings he’s presided over, a handful have involved Skype (to broadcast to a family member who couldn’t make it), but this particular ceremony was by far the most unique. “I conducted the ceremony, which takes about 15 minutes in total, then I pronounced them husband and wife, and for the big kiss, you could hear the cheering from these two laptops,” said Andy.”The laptops were like guests, sitting there right in front of me.” “It was just one of those wonderful things,” he said. “On top of the mountain at Kicking Horse with Wi-Fi was really, really something.” A few people, including Amber’s sister, took turns holding up the laptops and showing the Skype audiences the view of the surrounding mountains. A year later, when Sebastiaan’s mother travelled to Canada to visit the newlyweds, she accompanied them back to Kicking Horse Mountain Resort to the ceremony site so she could see it in real time. “She just thought it was the most beautiful place to get married,” said Amber. The small, intimate ceremony was considered exceptionally romantic by those who did attend. And although Sebastiaan’s parents were elsewhere on the globe, them being able to participate via Skype was, for Amber, the next best thing. “It was pretty special having his family there in that fashion,” she said. “It’s incredible to do that at the top of a mountain.”

GORGEOUS COMMUNITY HALL FOR RENT Affordable, scenic and appealing venue at Bella Vista Estates for weddings/groups up to 60 guests. Five minutes south of Fairmont Hot Springs. Call Bob Walker • 403-861-2309 18

Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

culinary ❦

Food for thought The growing trend of individualized weddings is putting more focus on what to feed hungry wedding guests than ever before. Gone are the impersonal meals ordered straight from a ready-made menu. These days bridal couples are putting more care into their food choices, and incorporating tastes and treats reminiscent of special occasions in their lives. “There are a lot of memories tied to food, and people are asking more and more to have something that’s personal to them,” said Copper Point Resort executive chef Jeffery Hicks. Which means if you and your loved one shared a sushi plate on your first date, don’t be afraid to request sashimi and sushi rolls for the appetizer trays at your reception. Or if grandma’s perogies are a family favourite, dishing out some authentic replicas is definitely en vogue.

Tastings are a top trend too, where the couple, sometimes accompanied by members of the immediate family, meets with the chef at the venue of their choice to discuss their preferences, select some items, and experience a mini-version of their planned meal. An increasing awareness around food allergies and intolerances means many weddings are going gluten-free while vegetarian dishes are also becoming more commonplace. And while a buffet-style presentation with a chef-attended carving stations is still the standard, the personal touch of a plated meal is gaining appeal. “There’s a lot more input from both the bride and the groom now,” said Jeffery. “And it’s a lot more common for the groom to have strong opinions on food, whereas before he used to sit quietly and wait for the whole thing to be over.” Bringing a couple’s colour in to the wedding feast is another fashionable request, whether

it’s a purple sorbet Photo by Tracy Connery/Inset by Claire Dibble to match the bridesmaids’ dresses or heirloom carrots and purple potatoes. And providing a ‘taste of the place’ is particularly hip in the valley’s destination wedding market. “They want to use Windermere farms for their vegetables, if we can, or request that it’s B.C.-grown or from Alberta,” said Jeffery. “People are looking for more colour and variety, and like to be surprised.”

Personalized Wedding Arrangements by Shandrea O’Brien CFD [p] 250.342.7559 [e] Unit 2, 305 Third Ave Invermere, BC

Columbia Valley Weddings 2014


planning ❦

Impress the guests Having your wedding reflect your own individual style means paying attention to even the smallest of details. From table seating and centrepieces to ceremony style and reception after-party, the opportunities to express yourself on your wedding day are there for the taking. But if you’re baffled by choices and don’t know what to do, here are some great ideas by some of the most sought-after wedding specialists in the Columbia Valley.

Sarah & Craig, Invermere Photo by Kimberley Rae Sanderson/Inset by Claire Dibble

Leanne Brooks

Nancy Hetherington

Cheryl Williams

Lucky in Love Wedding Design

Fairmont Hot Springs Resort

Copper Point Resort

One of the things that brides are really looking for when they come to the valley to get married is rustic. It’s the country and that’s all about texture. Think of barn walls and lace, burlap runners or chair ties, branches and mason jar flower arrangements with wildflowers or white and antique-coloured roses. Of course, birch is always in because the look of the bark is so beautiful. A vase wrapped with birch bark, birch bark place cards or birch trees with lights. One thing that has recently caught on is bunting (flags hanging from the ceiling), which can complement the wedding colours and be paired with mini light strands. Photo displays are popular, too. I like to suggest a black and white photo clothespin line because you can drape it just about anywhere and it’s simple.

Sand ceremonies have become very popular (typically involving three glass vessels: one holding the bride’s sand, another holding the groom’s sand, and an empty one that eventually holds both) and we also held a tree planting ceremony where both families’ name tags were attached to a tree (the family tree) and the bride and groom planted it together. Wedding bubbles are very popular where each guest is given a bottle of bubble blowing liquid to blow bubbles as the bride and groom walk down the aisle. And anything goes nowadays when it comes to the attendants — uneven numbers (three bridesmaids, two groomsmen), females as the best men, a mother of the bride as the maid of honour. And dogs as ring bearer or attendant is more and more common, as are candy tables, wish trees and photo booths.

What I’ve noticed is a growing trend in “pick a seat not a side” in both the ceremony and reception, incorporating pictures of the bride and groom at different age levels to correspond with table numbers, or a lack of table numbers altogether! Guests books are changing face as well. Brides are putting out Polaroid cameras, and asking guests to take pictures of themselves to put into an empty book. Also, framed pictures of the couple are doubling as guest books, which then can be put on display in their home. Bars are picking up in popularity, from cigar bars to make-yourown-ice cream sundae. As for decor, dramatic eye-catching details like glowing centerpieces are big, and so are themed weddings. And more than ever, I’m hearing brides say “we made them” instead of “ I rented them.”


Wedding destinations Honeymoon packages

Check out

Cruises business_listings for all the products and services you’ll need for your special day.

3 755 13 Street • 250-342-6987 Toll Free: 1-888-982-8888

Hwy 93/95, Invermere • 250-342-2844 •

Tents • Tables & Chairs Dinnerware • Bar & Glasses Tablecloths • Coffee Urn • Grills Dance Floor • Arbour • PA System Radium Hot Springs, BC

Ph: 250-347-9238



Professional Disc Jockey Services Over 300 weddings with 12 years experience Weddings + Corporate + Private Parties Equipment Sales + Rentals (250) 342-5276 • WILCOM@TELUS.NET

Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

Wedding Service Directory SERVICES BEAUTY & HAIR


Anglz Hair & Tanning Studio - Invermere Bare Hands Day Spa - Radium Bliss Hair & Esthetics - Invermere Cutloose Hair & Tanning Salon - Invermere Earthstone Mobile Spa Eclipse Hair Studio - Edgewater Fusion Wellness Spa - Invermere (page 4) Fusion at Copper Point - Invermere (page 4) HAIR...a salon - Invermere Jigsaw for Hair Inc. - Invermere Karla Ector MakeUp Artist (page 21) Mary Kay Cosmetics Mystique Studio - Invermere Natural Springs Spa - Fairmont Neighbourhood Hair - Golden Personal Touch Hair & Body Day Spa - Golden Rising Sun Massage and Spa - Radium Scizzor Sisters - Invermere Shear Perfection - Golden Sunsations Day Spa - Invermere The Naked Yeti Waxing Studio and Aesthetics - Cranbrook The Pin Up Parlour - Fairmont Urban Roots Salon & Spa - Cranbrook Valley Hair Styling & Tanning - Invermere Vivid Hair Studio - Golden

250-342-3227 250-347-2121 250-342-6507 250-342-8880 250-270-0091 250-342-1397 250-341-3511 250-341-3522 250-342-4050 250-688-1004 403-830-2249 250-341-1572 250-342-7277 250-345-6007 250-344-4949 250-344-6413 250-347-9311 250-342-2446 250-344-7611 250-342-6899 250-426-3089 250-270-0111 250-417-3417 250-342-6355 250-439-1001

250-342-5470 250-427-7714 250-919-7595 778-517-1415 888-681-9977 250-345-2110

CATERING/BARTENDING SERVICES Bad Habit Bistro - Golden Columbia Valley Bartenders - Invermere (page 21) From Scratch A Mountain Kitchen - Fairmont Green Door Catering - Kimberley Meet on Higher Ground - Radium Smoking Waters Cafe Bistro - Fairmont The View at Copper Point - Invermere

250 439-1995 250-341-5683 250-345-0008 250-908-6423 250-347-6567 250-345-4008 250-341-3392

250-344-6879 250-344-6483 250-344-5622

250-581-1425 250-342-0186

250-427-2552 250-489-5528 250-426-4422

COMMISSIONERS - GOLDEN Hans Lenstra Shirley Seward Simone Ward


COMMISSIONERS - CRANBROOK Marilyn D. Dakin Donald L. Davidson Leonard Knudsen



Great Events Rentals - Calgary 403.319.0028 Kicking Horse Party Rentals - Golden 250-272-8572 Silva Designs - Calgary LC Wedding Design - Cranbrook 250-426-0220 MB7 Party and Tent Rentals - Radium (page 20) 250-347-9238 Sandor Rental Equipment Ltd - Cranbrook 800-561-5254

Ruby Rioux


DESTINATION WEDDINGS/HONEYMOONS Invermere Travel World (page 20) Maritime Travel - Cranbrook Mountain City Travel - Kimberley Travel Plus - Cranbrook UNIGLOBE Baker St. Travel - Cranbrook

250-342-6978 250-489-4788 877-427-2233 250-417-2777 250-426-8975

EVENT PLANNERS All Dreams Consulting - Cranbrook Dream Events - Cranbrook Lucky In Love Wedding Design - Invermere (page 7) Tryna’s Eventz - Kimberley

250-919-0337 250-464-0089 250-341-LOVE (5683) 778-481-1981


CAKES AND DELICACIES Buttercup Creations - Invermere Cupplecakes - Kimberley Crumbs Cakery - Cranbrook JJ’s Custom Cakery - Cranbrook Quality Bakery - Invermere (page 10) The Cake Box - Fairmont Hot Springs (page 22)

Heather Darbyshire


Canterbury Flowers - Invermere Flowers From Home - Golden Flowers Galore - Kimberley MJ’s Floral Designs - Cranbrook The Flower Pot Floral Shop Ltd. - Cranbrook The Stem Floral Design - Invermere (page 19)

1-800-330-9910 250-344-5855 800-224-5457 250-426-8659 250-426-6006 250-342-7559

GIFTS AND REGISTRIES Ashley Furniture Home Store - Cranbrook Bavin Glassworks - Invermere, Fairmont & Panorama Be Gifted - Invermere Bedroom Furniture Galleries - Cranbrook Distinctive Hand Carving - Kimberley Fairmont Village Gift Shop Glacier Soap - Invermere It’s a Wrap! Specialty Gifts & Baskets - Invermere La Galeria II - Fairmont Hot Springs Radium Bighorn Gift & Souvenir River Gems Jewellery & Fossil Gallery - Invermere SEARS Canada - Invermere Three Bears Gift Shop - Invermere The Yodelling Woodcarver - Kimberley Village Arts Society - Invermere

250-426-2311 250-342-6816 250-341-3775 888-678-4343 250-427-7211 250-345-6133 250-341-3110 250-342-3160 250-345-6807 250-347-7725 250-342-0177 250-342-6901 250-342-3331 250-427-7211 250-342-6151

HIS AND HERS FORMALWEAR Details by JoAnne - Invermere Inside Edge Boutique - Invermere Tara’s Boutique - Cranbrook Top Notch - Golden Kootenay Tailor Shop - Cranbrook Tiffany’s Thredz Veils & Tails Wedding Boutique - Cranbrook

250-342-7171 250-342-0402 250-489-4177 250-344-5560 250-426-2933 250-342-2901 250-426-3333

karla ector 403.830.2249 • • Columbia Valley Weddings 2014




DJ’s Paper Place - Golden Kootenay Kwik Print Local View Printing & Design - Invermere Lucky In Love Wedding Design - Invermere (page 7) Palliser Printing - Invermere

250-344-6414 250-489-4213 250-342-2445 250-341-LOVE (5683) 866-342-2999

JEWELLERY Delamont E H Jeweler Ltd. - Cranbrook Dietje Hagedoorn Goldsmith & Designer - Radium Fairmont Goldsmiths - Invermere Frozen Gold - Cranbrook Jewels On Ninth - Cranbrook Mappins - Cranbrook Peoples Jewellers - Cranbrook River Gems Jewellery & Fossil Gallery - Invermere

250-426-2772 250-347-6711 250-342-8778 250-426-4621 250-489-5773 250-426-2112 250-426-4275 250-342-0177

MUSIC, DJs, ENTERTAINMENT Billy Jive and the Funktastics - Cranbrook 250-420-1916 Champagne Flutes 250-427-5054 Choice Music Services - Golden 250-344-0072 DJ Mary Flavours - Cranbrook 250-402-3252 Elite Sound & Light Entertainment - Golden 250-344-7212 Golden Delicious Productions - Golden 250-344-4979 Just Music DJ Service - Cranbrook 250-426-2999 Livin’ and Dancin’ DJ Services - Canmore 403-609-3546 L8 - Invermere 250-342-5689 Midnight Music - Cranbrook 250-417-9492 Momentum Music - Cranbrook 250-439-8158 Northwest Productions - Cranbrook 250-426-4301 Oso Simple - Invermere PB Pro-Audio & Lighting - Cranbrook 250-421-9099 Ray’s Music - Cranbrook 250-427-7000 Rocky Mountain Disc Jockey Service - Cranbrook 250-426-8842 Segue Music - Golden 250-344-7112 Slideways Solo Guitar Smarty Pants - Invermere 250-342-3264 South Side Entertainment - Golden 250-348-2080 WCP, Wil C Productions - Invermere (page 20) 250-342-5276 Wild Bill/Diamond’s DJ Services (page 7) 250-409-4448

PHOTOGRAPHY 6:8 Photography - Fernie (page 11) 250-423-3696 Amy Lavonne Photography - Calgary & Invermere 250-341-8805 Carey Nash Photography - Edmonton Captured in Time Photography - Golden 250-344-6145 Claire Dibble Photography - Golden 250-290-0201 Cranbrook Photo 250-489-5336 Good2Go Photography - Columbia Valley 406-370-9143 Frida Viklund Photography - Kimberley 250-427-8794 Jana Visions - Golden 250-344-8312 Jodi L’Heureux Photography - Kimberley Julie-Anne Davies Photography - Kimberley 250-427-0085 Julie Williams Photography - Golden 403-675-8085 KAP Photography - Invermere (page 14) 250-342-0599 Kat Kadford Photography - Golden Kimberley Rae Sanderson - Invermere (page 15) Krevan Photography - Kimberley

250-344-5355 250-342-5102 250-427-7196

Kyla Brown Photography - Invermere (page 15) 250-688-8888 Marlene Chabot Photography - Invermere 250-688-1486 Raven Eye Photography - Fernie 250-430-1097 Red Lilly photography 250-365-0944 Sue Crowley Photography - Invermere 250-342-9673 The Real Mckenzie Photography - Kimberley (page 11) 250-427-7423 Through My Eyes Photography - Cranbrook 250-421-1668 Tracy Connery Photography - Invermere (page 14) 250-345-4002

VENUES Alexa Chalets - Timber Inn & Restaurant - Golden 877-348-2228 Beaverfoot Lodge - Golden 250-344-3902 Bella Vista Estates - Fairmont Hot Springs (page 18) 403-861-2309 Bighorn Meadows Resort - Radium Hot Springs 250-347-2323 Bugaboo Lodge - Bugaboo Provincial Park 800-661-0252 Bull River Guest Ranch - Cranbrook area 250-429-3760 Chateau Kimberley Hotel 866-488-8886 Columbia Valley Chamber of Commerce - Invermere (page 20) 250-342-2844 Copper Point Golf Course - Invermere 250-341-3392 Copper Point Resort - Invermere (page 5) 250-341-4004 City of Cranbrook 250-426-4211 City of Kimberley 250-427-5311 District of Invermere 250-342-9281 Earl Grey Lodge - Panorama 250-341-3641 Emery’s Mountain View - Fort Steele 250-426-4756 Fairmont Hot Springs Resort (page 24) 800-663-4979 Fort Steele Resort 250-489-4268 Glenogle Mountain Lodge Resort - Golden 250-344-7638 Golden Eco Adventure Ranch 250-344-6825 Green Door Event Space - Kimberley 250-908-6423 Heather Mountain Lodge - Rogers Pass 866-344-7490 Hillside Lodge & Chalets - Golden 250-344-7281 Invermere Curling Club (page 22) 250-342-3315 Island Lake Resorts - Fernie area 250-423-3700 Kicking Horse Mountain Resort - Golden 866-SKI-KICK Kicking Horse River Lodge - Golden 877-547-5266 Kimberley Elks Banquet Hall 250-421-4267 Kimberley Alpine Resort 250-427-6745 Mark Creek Lodge - Kimberley 250-427-2266 Mount Baker Heritage Hotel - Cranbrook 250-489-3070 Nipika Mountain Resort - Kootenay National Park (page 23) 250-342-6516 Panorama Mountain Village (page 10) 800-663-2929 Prestige Mountainside Resort - Golden 250-344-7990 Prestige Best Western Radium Hot Springs 250-347-2340 Prestige Rocky Mountain Resort - Cranbrook 250-417-0444 Radium Resort 800-667-6444 Rustica Steak House/Eagle Ranch Resort - Invermere (page 6) 877-877-3889 St. Eugene Golf Resort & Casino - Cranbrook 250-420-2000 Tourism Golden (page 2) 800-622-4653 Tourism Radium Hot Springs 888-347-9331

VIDEO Custom Multimedia Creations - Cranbrook Rider Media Productions - Golden Canada Audiotomic - Cranbrook

250-426-4416 604-356-2543 250-489-1400

Invermere and District Curling Centre 250-342-3315 • 509-13th St., Invermere

Dance hall up to 500 people (Summer only)

Licensed lounge up to 120 people (All year)

Kitchen Available Rates start at $125


Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

Your dream wedding… Our dream location the complete wedding destination

Luxury Log Homes · Banquet and Reception Hall Breathtaking Outdoor Ceremony Sites Catering Options · Low/High Season Rates Eco-conscious and Pet Friendly

Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

14 kms on Settlers Road · 250.342.6516 ·


Naturally yours. From the beautiful Outdoor Ceremony Site to the intimate Mountain Chalet to the traditional banquet rooms in the lodge, customize your wedding so it’s perfectly yours.



1.800.663.4979 |

Columbia Valley Weddings 2014

Columbia Valley Weddings 2014  

Online edition of The Columbia Valley Pioneer's feature publication, Columbia Valley Weddings for 2014.

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