YMCA of the Rockies Estes Park Colorado Wedding Photography Mabyn Ludke Photography


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It’s not everyday that a girl gets flown out to the Rocky Mountains in Colorado to shoot a wedding! So I was beyond excited to be Ruth & Jon’s wedding photographer! After getting flights rearranged and sitting for hours in airports I finally made it to Estes Park and my jaw literally hit the ground! I for one think Central NY is pretty stinking gorgeous, but my breath was literally taken away when I saw the snow capped mountains that surrounded the lodge I was staying in! Everywhere I looked nature’s beauty was abundant!

Ruth and Jon had planned for a gorgeous outdoor wedding in the middle of the YMCA of the Rockies. Sadly, the weather was against us and the day of their wedding the weather was obstinant. Ruth and Jon wouldn’t be deterred though, they moved everything into a super cute little chapel with gorgeous lighting and had one of the sweetest ceremonies ever! Especially with Ruth’s dad giving her away AND marring them, everyones emotions were running high. The love was so thick, it just enveloped everyone!

One of the favorite things about my clients is that they’re usually very adventurous! So when I asked Ruth and Jon if they’d be willing to take an umbrella out into the rain so we could get them some mountain shots, they were more than willing to oblige! It was worth every rain drop on my head for these shots! I love them!

Afterwards we all dried off, had a delicious meal, and mingled with some great friends. Over all the day was just as amazing as if it had been dry out! Thank you so much Ruth and Jon! It was a blessing!


YMCA of the Rockies Estes Park Colorado Wedding Photography Mabyn Ludke Photography

YMCA of the Rockies Estes Park Colorado Wedding Photography Mabyn Ludke Photography

YMCA of the Rockies Estes Park Colorado Wedding Photography Mabyn Ludke Photography

How did your fiance propose? On the second anniversary of being together we decided to make dinner together and go for a walk in the park where Jon first asked me to be his girlfriend. As we were walking in the park (which is the same park where we had our engagement photos taken), we talked about the day two years before (now three years ago!) when we became a couple. As we sat on a stump where we had watched the sun set previously, I stood up and said that we should take a photo. I turned around with the camera, and there was Jon on one knee offering me a ring. He asked me to be his wife and I said yes (after the initial shock)! Jon says he could not discern the look I had on my face at first; I was so surprised! The timing was such a surprise, but could not have been more perfect.
Tell me a bit about the planning process for your wedding (how did you pick the venue, colors, funny stories, etc..): We knew we wanted to get married in Colorado where I am from, and we considered several places. Finally we decided on the YMCA because they were the most affordable in one of the prettiest places in Colorado. The Estes Park area is special to my family as my great-grandparents lived nearby and my great-grandfather helped build the roads at the YMCA. All that to say, the venue turned out to be more special than we had originally thought it would be. I love the color green, so that made picking colors easy. One of my favorite things about the wedding are the flowers. Over the last year Jon and I collected various glass bottles to put the flowers in and use as centerpieces. The florist was amazing, and really caught on to my vision of what I wanted the flowers to look like. She ordered the perfect kinds of dainty and almost wildflower looking ones in bulk for us to pick up. My bridesmaids and I arranged all the flowers in the glass bottles the day before the wedding, and I love how they turned out! Plus, they doubled as wedding favors. We put a little tag on each bottle with our names and guests could go home with some of the pretty flowers. Jon and I (but mostly Jon) spent hours and hours listening to music to decide what to play at the ceremony and our second reception in New York.
What was the most memorable moment(s) of your day? We were going to have the ceremony at an outdoor chapel and we did reserve an indoor chapel just in case the weather didn’t cooperate, and we woke up to rain on the day of the wedding. As the morning went on it looked like the sky might clear up, but then the rain turned into FREEZING rain. We moved everything to the indoor chapel and everyone made it there in time. It worked out beautifully! Jon also says that seeing me come down the aisle was very memorable.
Funniest memory from your wedding day? One funny memory is that the ceremony ended up being quite a bit shorter than initially intended. My dad married us and had said that the ceremony would take about forty-five minutes. As Jon and I were walking back up the aisle afterward, we noticed that the clock on the wall said 12:15 (the ceremony started at noon) and we thought surely the clock was wrong! But, no, the ceremony did indeed only last fifteen minutes. However, everything went smoothly and didn’t seem rushed to us.
Any advice for future bride & grooms? We would say to have fun, all the details work out and there’s no reason to get caught up in them. Also, take some time during the wedding day to make a memory. There is so much happening and it feels like a whirlwind. Whether it’s something funny or a tender moment, take a little time to imprint it in your mind to remember for years to come.
What was your favorite part about working with Mabyn Ludke Photography? Mabyn is very professional and personable. She had some great ideas about how to do things during the ceremony and reception. Since I didn’t have a wedding coordinator, there were a few timing details I needed help with and she knows how weddings work! It was also fun to be adventurous with her and take some photos in the rain.

Hair: Bella Capelli Hair Studio, Estes Park, CO//Makeup Artist: Bella Capelli Hair Studio, Estes Park, CO//Dress Designer & Store Location: Augusta Jones for Kleinfeld Manhattan, but I got it at a discount store in Virginia!//Jewelry: Rustic Gem on Etsy.com//Veil or Hair accessories: Veil – borrowed from sister-in-law, hair accessories – DebbyHoffmanBridal on etsy.com//Shoes: Nordstrom and DebbyHoffmanBridal on etsy.com//Bridesmaids Dresses: David’s Bridal in Clover//Grooms Attire: Men’s Wearhouse//Ceremony Venue: Ponder Chapel at the YMCA of the Rockies, Estes Park, CO//Reception Venue: Walnut Room at the YMCA of the Rockies, Estes Park, CO//Florist: Blooms, Estes Park, CO//Caterer: YMCA of the Rockies, Estes Park, CO
Cake: Schmidt’s Bakery, Loveland, CO//Invitations & Stationary: Anna Griffin kit from Michaels

Ruth & Jon’s Love Story