Slideshow

Mallory & Ryan Kunz: A Little Bit Country

Withrow Ballroom and Event Center — October 16, 2010

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  • Photos by Shelley Paulson Photography
    Ryan and Mallory pose near an old farm in Lake Elmo they had admired for years.
  • Photos by Shelley Paulson Photography
    Helzberg Diamonds rings with a pumpkin hand-glazed by the bride.
  • Photos by Shelley Paulson Photography
    Antique glass lanterns with local cornstalks.
  • Photos by Shelley Paulson Photography
    The sign outside Withrow Ballroom, with fall display by Paul Bergmann (owner of the ballroom).
  • Photos by Shelley Paulson Photography
    Boots and lace, two of the bride's favorite things.
  • Photos by Shelley Paulson Photography
    The couple's son, Jack, a huge fan of John Deere tractors and crops.
  • Photos by Shelley Paulson Photography
    Mallroy's sister Natalie holding a small junior bridesmaid bouquet.
  • Photos by Shelley Paulson Photography
    "Popcorn on the cob" favors.
  • Photos by Shelley Paulson Photography
    Shotgun shells (attached to the back of the newlyweds' truck), passed on by Mallory's matron of honor.
  • Lace motif cake by Fresh Fields Bakery.

If you had to choose one word to describe Mallory and Ryan, it would be laid-back. The couple, who grew up near Stillwater, are happier spending a day shooting trap than shopping at the mall. In fact, when Ryan proposed to Mallory in 2009, it was after a day spent shooting trap together and splitting wood at a friend’s farm. Mallory was exhausted, but Ryan talked her into stopping at their favorite bar, Sal’s, where he proposed.

When the couple, who met in 2007 through mutual friends and have a 2-year-old son together, started planning their wedding, they wanted to keep it personal. “We wanted a casual country-themed wedding,” says Mallory, who grew up on a 90-acre horse farm. “We tried to make it as laid-back as possible.” That applied to the wedding as well as to the planning process. “Even my bachelor party and her bachelorette party were laid-back,” Ryan says. The women went trap shooting (of course), while the men shot sporting clays and held a bonfire and barbecue at Ryan’s brother’s house.

For wedding guests, the couple shared their comfy vibe early on, through invitations that Mallory, a freelance graphic designer, created. Their central image, a pair of cowboy boots, complemented the printed phrase “Bring your boots.” And bring them guests did, showing up with cowboy hats and boots to the rural fall wedding. After the ceremony at the Church of St. Peter in North St. Paul—where most of the groom’s family has married—the happy couple swapped their dress shoes for boots in the parking lot.

In keeping with the wedding’s “romantic country” theme, the table settings at Withrow Ballroom and Event Center included bouquets of wheat, flickering candles in mason jars, vintage-style lanterns, and glazed pumpkins. Guests enjoyed a buffet of comfort foods such as beef stroganoff, followed by apple pie squares from a nearby orchard. In a fitting touch, Mallory’s childhood farm even made an appearance: Ryan, a carpenter, handmade the card box (for gifts) using chicken wire and fencing from the beloved family farm.

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