Laura & John

Winter Ranch Wedding in Colorado


March 29, 2023
Words by Jessie Allen
Photos courtesy of Jamee Photography

Destination weddings are becoming increasingly popular and for good reason – they offer couples a unique opportunity to celebrate their big day in a magical location with their loved ones. One such couple is John and Laura, who chose to tie the knot at Devil’s Thumb Ranch in Tabernash, Colorado. 

The couple met on the first day of new employee orientation at their job, quickly became friends, and started dating a year later. For their wedding, they chose a destination that was special to Laura – the mountains in Winter Park, Colorado. 

Laura and John knew they wanted to get married in the mountains in the winter and have all their family and friends in one place. Devil’s Thumb Ranch was the perfect venue, and the couple fell in love with it after attending a friend’s wedding in the summer. 

“[The summer] was beautiful,” Laura says, “but we knew the snow and wintertime would make it absolutely magical. And, it was!”

John and Laura did several pre-wedding site visits, including a tasting at the venue, and worked closely with their wedding planner to ensure everything ran smoothly. However, they did run into some unexpected issues, including record-breaking storms that closed the mountain pass the Thursday before the wedding, east coast storms that canceled a number of flights, and a new COVID varient. 

“But, thankfully, we worked closely with the venue to ensure safety protocols were met, and we even ordered custom facemasks for people to wear as desired,” the bride says.

With the help of talented friends in their wedding party, John and Laura designed their own stationery suite and created an extra special gift for their guests.

“We also put together welcome bags complete with Liquid IVs, Chapstick, sunscreen, and a note about the effects of high altitude on everything from hydration to sun exposure to alcohol consumption,” the couple says. “It was a fun way to thank guests for coming so far to celebrate with us, while also giving some very important caution for celebrations over 9,000 feet!”

John and Laura decided on an Anglican wedding ceremony, which is rooted in deep tradition and poetic beauty. They also had most of their nieces and nephews walk down the aisle together at the beginning of the ceremony, which was a special way to include them in the celebration.

When it comes to planning a destination wedding, the couple’s best advice is to focus on what is most important to you and maintain perspective when hiccups inevitably happen. The couple talked a lot about what was important to them beyond getting married, and this helped them keep their priorities in check when challenges arose.

“For us, there were many opinions and worries from other people/family,” the couple says, “so having a clear idea of what we as a couple really cared about was helpful to not stress out about things that we knew didn’t matter to us.”

Filled with personal touches, local traditions, and lots of love, John and Laura’s destination wedding at Devil’s Thumb Ranch in Tabernash, Colorado was nothing short of magical.


Vendors: Photographer: Jamee Photography; Wedding Planner: Jenn Blume of The Styled Soiree; Venue: Devil’s Thumb Ranch; Florist: Iva Grace Floral; Stationery: Minted; Hair & Makeup: Clare from Holistic Salon; Gown Designer & Bridesmaid Dresses: BHLDN; Tailor: Anne Thomas Couture; Groom’s Clothing Designer: Knot Standard; Groomsmen Attire: The Black Tux; DJ & Photobooth: Elite Entertainment; Videographer: Pulley Productions

Couple in Punta Cana doing a destination wedding by the ocean
Destination Weddings at Hyatt Zilara and Hyatt Ziva
Hyatt Ziva and Zilara Destination Weddings
Black couple getting married in Jamaica
Jamaica Destination Weddings
Couple in Cancun doing a gazebo destination wedding
White couple getting married in Punta Cana, DR
destination wedding couple throwing rose petals in costa mujeres
Iberostar Weddings

Find a Vendor

Access our list of vendors based on your destination location.