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There’s no place like home

Tanner and Brooke Stindtman are wed on the family farm

January 13, 2019
Kevin Mertens - Register Staff Writer ( , Faribault County Register

Dreams. They come true in fairy tales. Sometimes they come true in real life.

In 2002, when he was just nine years old, Tanner Stindtman announced that he was going to get married at his family's farm. His parents, Troy and Michele, along with their three children, Danica, Tanner and Trenton, had purchased their farm in 2001. It is located just out of town on the south side of Blue Earth.

When Tanner graduated in 2011 from Blue Earth Area High School he joined the Marine Corps and his mother figured she was safe, that the farm would not factor into his wedding plans.

Article Photos

The Stindtman family poses for a photograph in front of the barn they restored for their son’s wedding. Tanner Stindtman and Brooke Chavie were married at the Stindtman farm. The family all pitched in to help get the barn ready and the couple held their ceremony at the farm in September of 2018.

"I thought he would get married somewhere else, maybe have a destination wedding," his mother explains.

Apparently the desire to get married on the farm was not forgotten by Tanner. He became engaged on April 7, 2017. He and his fiance, Brooke Chavie, from Faribault, came home for Memorial Day weekend and announced they were getting married at the farm. Not only were they going to get married at the farm but they also wanted to have the ceremony in the barn.

Even the way the couple met almost has a fairy tale quality. It was Tanner's sister Danica who introduced Brooke to her brother.

However, even fairy tales and dreams sometimes require a lot of time and work to make them become reality. And the barn needed a lot of work.

Michele Stindtman says, "I told them, OK, you better get your boots on and your shovels out and get started, and we did."

The family had a lot of work to do to get the farm, barn and the yard ready for the wedding, and they had less than 18 months to get the job done.

There were many trips made between Sioux Falls, where the engaged couple lived, and Blue Earth. Everybody chipped in to make sure the work got done, according to Michele Stindtman.

"It was a long year and a half because we pretty much did all of the work ourselves," explains Stindtman.

According to Stindtman, the barn was thought to have been built in the 1940s. It was in good shape structurally, having had a new roof put on a few years earlier. A second story deck was added to the front of the barn. Troy, with his experience at the local lumberyard, made sure everything was built up to code. Though it was hard work, it was also enjoyable.

"When we were building I was more in my element than when I am sitting at my desk," Michele Stindtman notes.

All of the hard work paid off and resulted in a new venue for couples to consider when making their wedding plans. The Stindtmans call their business MTS Farm and Events.

The first wedding held at the site was Tanner and Brooke's ceremony and it was truly a family affair. Michele Stindtman's sister, Patty Ahrens, was the officiant and her niece, Brianna Roegiers, of Sioux Falls, was the photographer. And this does not include the other family members who helped with decorating and other chores which needed to be done.

While many moms involved in their children's wedding are stressed out, Stindtman says that was not the case for her. She did take a week off ahead of the wedding and was busy with hammers and drills making sure everything was ready for the big day. A lot of time was spent making sure the grounds and the lawn were in excellent condition.

"I was not even anxious on the wedding day and the nice thing was Brooke was not nervous at all, she had no outrageous expectations," Michele Stindtman says. "The only thing to worry about was the weather, it had been so hot the weekend before the wedding, but the weekend of Tanner and Brooke's wedding the weather was just perfect."

The ceremony was held upstairs in the loft where the couple recited their own vows. The backdrop of the barn and the gorgeous sunset on display provided for some beautiful photos and wonderful memories, according to Michele Stindtman.

"It was very relaxing and I was very excited to be getting married at my future husband's farm, it was a magical day to say the least," Brooke Stindtman explains. "Tanner's family put a lot of hard work into getting things ready."

The newly married couple makes their home in Sioux Falls. Tanner is a Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) agent. Brooke works with parole enforcement.

"We joke that Tanner puts them in jail and Brooke tries to get them out," Michele Stindtman says.

Two more weddings were held later in 2018, after her son's wedding, Stindtman said, and more are planned for this year. Tanner has encouraged his mother by telling her she will need something to do when she retires.

The Stindtmans look forward to hosting more weddings this year. They enjoy the opportunity to help couples celebrate their special day. They do offer different options for those wishing to utilize their facilities. A one-day rental is available or someone could utilize the space for the weekend. Contracts are signed and cleanup is the responsibility of the people renting the facilities. The venue is also available for other events such as graduation receptions, birthday parties and family reunions.

Michelle Stindtman also notes she is interested in doing more wedding planning and decorating. She advertises locally, uses Facebook, attends bridal shows and utilizes their website, Stindtman also encourages couples to use local caterers, hair salons, photographers and motels for the weddings held at their farm, and provides information for those services on their website.



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