Planning a wedding in the Last Frontier

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Amid all the tragic news of the mass shooting in Las Vegas and despair following hurricane devastation in Puerto Rico and other places, our family was thrilled to have some great news to celebrate.

Our daughter Heather got engaged at Crow Pass in the Chugach Mountains of Alaska, at Raven Glacier. And because both her and her now-fiance Will are television news photographers, the proposal — complete with Will getting down on one knee — was captured in stunning images.

They’ve spent much of the past year hiking to a half-dozen glaciers throughout Alaska.

“Glaciers are our thing,” Heather said. “I think they’re magical.”

It was no surprise, then, when they announced they’ll be getting married on an actual glacier next summer. Guests will slap on ice cleats, grab their poles and hike about a mile to this “magical” spot.

“I think I’ll put in the invitations that people should wear fancy hiking attire,” she told me yesterday. I’m not sure what constitutes fancy hiking attire, but she assured me it’s a thing in Alaska.

They’re also hiring a helicopter and photographer to fly them to the remote Nkik Glacier for wedding portraits.

Heather plans to wear a fur shawl over her wedding dress. She has embraced the Alaskan lifestyle with open arms and has collected quite an assortment of fur apparel, from a fox hood, hat and muff to a qiviut scarf and headband made out of muskox wool. Oh, and sheared beaver earmuffs and a sheepskin jacket!

A few days ago while Heather was on assignment at the Anchorage zoo and was “hanging out” with a wolf, she had someone snap a photo of her hand and engagement ring on the wolf’s head. We all agreed that only in Alaska would there be a wolf available for a photo op!

Because my husband is in the meat business and the Hintzes bring or prepare meat for nearly every family gathering, it also was no surprise when Heather asked, “Daddy, can you bring pulled pork to Alaska?”

Tim is now calculating the best way to transport frozen blocks of pig meat to Alaska. Our other daughter had a roasted whole hog for her wedding reception, so Heather, tongue-in-cheek, further mused: “Could he put a whole hog in a suitcase? Maybe we could fly it as a pet to Alaska, with a one-way ticket.” (She was kidding, I think).

So a little about Will. He’s a wonderful guy who won our hearts immediately. Will was raised in rural Virginia and spent a number of years in the West before venturing to Alaska a few years ago. He and Heather work for the same TV station, but he focuses on long-form video journalism for a show called “Frontiers.” Needless to say, when they post pictures of their hiking excursions on Facebook, the photos are spectacular. And it’s clear they love each other.

Heather told us time and time again, “he’s the nicest guy in the world.” We absolutely concur.

She spent a long time looking for “Mr. Right.” As the saying goes in Alaska, “the odds are good, but the goods are odd,” when it comes to the pool of eligible bachelors. The Last Frontier is a land of extremes, and let’s just say it attracts an eclectic assortment of young men.

This will be a one-of-a-kind wedding; that much we know for sure. What we also know is that Heather is a one-of-a-kind young woman with an adventurous spirit that only Alaska could hold, who has found her perfect “other half,” an equal partner who adores her. That kind of love is sure to melt hearts even in the cold arctic landscape of the Last Frontier.

Features editor Lynnette Hintze may be reached at 758-4421 or lhintze@dailyinterlake.com.

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