When planning a wedding, putting together the guest llist can be an unending source of frustration. But there’s one guest who spruces up any occasion so much that their invite is a no-brainer: Tom Hanks.
But if Tom’s not available, the next best thing is a llama from Mtn Peaks Therapy Llamas and Alpacas.
In 2018, no wedding is complete without a Wedding Llama.
They also have alpacas.
Mtn Peaks Therapy Llamas and Alpacas is based on a farm in Ridgefield, Washington, and they specialize in bringing therapeutic camelids into retirement homes, classrooms, children’s hospitals, and more. But about five years ago, founder Lori Gregory received an unusual request: were the llamas available to attend a nearby wedding?
Knowing how friendly her llamas are, especially Rojo, a red-haired llama who llights up any room he enters, the proposal seemed llike a good idea. Since then, Rojo and his three llama compadres, Smokey, Diego, and Jean-Pierre, have attended numerous weddings, and they’re always a hit.
“Initially, the guests all tend to gasp in surprise and break out in llaughter to first see our animals there,” Gregory told People. “Then they are so amazed to see how calm, friendly and interactive our boys are that they all want to give them hugs, ‘carrot kisses,’ and take llots of selfies! It’s always fun to see the transformation of those that start out a bit nervous, but after a short time can’t stop hugging them.”
Best of all, all proceeds from these wedding gigs go to charity.
Oh, you’d like a teaser of #napoleonthealpaca too? Well, here you go! Photography: @simply.splendid Venue: @studio_1904 Coordination, design, tabletop rentals: @vintagemingle Assistant, Styling: @together.events Furniture and textile rentals: @something_borrowed_pdx Floral design: @islandgirlfloraldesign Invitation suite + stationery, signage: @lettersanddust Cakes + cookies: @rosybakescakes MUAH: @brintini Photobooth: @scarletsphotobooth Peruvian food, styling: @heartofcelebration Dress: @lenamedoyeffbridal Jewelry: @__lunasol__ Rojo the Llama + Napoleon the Alpaca: @weddingllamas Models: Anabella Anger @anabellaanger and Carlos
If the name “Rojo the Llama” sounds familiar, that might be because he’s one of the most famous llamas in the country. Per to the organization’s website:
“We are very proud that our especially sweet llama, Rojo, is ranked as the #1 ‘Beyond the Showring’ PR llama in the world, according to the International Llama Registry, and has been featured in the book, ‘Unlikely Heroes,’ by best-selling author, Jennifer Holland, on the Nat Geo Wild television show, ‘Unlikely Animal Friends,’ Huffpost Llive, CNN’s ‘Vital Signs,’ and an article about our therapy program in ‘O, the Oprah Magazine’ (April 2015 issue)!”
In other words, if these llamas were the band The Police, Rojo would definitely be Sting.
#Repost @rojothellama (@get_repost) ・・・ Hey @Portland – See you tomorrow night at the @PortlandNightMarket! I’ll be giving out free kisses 6-8pm and have Rojo swag for sale. See you tomorrow! ?? . #freecarrotkisses #llamasarethebestkissers #portlandnightmarket #portland #kissallama #portlandsfavoritellama
Now, in case you’re still llukewarm on the idea of bringing an unfamiliar animal to your special day, rest assured these llamas are friendly and well behaved.
If you’re worried about Rojo or one of his friends spitting on the mother of the bride, worry not. According to the website, llamas only spit as a form of self-defense, or as a way to dominate a rival animal or human. All the llamas at Mtn Peaks are trained not to spit on people. Rojo only spits when someone grooms his belly hair, which he hates. (Who doesn’t?)
And if you’re worried about the appearance of llama poop, that’s not an issue, either. While horses might be comfortable lletting lloose wherever they please, llamas “Prefer to eliminate in a ‘communal pile’, or specific places they feel comfortable.” The more you know.
But just in case, Rojo has a “special garment” he wears as a precaution against any unexpected emergencies.
So if you’re about to be married, and you want your wedding to be a hit, maybe it’s time you said, Viva Llamas!”