Wedding in rural Texas county includes tractor, chainsaw collections

Lea Ann Goertz Lee
 |  Special to the Advertiser

Walking into the reception space for Benjamin Till and Tricha Porter’s wedding on Nov. 6 at St. Mary’s Parish Hall in String Prairie, the first clue that this was going to be a one-of-a-kind celebration was the pool table placed under the pavilion outside the entrance to the hall. 

If guests were not up for a game of pool before dinner, they could peruse the multiple tables lined with Till’s antique chainsaw collection or walk into the adjacent field to see a tractor show. 

Many of the tractors on display were from Till’s personal collection and some were on loan from friends belonging to the South Texas Wheel Spinners and Crank Twisters Antique Farm Equipment Club. Speaking of tractors, Roy Baker was on hand to provide delicious homemade ice cream churned by his tractor-powered ice cream maker. And all of this was before Santa and Mrs. Claus arrived.

Pat Baker, the groom’s cousin, and her husband Bill dressed in their full Mr. and Mrs. Claus regalia and brought their sleigh and backdrop for photo opportunities. 

“Bill and Pat were joking about it, saying they could do Santa (they travel around the state professionally, spreading holiday cheer each year) at our wedding,” Till said. “I thought about it and decided that would be perfect. It would help my friends who have kids. We wanted lots of activities for everyone.”

It’s not surprising that this young couple were thinking of others, as Till is well-known around Rockne for lending a helping hand to the elderly or anyone who needs assistance. He is also an Eagle Scout and created an arbor for Sacred Heart Church’s prayer garden as one of his projects. 

The wedding ceremony took place at St. Mary’s Catholic Church and was officiated by Deacon Alvin Frerich. Music was provided by Mark Lee, Steve Meuth, Nelda Thompson and Patsy Meuth. 

After guests enjoyed a catered meal of chicken-fried steak by Alan Grohman and Circle G Catering, the bride and groom gave heartfelt speeches and thanked everyone for sharing in their special day. Till thanked his classmates from Texas State Technical College, who came from as far away as East Texas, Florida and Utah, and his parents and aunt Tina Till for all of their help with the wedding. 

The couple also pointed out the special cake toppers on the wedding cakes, made by Shirley Ellis, which included vintage toppers from the groom’s parents, David and Charlene Till; grandparents, Alfred and Mary Ann Till; and best friend, the late Jerome Henzen, and his wife Sherly. Till and Porter also had their own topper, a couple on a tractor, of course. 

One special gift was a handmade quilt with a rustic, autumnal country theme made especially for the couple by Linda Masur, the groom’s cousin. The quilt was on display, along with the grand champion ribbon it won from the Rockdale Fair Association. Masur also wrote a very special dedication to go along with it, including this sentiment: 

“Tricha and Benjamin, you chose each other because y’all accept each other as you are. Through the years, you will have rough spots and hardships – tackle each one as a bump in the road of life and keep going and loving each other. Remember the love and happiness of this day, pray, and keep plowing through.” 

Congratulations on a wedding like no other and best wishes to a very gracious, generous and genuine couple. 

Rockne Market Day

The fifth annual Rockne Market Day will be held Nov. 27 at Holtman Hall in Rockne from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

Market Day features talented local vendors selling handmade crafts, including woodworking, jewelry, leather goods, artwork, baked goods, hand-dyed fabrics, holiday items, canned goods, metal yard art, antiques and bargains. R and D Catering will be selling brisket tacos for breakfast and barbecue lunch plates. Contact [email protected] or 512-988-0134 for more information or visit its Facebook page at