Lesbian and Transgender

Umbrellas Shield N.Y.'s First Single-Sex Weddings

Friday, July 29, 2011

Same-sex couples lined up outside the City Clerk's Office in Manhattan last Sunday to take advantage of New York's first day of legal marriage for same-sex couples. A few counter protesters were overpowered by the mood of celebration.

NEW YORK (WOMENSENEWS)--New Yorkers showed up to the City Clerk's Office in Manhattan by the hundreds on July 24, the first day that New York's Marriage Equality Act took effect.

Couples arrived as early as 6:30 a.m. for a spot in a line that wrapped around the building twice. Vendors handed out gifts--"Just married" sashes and lei necklaces--while onlookers watched New York make history on the sweltering summer morning.

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New York became the sixth state to legalize single-sex marriage and, due to its large population, has doubled the potential population of same-sex married couples.

Two professional figure skaters, Sarah Zanoli and Marni Halasa, decided to use their talents by dressing up in bright, sparkly leotards and roller skated around the building in support of the LGBT community.

Volunteers handed out sunflowers donated by Hatch Creative Studio, a Manhattan floral shop, with blue ribbons tied to the stems signifying the "something blue" item needed by wedding tradition.

Manhattan Mini Storage distributed coupons for three months of free storage for any newlyweds on that day. "If you don't like gay marriage, don't get gay married," one side of the coupon said.

Among the numerous props and products, the most visible objects were multi-colored umbrellas lining the curb in front of the clerk's office. They added to the festive atmosphere, but their function was not only decorative. It was also defensive.

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