Equal Rights Washington — “Brendan Taga and Jesse Page tie the legal knot! Jesse is a bank manager and Brendan works at the Seattle University School of Law. They were one of the first 6 same-sex couples to get a marriage license in Seattle!”
It’s a Sunday of love — and legally binding agreements — around Seattle and Washington State. We’ll have coverage of the community wedding ceremony held at 1111 Harvard Ave’s Seattle First Baptist at 2 PM this afternoon. Information on the day’s ceremonies at City Hall and parties at the Paramount and on Capitol Hill is here. In the meantime, here are a few glimpses of some of the first gay and lesbian couples in the state to tie the knot. Congratulations.
King County reports a big turnout for licenses so expect more weddings over the coming 60 days. You’ll also find a bit more information about Sarah and Emily Cofer, the couple that took the historical first vows early Sunday morning.
Equal Rights Washington — “12:01 AM Weddings Starting in Washington State!!! History!!!”
First weddings of same-sex couples planned just after midnight tonight at King County Courthouse
In the three days since a new marriage equality law went into effect, King County has issued an unprecedented 623 marriage licenses. A special licensing event concluded today at the Recorder’s Office, with 63 couples receiving marriage licenses. Marcus Overall and Cassidy McCray of Auburn were the final couple processed, just before the office closed at 4:30 p.m.
“I could not be more enthusiastic and proud of our effort to meet the demand of this historic three-day service event,” said Norm Alberg, director of the King County Records and Licensing Services Division. “We executed a very complex plan to meet unprecedented demand – and from the feedback it appears we exceeded our customers’ expectations.”
The Recorder’s Office will resume its normal schedule on Monday, Dec. 10. In addition, couples will be able to obtain marriage licenses at King County Community Service Centers beginning on Monday. For a list of Community Service Center locations and hours of operation, visit www.kingcounty.gov/CSC.
“I want to thank our Recorder’s Office staff, the other amazing professionals and leadership across the Department of Executive Services, as well as the outpouring of support from our more than 150 volunteers,” added Alberg. “This is a terrific example of King County truly demonstrating its values and vision – of being a diverse and dynamic community, where all people have the opportunity to thrive.”
First wedding of same-sex couple tonight at 12:01 a.m. in the King County Courthouse
Sarah and Emily Cofer will be the first same-sex couple to legally marry at the King County Courthouse. King County Superior Court Judge Mary Yu will perform the ceremony tonight at 12:01 a.m. at the Courthouse located at 516 Third Ave. in Seattle.
Sarah and Emily have been together for more than ten years. In 2010, they had a commitment ceremony in Hawaii with their close friends and family. Nine months ago, the couple had a baby girl, and Judge Yu performed the second parent adoption.
Also getting married tonight at the Courthouse is Brendon Taga and Jesse Page. They were the second couple to receive a marriage license from King County Executive Dow Constantine when the marriage equality law took effect on Thursday morning.
Online wedding celebration The City of Seattle is making it easy to check in on the fun at City Hall from afar:
We have also set up a Flickr group to capture wedding photos, at http://www.flickr.com/groups/marriedinseattle/
To share your photos, click “Join this Group” at the top of the page. Once you have joined, an “Add Photos” link will appear at the top of the page.
If you don’t already have a Flickr account, you can sign into flickr for free with an existing Yahoo, Google, or Facebook account. Watch Sunday’s Celebrations events online
You can follow the day’s progress by watching livestreams of City Hall lobby and of the procession of new married couples exiting City Hall towards the plaza.
We will collect stories and photos from the event and post them to our blog. Follow along to hear stories from happy couples and their family and friends.
Sunday’s event is expected to draw an unusually high level of media attention. We’re going to collect reactions from across the Internet–from folks here in Seattle to those watching the historic day from afar.
We have twitter feeds at the homepage of Married.Seattle.gov displaying tweets from the Seattle event and from elsewhere in the State. If you plan to tweet, be sure to use the hash tag “MEdayWA.”
UPDATE: Here are scenes from Harvard Ave’s celebration at Seattle First Baptist where friends and family gathered for a group wedding to mark the first day of legally recognized gay marriage in the state. Truth be told, they know what they’re doing with the gay wedding thing at 1111 Harvard Ave where same-sex ceremonies have been performed since 1979 and lead pastor Tim Phillips was an outspoken supporter of R-74.
The Sunday afternoon ceremony was lead by Phillips and minister Craig Darling and included choir performances — and more than a few happy tears.
All images are by Alex Garland for CHS. We’ve posted even more on our Facebook page.