2/14/11: Valentine's Day MARRIAGE EQUALITY!

I am proud to support full MARRIAGE EQUALITY for all LGBT couples! It's important to me to be seen & heard in my support for Civil Rights, I want my gay friends to know that I am an ally in the movement to change hearts, minds, and *the law* in favor of recognizing LOVE, and granting gay couples EQUAL RIGHTS. So on Valentine's Day Monday, February 14th, I joined Marriage Equality New York GetEQUAL NY, the Metropolitan Community Church (MCCNY), Queer Rising, and fellow New Yorkers at The Manhattan Marriage Bureau, near City Hall in lower Manhattan, to stand beside Rob Lassegue & Manuel Reyes, as they attemped to file for a marriage license and join the more than 1.2 million couples who have been married there since 1930. We came carrying signs, smiling & showing our love, and demonstrating our commitment to making Marriage Equality a reality. We chanted, shouted, we waved at passing cars, we passed out fliers to people on their way to work. We gathered with pride as Rev. Pat from MCCNY conducted a joint ceremony for a gay couple and a straight couple, demonstrating that LOVE is an equal right! We will continue to speak out, educate, advocate, and protest civil injustice until ALL COUPLES are equated with respect and the same rights under the law. It's wonderful to BELIEVE in gay marriage in your heart, but at this critical time in history, it's also important to DEMONSTRATE your belief by telling your family, friends, co-workers, children, neighbors, and community that you ACTIVELY SUPPORT civil rights for gay couples, and you support MARRIAGE EQUALITY. I especially encourage my straight friends to TAKE A STAND and SHOW UP for gay rights rallies wherever you live! Find your local chapter of the grassroots groups & organizations that are taking actions, and support them. It's important to let your gay friends & family know that you are on their side not just in theory, and not quietly...but with PRIDE! http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/valentines-day-marriage-equality-wedding-in-manhattan/marriage/2011/02/13/17401

2/12/11: Kris & Nic

Kris & Nic were sooo excited to come to NYC for the 1st time to celebrate their true love on Valentine's Day weekend! I met them at their mid-town hotel, Millennium Broadway right off Times Square, and we took a cab to the South East corner of Central Park (where the horse & buggies line up). They choose to have their ceremony on The Gapstow Bridge, which is an easy walk close to the corner of the park. It's a small bridge, and no matter what season, you'll often find a saxophone player there doing Frank Sinatra, classic jazz and of course, "New York, New York!" Just behind the bridge is the Central Park Wollman Skating Rink, which turns into a children's amusement/ride park in summertime. It was cold but bright & sunny, and they cuddled up to keep warm as they shared their vows & rings and emotions. I was happy to take pictures for them so they would have plenty of photos to show off at home to their kids, families, and friends. After the ceremony, they planned on celebrating by going to see their favorite Broadway show: Phantom of the Opera! That is TOTALLY how I celebrate special occasions, too! Love it! It means so much to me to see true love in action. Nic & Kris are so well matched, I feel lucky to be in the presence of such happiness. We signed a souvenir wedding certificate to commemorate the emotional, spiritual, and symbolic significance of joining their lives. And as soon as the wedding license they are entitled to becomes available, *we will sign that, too!* MARRIAGE EQUALITY! With love, Rev. Annie NYC

2/11/11: Trice & Matt

The Boathouse at Central Park with Trice & Matt! When visiting NYC you must come here for drinks/dinner! It's an oasis of elegance in the middle of this bustling city, and they really know how to "do it up" in style! http://www.thecentralparkboathouse.com/

2/5/11: Diana & Jeffrey

When Diana 1st called me on the phone from Florida, we made a great connection. I loved hearing her love story and dream to have a winter wedding in NYC. February did not disappoint--we provided plenty of *snow* for her dream day! Diana & Jeffrey and the wedding party of family & friends arrived in pedicabs. I met them at Bethesda Terrace in Central Park with John McCarthy Bagpiper. Oh, the bagpipe is very moving & emotional, isn't it? We received a lot of attention as folks in the park stopped to listen, take pictures, and appreciate the traditional sounds. Diana was a perfect winter bride in fur headband. She made a dramatic entrance, descending the steps of Bethesda Terrace escorted by her teenage sons. Groom Jeffrey wore a Scottish kilt. The cold temperature didn't stop the tears as Bride & Groom and family beamed with love! In Central Park, it's common to have some onlookers stop & appreciate the site of a wedding. It's inspiring! It's always been my exprience that people are respectful, kind, and considerate when they come across our wedding in the park. In fact, it adds to the happiness of the occasion knowing that we "made their day!" After the ceremony, when it was clear we were finished with formalities and were celebrating and taking pictures, several tourists and photography enthusiasts asked if they could snap our picture. The Bride & Groom said yes--I like to call this having "A New York Moment!" I am so honored to share life-changing moments with couples & families, and days they will remember forever. Just thinking of Diana & Jeffrey brings tears to my eyes. There are some couples you just know will *stay in touch* :) It really was a perfect day! So much love, Rev. Annie NYC

2/4/11: Emma & Tom

Tom & Emma have been a part of each other's lives & families for many years. They share a life together that includes a happy house full of children. Their marriage ceremony marked not the start of a new relationship, but their deep committment to each other and their family. Their private & personal ceremony reflected their mutual respect and the confidence they have in their long-lasting love. They married in a suite at The Ritz Carlton Battery Park, with Emma's mum & brother from the UK as witnesses. The ipod played country music before & after the ceremony.

After the kiss & pronouncement & signing of the license, Emma & Tom
invited me to join them in a toast to their relationship, their children, and their family. It was so nice to smile & chat and have a laugh together! I share their Irish/English roots, and there is something so comforting to me about being with folks from my ancestral home!

Thanks Emma & Tom for making me a part of your family on this very special day in your lives. May the road rise up to meet you, may the wind always be at your back, and until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of his hand :)

With love, Rev. Annie NYC

2/2/11: Sydney & David

Sydney & David were married at home in the company of their parents. Sydney wore snazzy shoes & carried pink roses, which have a romantic history in her family as her father gave her mother pink roses on the day she was born. The closeness of this family & the romantic feelings of this sweet couple filled the room with love, and we were easily moved to tears in the presence of such excitement, happiness, and emotion. Wishing David & Sydney a long and happy life together, and a great wedding celebration party with friends this summer on Long Island! With love, Rev. Annie NYC