SEATTLE - Same sex couples will be able to legally marry in Washington state for the first time on Sunday. In Seattle, 140 couples will take their vows at City Hall as community members celebrate the historic day on the plaza outside.
Hundreds of marriage licenses have been issued to gay couples in Seattle since Thursday, when King County opened the doors to its auditor's office just after midnight to start distributing marriage licenses. Hundreds of people had lined up hours earlier, snaking around the downtown Seattle building on a chilly December night.
Because the state has a three-day waiting period, the earliest that weddings can take place is Sunday.
Volunteers spent Saturday preparing Seattle City Hall where 140 couples have registered to get married.
As of Saturday evening, an unprecedented 623 couples have registered for marriage licenses in King County.
Diane Butzberger and Amanda Ruff will be the first couple married at City Hall on Sunday. The two have been together 10 years, and got a license Thursday at the King County Administration Building.
The city said that to be married at City Hall on Sunday, couples must have a marriage license issued on Dec. 6 and they must have RSVP'd. The city said on its website that because of limited space, there's only room for the first 140 couples who RSVP'd.
King County Superior Court judges have also volunteered to perform weddings on Sunday at the King County Courthouse. See this post on the Stranger's Blog site for more details.
Organizer Jennifer Zeyl told KIRO 7 Eyewitness News reporter Deborah Horne that she wanted the large public space to feel elegant and intimate for the couples
“So that everybody feels like there’s a beautiful space for them that isn’t someone else’s wedding,” said Zeyl.
Corianton Hale and Keith Bacon told KIRO 7 that this was a special moment for them.
“This makes it legal and official and we’re part of history today, tomorrow, I should say. It’s the final detail that just seals everything up in a tidy little package,” said Bacon.
Hale and Bacon tied the knot last August.
Dani Young and Robin Wyss plan on having their wedding at City Hall Sunday and they said the event is more than being a beautiful space.
“This is really a political celebration and a celebration for all of Washington. And we wanted to be part of that and be as public as possible,” said Wyss.
The weddings will start 10 a.m. Sunday and will be streamed live on kirotv.com.
Get more information about the City of Seattle's plans for weddings at City Hall on the city's website.