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A Pro’s-Eye-View of a Gay Marriage Milestone in Nevada

breaking news nevadaWe first received word on October 7, 2014 that Nevada and Idaho were officially marriage equality states, with our local news quickly following that the first same-sex marriage licenses would start being issued at 2pm on October 8 in Clark County at the Marriage Bureau. The team and I rallied the Las Vegas wedding community to come together to welcome same sex marriage to Las Vegas.

When planning Monifah and Terez’s wedding, one of our challenges was finding wedding professionals who would support their marriage so for me, it was imperative that our wedding community come together quickly and make it clear we were allies. So we came with signs and balloons to both celebrate and support this historic moment with the local LGBTQ community. 

Unsettling news came at 7:30 am on the morning of the 8th, however, with the announcement that the U.S. Supreme Court had put a stop to same-sex marriages in both of the states, at least temporarily. Our wedding support group was then on hold until further news was released. 

Around 11:00 am that same day, the Supreme Court announced that they had mistakenly blocked the start of same sex marriage in Nevada when the Court of Appeals in San Francisco overturned the bans on same-sex marriage in Idaho and Nevada. Idaho was the first to ask the Supreme Court for the delay, but Nevada planned to continue on with the issuing of the same sex marriage license. The order was an error that the justice corrected with a second order later that morning. 

nevada marriage supporters

I regrouped our team of Las Vegas wedding professionals and we went down to the bureau to celebrate and watch the first few same-sex couples receive their marriage licenses at 2:00pm.

Several couples were lined up and the press was surrounding the couples, many of whom had amazing stories to share with the media on how they have been waiting for many years for the opportunity to wed their loved one and receive the same rights as heterosexual married couples. 

nevada marriage bureauBut, 2:00 pm quickly came and went, and an hour-and-a-half later, all of us were still standing around to see the first couple receive their marriage license. Nothing had been issued.

As we all stood in the bureau, it was upsetting to see all of the heterosexual couples receiving their marriage license within minutes, while all the same sex couples stood along to the side, waiting patiently to receive their marriage licenses. At that time, Nevada officials had decided to hold off on issuing the marriage license until the legalities were settled. And, again we were left on hold….and it was back to the waiting game.

Finally, on Thursday October 9, at 5:00 pm Clark County announced that gay marriage licenses would be issued, allowing same-sex marriages to the marriage capital of the United States!

Over a dozen couples received their licenses there, and a few of the couples wed there on the marriage license bureau steps. This was an epic moment for our state and particularly for our city. We were all thrilled to be a part of history and to celebrate with these wonderful couples! 

Brit Bertino

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About The Author

Wedding planner, Brit BertinoSince opening her doors in 2002, Brit Bertino CSEP has become one of the most sought after wedding producers in the industry.