Gay New Yorkers Head to Greenwich for Weddings
Posted on June 11, 2009
Filed Under Uncategorized
GREENWICH, Conn. — They wanted a New York wedding. “Our lives are here; our friends are here,” said Janis Castaldi, 56, who lives in Westchester County with Lizz Endrich, the woman she married on May 21.
But New York has not approved same-sex marriage. “It got to the point where it doesn’t look 100 percent good right now. When you have Greenwich, Conn., 20 minutes away, I said, ‘Why are we waiting?’ ”
And so another couple from outside Connecticut made what is becoming a familiar pilgrimage to this border town of wealth and privilege, the first municipality over the state line by Interstate 95 or Metro-North.
From Nov. 12, 2008, the day same-sex marriages became legal in Connecticut, through the end of May, 139 same-sex couples applied for a marriage license and wed in Greenwich. All but three of them were been from out of state, most from New York City, according to Barbara Lowden, the town’s assistant registrar of vital statistics.
The town has the most same-sex marriages in Connecticut; statewide figures through February, the most recent available, showed Greenwich as the wedding spot for one in every five gay couples, though it has only 2 percent of the population.
Best known for its old- and new-money families stretching from the Long Island Sound to its fabled back country, Greenwich has been vexed in the past by its proximity to the border. In 2001, the crowds of people buying tickets for the Powerball lottery game, not available in New York, grew so big that town officials suspended sales for a day.
These days, by contrast, local businesses would like Greenwich’s new wave of toe-dippers to stick around a little longer than they have been. Most couples have a brief ceremony in a Town Hall meeting room or outside on the grounds, then leave immediately for receptions back in New York or honeymoons elsewhere.
Thomas C. Delaney, the general manager of the Hyatt Regency Greenwich, said the hotel had advertised on some gay and lesbian Web sites in hopes of attracting more business. The Hyatt averages 70 weddings a year, he said, but this summer only two same-sex weddings are scheduled so far. “We’d like to have a lot more,” he said.
June, the traditional month for wedding bliss, is coinciden
New York Times
Group Renews Fight for Same-Sex Marriage in California
New England economy could see gay-marriage boost
Gay Couples Forced to Flee US Over Immigration Law
Group Begins Ad Blitz Against Same-Sex Marriage