Beth Asaro, left, and Joanne Schailey, right, celebrate after exchanging vows as Lambertville mayor David DelVecchio officiates in the first same-sex marriage in Lambertville history at 12:01 a.m. Monday, Oct. 21, 2013 in Lambertville, N.J.
ASBURY PARK, NJ (APP) -- They were pronounced husband and husband, wife and wife.
Shore area same-sex couples eloped early Monday, when gay marriage became legal in New Jersey.
couples married on the steps of the Paramount Theater before a crowd of
about 50 people. It was an historic and emotional moment that brought
tears to some guests as they watched the couples wed under a full moon
in the cold wind.
"It's utterly pure and complete relief to finally be here because it's been a crazy long road," said Karen Nicholson-McFadden after marrying Marcye Nicholson-McFadden, her partner of 24 years.
The Aberdeen women were plaintiffs in the lawsuit that brought same-sex marriage to the state.
tying the knot in Asbury Park on Monday were Councilwoman Amy Quinn and
her partner Heather Jensen, who had a joint ceremony with couple Steven
Brunner and Daniel Baum.
The Rev. Thomas Pivinski officiated each wedding and said the state's recognition of gay marriage was long overdue.
think it's wonderful," said Pivinski, who is a retired Catholic priest.
"I am just very grateful that the state has recognized the equality of
In Red Bank, two same-sex couples also took their wedding vows just minutes after midnight.
Zipprich and John Paul Nicolaides, partners of 17 years, were the first
couple to be married in Red Bank. The couple took their vows at 12:05
a.m. before 40 friends and family members.
"We wanted to be first," said Nicolaides, moments after saying "I do."
and Nicolaides filed their application for a marriage license in the
borough at 12:01 a.m. last Friday so that their midnight marriage would
Borough Clerk and Registrar Pam Borgi said she received the new template for same sex marriages licenses at 6:30 Friday evening.
Red Bank Mayor Pasquale "Pat" Menna threw open the doors of Borough Hall in order for the ceremony to take place.
an historic moment," Menna said. "People want to be a part of history.
This is so great that after midnight so many people showed up."
Zipprich, 53, and Nicolaides, 49, were married by Colleen Mahr, the mayor of Fanwood, and also a close friend of the couple.
thought a lot about this moment. These marriages were not possible the
day before, and it was special to bear witness to it," Mahr said.
Zipprich and Nicolaides were married, Mahr married a second couple that
asked that their names not be included in the story.