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A Gay Wedding Windfall for New York

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William769 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:28 AM
Original message
A Gay Wedding Windfall for New York

Florist Joe Rizzo says gay couples have snapped up his rainbow arrangements


When the New York Senate voted to legalize same-sex marriage on June 24, Michael Watts rushed to celebrate at the Stonewall Inn in Manhattan, birthplace of the gay rights movement. The next morning, after a more sober assessment of the news, he bought advertisements in three gay publications for his catering business. Congratulations New York! Its time to start planning, read the ads for Cocktail Caterers, the company Watts founded in 2005 with his domestic partner. Since then the company has received 50 inquiries about feeding nuptial guests, up from three in all of 2010. People are realizing, Hello, theres a market in this,  says Watts.

As thousands of gay couples have lined up to exchange vows in New York, theyve been courted by florists, caterers, event planners, and other businesses trying to capitalize on the new market of same-sex brides and grooms. Even the Manhattan Clerks office, which issues marriage licenses, has started selling wine stoppers and coffee mugs adorned with two grooms or two brides in its gift shop. There are no rules with same-sex ceremonies, says David Beahm, who plans high-end parties, including the nuptials of Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones in 2000. Most grandmothers havent been to a gay wedding.

New York may reap $310 million over the next three years from license fees, taxes, and tourism related to same-sex weddings, according to a May report by four New York state senators. Morgan Stanley (MS) Chairman John Mack, Goldman Sachs (GS) Chief Executive Officer Lloyd Blankfein, and other Wall Street executives argue that legalization was necessary for the state to remain an economic leader. As other places extend marriage rights regardless of sexual orientation, it will become increasingly difficult to recruit the best talent if New York cannot offer the same benefits and protections, the business leaders wrote in an open letter in April urging legalization of same-sex unions.

Joe Rizzo, who has owned Langdon Florist in Lower Manhattan for 28 years, predicts hell provide flowers for about 125 weddings this year, up from the 100 or so he expected before the change in the law. Gay couples have snapped up rainbow-colored arrangements for the occasions, some of dyed roses, others a mlange of blossoms that span the spectrum from red gingers to yellow mums to purple gillyflower. The arrangements hit it right on the nose as far as expressing gay pride, says Rizzo.

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/a-gay-wedding-wind...
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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:31 AM
Response to Original message
1. Fabulous! Nt
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mikeytherat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:35 AM
Response to Original message
2. As a wedding musician, whose band plays R&B, funk and disco, I think this is beyond fabulous!
When asked by an agent if we would be comfortable playing a gay wedding, our reply was: "Cool people who love our style of music and want to celebrate while having a great time? When can we book the first one?"

mikey_the_rat
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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:36 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. Fortunately you could book stuff in DC or Delaware
will make great day trip gigs!
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mikeytherat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:38 AM
Response to Reply #2
7. We're based in Richmond and are already booking a few gay weddings in DC!
mikey_the_rat
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William769 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:39 AM
Response to Reply #2
8. It would not break my heart to see Disco make a comeback.
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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:35 AM
Response to Original message
3. It goes legal Jan 1st in Delaware. Rehobeth Beach is predicting a major windfall
of all the people who want to get married there!
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William769 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:37 AM
Response to Reply #3
6. Great to hear!
I did not know that. :blush:

"Liberty and Independence"
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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 10:05 AM
Response to Reply #6
13. Unfortunately it's just Union and not Marriage. We have a damn DOMA in our constitution
Getting that out is going to take years to happen and our governor didn't want to make people wait. So he made sure the law was written perfectly clear that unions were 100% equal to marriage except the word.

BTW you can thank Christine O'Donnell for this law and medicinal marijuana passing. Her campaign was such poison on the GOP in our state that we actually picked up the extra state seats needed to overcome the block and get this to happen.
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Tatiana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:37 AM
Response to Original message
5. I love it! LOL
I can finally say I planned and attend my first gay wedding. The event was perfectly beautiful and we did use several rainbow floral arrangements. I bawled like a baby through the whole thing but the grooms were glowing.

I hope many more couples share a lifetime of wedded bliss.
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William769 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:41 AM
Response to Reply #5
9. +1.
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Not Me Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:50 AM
Response to Original message
10. I live in Orlando, FL and am being married next weekend in Rochester NY
I have family in upstate NY, so it was a good destination anyway, but we estimate when all is said and done (travel, hotels, reception, rehearsal dinner, etc.) we will have contributed almost $25K to the Upstate NY economy.
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William769 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:52 AM
Response to Reply #10
11. Congratulations!
Edited on Fri Oct-21-11 10:04 AM by William769


EDit: to add
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beac Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 09:57 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. Auguri, auguri! Buona Fortuna to you and your groom.
Hurray for love and New York!
:applause:
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ZombieHorde Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 10:59 AM
Response to Reply #10
14. Awesome! nt
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Habibi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 11:25 AM
Response to Reply #10
16. Cool!
Hope you and your new spouse have time to visit some of our Finger Lakes wineries, too!
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Not Me Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-22-11 08:10 AM
Response to Reply #16
17. Actually, that's the plan
We are staying at Belhurst Castle, and plan to visit a number of wineries.
I love Dr. Konstatin Frank's white wines.
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Habibi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-22-11 07:01 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. Dr. Frank's wines are the best in the region, imo!
Oh, have a wonderful time!
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Initech Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-21-11 11:15 AM
Response to Original message
15. My brother went to a gay wedding last year - he said the food was the best he's ever had.
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