A month after California began issuing marriage licenses to
same-sex couples once again, gay couples can get married, get divorced and even
get cold feet.
A planned mass "Rainbow Wedding" ceremony at a gay community center in San Bernardino ended Saturday with the officiant being stood up at the altar when no one showed up more than an hour after the ceremony was scheduled to be held.
"It's a statement about equality," said P.J. Seleska, who runs Inland Empire Pride's Center on Waterman Avenue. "We had a big celebration" the night the Supreme Court struck down Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act "and kicked around ideas."
The center serves an impoverished region of the city, and includes a food pantry and other services to help its largely poor clientele.
"It's so expensive to get married out there, are you kidding me?" Seleska said.
Marriage licenses alone cost $88 in San Bernardino County.
"Now I understand why people run out to Vegas," Seleska said.
The center also planned to give donated presents to any couples who turned up to get married on Saturday.
Christine Sanborn, the youth adviser for Inland Empire Pride, was standing by to serve as an officiant. She's an ordained minister through the Universal Life Church.
"We had a couple of people who said they and their partners wanted to get married today," she said.
Even though the planned mass wedding didn't happen, the center and Sanborn will be available for weddings in the future.
"We don't know if we'll have all the trappings and garb" that decorated the center's lobby on Saturday, Seleska said, "but we'll spiff the place up."
For more information about Inland Empire Pride's Center or same- sex marriages at the center, call 909-754-3643.
Note: The Inland Empire Pride name and its leadership are in dispute.
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