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Same-Sex Weddings Begin in Vermont

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Bill Slimback and Bob Sullivan of New York became the first same-sex couple to wed under the new marriage law that took effect in Vermont on Tuesday. The men were married at 12:01 a.m. in Waterbury.

Slimback, 38, and Sullivan, 41, partners for 17 years, were married in a 17-minute ceremony at the Moose Meadow Lodge, where co-owner Greg Trulson, who is also a justice of the peace, presided. The union will be honored in their home state of New York, which recognizes out-of-state same-sex marriages, although same-sex weddings performed in state have no legal standing.

"We've waited a long time to do this -- basically, our whole lives," Slimback said, according to the Associated Press. "We've been waiting for a chance to actually solidify it."

In April, Vermont became the first state to legalize same-sex marriage through the legislative process without first being ordered to do so by the court. Despite the historic action, city and town officials did not report a surge of advance interest in same-sex marriage licenses ahead of the September 1 start date. Some attribute it to the fact that civil unions have been legal for same-sex couples in the state since 2000.

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