SACRAMENTO, CA - Nikola Simmersbach and Diana Luiz became the first Sacramento couple to wed after the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals lifted its same-sex marriage stay Friday, allowing same-sex couples to wed.
Luiz and Simmersbach said they promised each other that when the opportunity came, they would rush to the courthouse.
"It was like, we ran out and then Diana had to go back and get our rings," Simmersback said as the couple arrived at the Sacamento County Recorder's Office late Friday afternoon.
The couple had been domestic partners for five years, but felt frustrated at being unable to have a legal marriage.
The sudden lifting of the stay, expected to be at least three weeks away, took the couple off-guard.
"This isn't really what we planned on wearing," said Simmersbach as the couple went through the paperwork at the recorder's office.
Then it was into a chapel, crowded with friends, well-wishers and media.
"We heard Nikola and Diana were coming down here and we had to be there. They've been waiting so long," long-time friend Kate Moore said.
Luiz shook with the excitement of the moment, tears sometimes rolling from her eyes.
"Five years fighting on the capitol steps for this moment," said Luiz, her voice trembling.
The minister began the ceremony.
"Do you promise to love, comfort and honor..." the minister continued as media cameras snapped, providing a staccato background as the couple exchanged vows. "Through sickness and health. In prosperity and adversity..."
The couple eagerly added their "I do's." And the rings had made it in time for the service.
"With this ring, I thee wed."
And then finally, "I now pronounce you married," as the wedding guests broke into applause and the couple kissed.
"It feels amazing, it feels amazing," Simmersbach said, as the couple showed off their rings.
As the couple walked outside to the street they hugged and kissed to the cheers of onlookers and friends.
Sacramento County Recorder Craig Kramer said 19 marriage licenceses and 11 wedding ceremonies were performed Friday evening. He said he expects and even bigger crowd on Monday.