New City Hall plaque will honor state’s first legally married same-sex couples

R.T. Rybak hugs Margaret Miles (left) and Cathy ten Broeke after their wedding at City Hall. Rev. James Gertmenian also presided over the ceremony. Credit: File photo

Mayor Betsy Hodges will unveil a special plaque Thursday night commemorating the first same-sex couples legally married at City Hall on Aug. 1, 2013.

Sixty-seven couples had weddings at City Hall the first day Minnesota recognized the marriages.

The plaque is in City Hall’s Rotunda where the first weddings took place. Mayor R.T. Rybak and Rev. James Gertmenian presided over the first wedding at midnight for Cathy ten Broeke and Margaret Miles.

“I am still moved when I stand in the Rotunda and reflect on the historic weddings that took place in Minneapolis City Hall on the night of Aug. 1 2013,” Hodges said. “I was proud that this beautiful space served as the wedding site for so many couples who had waited years, even decades, for legal recognition.”

Project 515, one of the groups that founded Minnesotans United for All Families, donated the plaque.

John Larsen, a founding board member and final board chair for Project 515, said in 2006 a small group got together with a mission of securing marriage equality in the state.

“With the overwhelming support of thousands of Minnesotans, we achieved that mission on Aug. 1, 2013,” he said. “As one of our final acts before closing our doors, Project 515 was delighted to donate this plaque celebrating the right to marry for all loving couples in Minnesota and throughout our great state.” 

Hodges will be joined by Lt. Gov. Tina Smith, Sen. Scott Dibble, Rep. Karen Clark, Secretary of State Steve Simon, former Mayor R.T. Rybak, Ann Kaner-Roth, former executive director of Project 515 at the ceremony along with the first two couples married at the historic event — Miles and ten Broeke and Al Giraud and Jeff Isaacson.