Dozens of same-sex couples in Australia celebrated the recent “Yes” vote with multiple “midnight marriage” ceremonies across the oceanic island continent.
Last month, the Australian parliament made same-sex marriage legal, following a national survey which returned 61 percent favorability among voters. The legislation was passed in parliament one month after lengthy debates.
The passage of the historic law affords couples, who were ineligible for the conditional exemption, the opportunity to legalize their unions.
A pair of Australian athletes, Luke Sullivan and Craig Burns, were among those who cemented their union by exchanging vows late Monday in a small ceremony in New South Wales.
“My Instagram direct messages have blown up with people I have never met - I don't know who [they] are - just sending love and congratulations, it's really touching,” Sullivan told the Australian Broadcasting Corp.
"Equality, where we can get married, is a huge step forward for Australia," Sullivan added. “We're too old for all the fuss.”
While Melbourne couple, Diana and Deanne Ribeiro, wed in the wee hours of Tuesday morning – one minute after midnight – in an intimate gathering.
“It was just magical,” Diana expressed to the Special Broadcasting Service. “We’re just so excited to be equal like everyone else in Australia,” Deanne added.
Australia joins the more than 20 other nations which allow same-sex weddings.
Financial institution ANZ bank reviewed the economic returns of the “Yes” decision and subsequent nuptials, forecasting that same-sex ceremonies could inject as much as $510 million into the local economy this year.