Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Niagara Falls, NY - the Same Sex Marriage Capital of the World?

Finally! New York State passes a bill to legalize same-sex marriage. It was a long time coming, and I, for one, am ecstatic that the senate saw the light. Passage had been close before, and I was surprised when it failed a couple of years ago. Now, it has been passed, and I can rejoice.

Never one to miss an "opportunity", Bill has been trying to figure out another way for New Yorkers to benefit from this bill. Besides the obvious one of allowing gay citizens the right to be recognized, he was intent on getting some additional money into the state coffers.

Bill is a native of Niagara Falls, NY. For those of you who haven't been to Niagara Falls, NY since, oh, since Marilyn Monroe and Joseph Cotton made the famous movie ('Niagara'), let me assure  you that it is not the romance capital it once was. It has declined into a state of disrepair and ill repute. There are a lot of well meaning citizens who have attempted to revitalize the area. Most notably, the Seneca nation has infused a lot of cash into the casino business. Unfortunately, the beautiful casino has not generated revenue for the rest of the city: If your destination is the casino, you tend to stay in the casino. You don't leave the multimillion dollar facility to grab a coke at the Wilson's Farm or a meal at the Como. PS - the Como, on Pine Avenue is a fantastic Italian restaurant. Well worth a trip.

The United Office Bldg
But, what does remains in Niagara Falls is Kitsch with a capital K. It was once THE honeymoon capital of the US. Bill maintains that it could reclaim this title if it caters to and targets same-sex couples who want to tie the knot. It has some beautiful art deco buildings (Carl Paladino did a great refurbishment of the old United Office Building) and the beauty and splendor of the Falls is second to none (well, maybe Victoria Falls - but who goes THERE?).

The strip of motels on Niagara Falls Blvd, (The Driftwood, the Sands, The Caravan, The Bit O' Paris), complete with heart -shaped jacuzzi tubs, flocked wallpaper and crushed velvet window treatments, may entice those couples who go for the 1940s glitz and glamour. Tim Gunn may cringe, but I personally know some couples who would delight in such decor! And, the Maid of the Mist? The name alone is made for love!

Bill was so excited about the prospect of the gay marriage bill that he emailed Mayor Dyster (the mayor of Niagara Falls) and proposed his idea. Now, remember, Canada already recognizes same-sex marriages and has completely missed the boat in Niagara Falls, Ontario. They have made it 'family friendly' and 'tasteful'. What if we just gave into some questionable taste and embraced the "over the top" sensibility that is Niagara Falls! We're 80% of the way there.

I think I told you about Bill's "Don't be an asshole" campaign aimed at Buffalo drivers. But, I think this one has legs.  Mayor Dyster: TAKE NOTICE. This is a fantastic idea. Tie the knot in Niagara Falls; make Niagara Falls the gay marriage capital of the world.
And, Bill's slogan?


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