When the midnight hour comes, wedding bells will be ringing in Minnesota. At 12:01, same-sex marriage will be legal, and FOX 9 News spoke with a couple who will pioneer a historic first.
Jeff Isaacson and Al Giraud are ready to go. They've got their rings, the Vera Wang tuxedo, and will soon become the first same-sex male couple to legally marry in Hennepin County.
"I am so ready for this to happen. It seems like it's been a long time, but really, it's been a short period of time since we found out we would be able to get married to today," Isaacson said.
The two met 11 years ago, and they have wanted to wed for a long time but also wanted to do so in their home state.
"We knew the day would come," Giraud said. "We are ecstatic that it's now."
When they take their vows in Minneapolis on the steps of City Hall, the newlyweds will be thinking about those who fought for marriage equality.
"All of the hard work, all of the effort, all of the fighting that has gone into it -- it's something you can't ignore," Isaacson said.
On Wednesday afternoon, Mayor R.T. Rybak prepared to officiate 42 same-sex marriage services starting at midnight. Meanwhile, City Hall was getting a festive makeover.
"It's huge," said Roger Beck as he prepared the floral arrangements with Wolfgang Littlewolf. "It's great to be a part of history. We want this to be something that they will always remember -- and it will anyway, but we want to dress it up and make them have a very special occasion."
While the nuptials take place in Minneapolis, 11 same-sex weddings will be held at the Como Zoo Conservatory in St. Paul.
"Having 11 in 24 hours is definitely different for us," Michelle Furrer admitted. "Eleven is a record for us."
Record day or otherwise, it's certainly one that will go down in history -- but Isaacson and Giraud told FOX 9 News they hope one day, same-sex marriage won't be thought of in those terms.
"I keep thinking my 15 minutes of fame will be over soon, and I look forward to the day when people will no longer remember who the first gay couple is or who the first male gay couple is because it won't make a difference anymore," Isaacson said.
The doors of City Hall opened to 300 event ticket holders at 10:30 p.m. Wednesday, and a special program began 15 minutes later. Ceremonies are expected to continue through 6 a.m.
Those without tickets can watch the events streaming live at http://www.theuptake.org.