Photography by Jesse Winter
Jimmy Van Bramer, 42, a New York City councilman who represents portions of Queens, wed his partner, Dan Hendrick, 41, on Saturday, July 28 at Studio Square in Long Island City, Queens. Van Bramer wore a suit by Calvin Klein and Hendrick wore one by J. Crew. Most of the food and catering for the event came from and took place in the councilman's district. The wedding favors were produced by Malu, a Long Island City sweet shop. The photographer, Jesse Winter, is a local artist, and the flowers were also produced locally, by Brooklyn Grange a rooftop farm in Long Island City. Audrey I. Pheffer, the Queens County Clerk, officiated.
Jimmy and Dan met in May 1999 at a fundraiser for a gay community center in Queens. As Van Bramer explained in a New York Times vows column: "He was this handsome redhead with glasses,” Van Bramer recalled. “I just kind of said to myself Who is that?... As we were standing there talking, I went through my checklist. I thought, He’s good looking, he’s smart, he’s employed and he’s able to talk about politics. He met every one of my requirements.”
According to Dan, he also had a checklist: “I thought he was sweet, handsome, intelligent and, above all, I really loved his political activism. He wanted to make some changes in the world.”
A statement issued by the couple said: "We are overjoyed that so many family and friends witnessed our wedding Saturday night. For over 13 years we have been in a committed and loving relationship, yet before marriage equality passed last year, we were denied the right marry one another. At this time, we are grateful for our loving families, friends, and the numerous neighbors, constituents and even complete strangers who wished us well on our union. Our happiness at having fulfilled our dream of getting married knows no bounds. We are grateful to live in a State and City that recognize that we are equal and should not be discriminated against. And we'll redouble our efforts to make sure that all Americans can get married to the one they love."
They haven’t planned a honeymoon just yet.