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Updated Friday, December 28, 2012 at 02:07 PM

Maine gears up for same-sex marriage

By DAVID SHARP
Associated Press

A handful of communities are gearing up for special hours when Maine's same-sex marriage goes into effect.

Maine's largest city, Portland, will open at midnight to provide licenses as soon as the law goes into effect. So will a neighboring town, Falmouth. Others including Bangor, Brunswick and Augusta will open later with special Saturday hours to issue marriage licenses.

Portland will have notaries for those who want marry immediately.

Voters approved gay marriage in November, making Maine and two other states the first to do so by popular vote. The law is already in effect in Washington state; Maryland's takes effect on Jan. 1.

Suzanne Blackburn and Joanie Kunian of Portland hope to get their license at midnight. They say their grandson wants them to get married on Valentine's Day.


ROBERT F. BUKATY / AP
In this Nov. 1, 2012 photo, Sarah Dowling, left, speaks at a gay marriage rally, accompanied by her partner of 18 years, Linda Wolfe, and their daughter, Maya Dowling-Wolfe, in Portland, Maine.




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