Same-sex couples are now legally allowed to marry in Australia after the Marriage Act changes became law at midnight last night.
The first marriages will now be held in the second week of January as celebrants around the country from today will no longer state the union is between “a man and a woman”.
Today we announce the finalists that have been selected for a chance to win this amazing $40,000 wedding.
The finalists have been chosen from all of the entries received and judged by a select panel from the wedding suppliers, Eikon, Gay Sydney Australia and Mr Gay Pride Australia.
Each of the entrants had to submit a statement as to why they should win the competition as well as any other photos or videos that might help in their selection. Those are listed below for the finalists.
1. Christopher & Joshua
On the 22nd March 2014 I asked my partner of 8 years to marry me while watching the sunrise on Hamilton Island. Heavy rain in the lead up had me nervous that it was going to be a washout but the sun prevailed and he said yes.
It has now been over 3 years and we have been patiently waiting and it feels like the clouds are now parting and that day will come very soon.
In the years we have been waiting to marry we have lost loved ones along the way who would have loved to celebrate with us and now we are approaching the passing of the law it feels almost unreal, love really does win.
To win Australia’s first legal gay wedding would allow us to celebrate with our family and friends while also sharing it with the country that love comes first. It would also allow us to marry sooner to ensure all of our family and friends would be able to attend and celebrate.
Why should we win? I think we all win just by having the laws reflected to make us equal. We want everyone to have the chance to win so good luck to everyone 🙂
2. Jessica & Bernadette
My partner and I have been engaged for many years just waiting for the opportunity to get married and share our love story with our families. We have been struggling to get funds to have a magical day.
We have had a whirlwind romance like something out of the movies. We met and work and all it took was for Bernadette to smile at me and then I was in love.
We have managed to create a life full of love and happiness but we are missing that one thing we do desperately want and that is to proclaim our love in front of our family and friends.
The day the SSM results were announced we were sitting in the car and we both were brought to tears because we were so much closer to being equal with the rest of the world.
3. Dylan & Dean
I (Dylan) proposed to Dean in December 2015, just before our 6 year anniversary. I proposed not only because I felt it was the right time, but because I knew that Dean would be the only person I would ever want to share my life with.
Our time together has been as normal as anyone else’s – from jobs to holidays, dramas, pets, property and a love for enjoying life together. However, whilst our lives are relatively normal, our bond has always been something extraordinary.
For us, this wedding would not only provide the opportunity to legalise our love and achievement, something we are so eager to do. More importantly, this wedding would be an opportunity to demonstrate a positive example to our community of a young successful long-term relationship, which is as rich and fulfilling as our heterosexual counterparts.
Without winning this competition, it’s likely our wedding would take place in 2020, however, if we did win this incredible prize, it would mean our families, and 62% of Australian’s get to celebrate our love a lot sooner.
4. Emily & Madeleine
The first thought I had about Maddy when she walked into the room was, “I can’t believe you’re late it’s the first day of class!”. We had both decided that July 17th 2012 was the perfect time to start learning Australian Sign language at the Brisbane Library.
If we hadn’t met then we would have met through mutual friends 6 months later when I started at the University of Queensland. Or maybe we would have met years later, working in a hospital together, her a psychologist and me an occupational therapist.
Or maybe we met earlier, when, despite me growing up 130kms away for the rest of my childhood, we lived a street over from each other for a few months in 1996.
The day I proposed I wasn’t nervous. I had planned to pop the question at a picnic breakfast in the avocado grove in the rainforest retreat where we were staying. But the coffee fiend that she is, she took the pot and I missed the moment.
Later that day in a coffee plantation cafe, we ordered lattes and I slipped inside to carry them out. Her saucer decorated with a silver spoon stamped with the words “Will you marry me?” and a ring.
Both our parents wanted to start planning the wedding immediately, but we felt that we couldn’t have a true celebration of our commitment to each other with the cloud of illegitimacy hanging over us.
As a little girl, I always dreamed of my beautiful white wedding. I was 10 years old when the news told me that my Prime Minister had changed the law so that marriage could only be “between a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others”.
I knew I liked girls the way I felt I was supposed to like boys. I realised that I could never marry someone I truly loved, I felt like the world didn’t want me to be happy.
Now I am 23 and after asking my beautiful partner and 24 million of my fellow Australians I am ready to get married. If we could be considered for this prize I would be honoured to share my wedding with every little girl who is worried she will never be allowed to marry the person they truly love.
For me, I’m excited about the wedding, but I’m much more excited for our marriage. Every day I think I love her more than anyone could ever love anyone, but then a new day comes and I love her even more.
5. Michael & Benjamin
We have been together for nearly three years now and the moment came a few months ago when we both asked the question “Will you marry me?” on one magical weekend. Ben asked first by taking me to the place that brought us together. He woke me up at 5 am with a bag packed and we hopped on a train to a destination unknown.
He held the secret close to his chest until the last minute where at the airport he handed me a travel purse, with a note attached to a little Mickey Mouse revealing we were on our way to Disneyland in Hong Kong! That next day as the park opened he wanted to get a photo outside the Disney Castle and it was there that the photographer was just about to take the shot when Ben went down on one knee and to my shock asked, “Will you marry me?.”
Well the photographer went nuts with excitement and the family in the line just looked confused, but it could not have been a more perfect day.
I knew something might have occurred on this mystery holiday, so I came prepared for an engagement of my own. Within a week of knowing Ben after our first date I knew in my gut that I think this was it for me and he would be the one.
I sat down and wrote a letter that consisted of 365 words with the last few words being “Will you marry me?”. For a year I recorded myself each day saying one word and edited the video together into one long video.
Ben and I asked who would ask who and he wanted to ask first, so I sat on this video until he had asked the question. The day after his proposal I got my laptop out, surrounded it with roses and he watched my love letter of 365 days.
He said yes right back of course!
Winning this competition would mean we could get married sooner then we thought. We are struggling as it is to try and save for a wedding and this could give us a wedding we could only dream of!
Last Updated on Dec 9, 2017