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Mamaroneck Stores Anticipate Surge in Marriages

MAMARONECK, N.Y. -- Most of Mamaroneck's wedding-related businesses haven't seen a boost from the same-sex marriage law going into effect July 24, but Siren Boutique says it has.

A Siren Boutique patron came into the Mamaroneck Avenue store last week to buy a wedding gift for a lesbian couple who would be getting married Sunday, said Maria DiLeonardo, owner of the alternative apparel shop.

"It can be a potential spike in business," said DiLeonardo, who had another client buy a gift for a gay couple who also got married Sunday. "We have a big bridal following and we're looking forward to accommodating different types of weddings."

Jamie LeVine is Siren's website designer and DiLeonardo's life-long friend. "It opened up a whole new market of brides," LeVine said.

Just down the street, another Mamaroneck Avenue bridal wear store hasn't seen such an immediate effect, but The Bridal Shop is hopeful the influx of couples getting married will help them too.

"If there's a boost in business, that sounds good to me, whoever it's from," said Sammy Warshaw, manager of The Bridal Shop.

David Juhren is the executive director at the LOFT, a White Plains-based community services center for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered individuals in the lower Hudson Valley.

Juhren said there are many same-sex couples waiting to get married and it could generate close to $400 million in revenue. Such a potentially large impact on local businesses has been one of the driving incentives for passing the law, Juhren said.

Citing a 2007 report from former New York City Comptroller Bill Thompson, an article in The New York Daily News said approximately 56,000 couples would wed in New York if the same-sex marriage bill were to be passed, which translates into revenue.

"It's a money maker, but it doesn't really effect our business," said Eddy Cortes, manager of Roberts Department Store.

Although several stores are skeptical, Mamaroneck florists, bakeries, fine gift shops and other marriage-related industries are hopeful they will also experience an increase in customers with the legalization of gay marriage .

What kind of impact do you think same-sex marriages will have in Westchester County? Comment below, on Facebook or Twitter .

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