July 19, 2011 By Christian Murray
The recent marriage equality vote in Albany inspired the management of
Molly Blooms Victorian bar and restaurant in Sunnyside, Queens to make a
generous offer: they decided to hold a raffle offering a free wedding
reception to one lucky same sex couple after gay nuptials become legal on
The offer led a flood of entries from far and wide and on Wednesday
evening, July 13, 2011 a pool of over 40 couples gathered at the new bar
and restaurant to witness one couple win.
Janice Velten the popular mail carrier at Sunnyside Post Office for the
past 40 years, and her partner Patrice Pfirmann a civilian employee with
the police department, had their names pulled from the hat as the bar
erupted in cheers. These local Sunnyside residents have been partners for
the past 24 years. “I’ve lived here in Sunnyside for 24 years and my
partner Janice has lived here for 42 years,” Pfirmann said.
The free reception won by the couple will include a three-hour open bar
and buffet lunch at Molly Blooms with a world-class professional
photographer on site to record the sights and sounds of the big day. As
offers go, it’s a remarkable one.
“It is important to be part of this groundbreaking civil rights victory,”
Ciaran Staunton, owner of Molly Blooms, explained. “This is a wonderful
moment for New York State and all of its residents.”
The recently opened Molly Blooms restaurant and beer garden is home to
Sunnyside’s progressive community of writers, artists, Irish traditional
musicians, politicians and community activists. The Victorian style bar
and restaurant has already emerged as one of the most distinctive venues
in the five boroughs.