Several gay couples married at midnight, the earliest moment possible as New York's gay marriage law took effect on Sunday, The New York Times reported.

After more than a decade together, gay rights activists Kitty Lambert, 54, and Cheryle Rudd, 53, married in a ceremony at Niagara Falls.

The women, who together have 5 children and 12 grandchildren, married surrounded by roughly 100 close friends and family, and with a rainbow-lit Niagara Falls as a backdrop.

Other cities, including Hudson, Albany and Long Island, also hosted midnight weddings.

Lambert and Rudd's ceremony was attended by several of the state lawmakers who approved the law last month and officiated over by Mayor Paul Dyster.

The women stood at the foot of the Falls, which were lit, for the first time, in the six colors that symbolize gay pride.

Meanwhile, two men were the first to marry in Long Island.

Frank Fuertes and Patrick Simeone tied the knot in a small ceremony with a handful of friends. The couple, together nearly 23 years, married in Quebec three years earlier.

At the state capital, Albany Mayor Jerry Jennings also married couples at the earliest possible moment on Sunday, as New York became the largest state to legalize marriage equality.

In New York City, where Mayor Michael Bloomberg is expected to officiate over the wedding of two top staffers, marriage bureaus will host a marathon series of celebrations.

Some newlyweds will face protesters – and in some cases counter protesters – on their big day.