LA Pride moving to Hollywood in June after two-year COVID hiatus
After a two-year hiatus, LA Pride will make the move to Hollywood in June, leaving its familiar parade route in West Hollywood.
Organizers promise the storied parade will branch out in more ways than just a location shift, and this year’s activities will build more experiences that represent a broader range of the LGBTQ community.
Event organizers have previously been criticized for hosting a Pride event that was too white, too corporate, dismissive of transgender people and tone-deaf to racial inequality.
The first LA Pride Parade in Los Angeles County set off from the corner of Hollywood Boulevard in June 1970 and organizers see the 2022 event as a return to where it all started.
“The fact Hollywood has a significant community of color, large transgender population and the L.A. LGBT Center is located there is a big step in continuing inclusive programming,” LA Pride board member Gerald Garth said in a statement.
The parade route and programming activities will be announced on LA Pride’s social media channels in the coming weeks.
Christopher Street West, producer of LA Pride, says the annual parade and festival will be moved from West Hollywood in 2021. A new location hasn’t been announced.
Since 1979, West Hollywood has hosted some version of a parade on Santa Monica Boulevard. Over the years, the event grew, and just before the pandemic, it drew hundreds of thousands of people to the city. But in 2020, West Hollywood and organizers behind LA Pride parted ways.
This year’s event will take place June 12, one week after West Hollywood’s own “WeHo Pride” weekend. On Tuesday, the West Hollywood City Council is expected to give final approval to a third-party vendor to produce the city’s inaugural event, marking a return to in-person events since the start of the pandemic.
Christopher Street West, the nonprofit that produces LA Pride, held a virtual event in 2020 — the parade’s 50th anniversary — amid concerns over gatherings during the coronavirus pandemic.
This year’s parade will focus on “generational, experiential and geographic diversity” that will extend beyond the event weekend, organizers said. Full programming details have not been released, but officials hinted that activities will be centered on the transgender community and family-centered events.
“We’re looking to do some more family-oriented activations. That’s not something that we’ve been able to historically focus on,” LA Pride board member Noah Gonzales said. “We know it’s super important to the community, and we actually have several parents now who are on our board.”
Garth added that “we’re excited to show some great geographic diversity, but then also centering the culture of those communities — be it ethnicity, race, gender expression, body diversity and a number of really integral parts of how we identify as a community.”
LA Pride 2022 will feature both virtual and in-person events, and organizers said they are keeping an eye on COVID-19 safety and federal guidelines while also making sure that people can safely socialize outdoors.
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