From City News Service
WEST HOLLYWOOD — The LA Pride Parade, celebrating the transgender, lesbian, gay and bisexual communities, was held along Santa Monica Boulevard Sunday, with organizers expecting more than 400,000 spectators and participants.
The parade began at Crescent Heights Boulevard, and continued west along Santa Monica Boulevard to Robertson Boulevard.
In connection with LA Pride’s efforts at reducing hate and ignorance toward the transgender community, the parade’s traditional moment of silence at noon was dedicated to members of the community killed in hate crimes, said Steve Ganzell, a board co-president of Christopher Street West, the event’s producer.
Singer Demi Lovato was the grand marshal while the couples who were the plaintiffs in the lawsuit that overturned California’s ban on same-sex marriage, Paul Katami and Jeff Zarrillo and Kris Perry and Sandy Stier, will be the community grand marshals.
“The LA Pride Parade is based on celebrating the TLGB community and the people and organizations that have helped make progress in terms of equality,” parade chair Tom Pardoe said.
“This year’s community grand marshals are the epitome of that idea and have proven themselves as valuable champions for the success of the LGBt fight for inclusion.”
Mayor Eric Garcetti, Assembly Speaker Emeritus John A Perez, D-Los Angeles, and state Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, were among the participants in the parade, which had about 130 entries.
The parade prompted the closure of Santa Monica Boulevard from Fairfax Avenue to Doheny Drive; Crescent Heights Boulevard from Romaine Street to Fountain Avenue; and streets one block north and south of Santa Monica Boulevard from Fairfax Avenue to La Peer Drive.
The parade has been held every year since 1970, except for 1973 when infighting over crude displays the previous two years left the organizers in disarray. The parade was held in Hollywood until 1979, when it moved to West Hollywood.