The LA Pride Parade, long a summer staple, is returning to Hollywood this June, and bringing a month-long series of programs and celebrations. Hollywood was the original location for the LA Pride Parade when it began in 1970. The parade had moved to West Hollywood in 1979. Due to COVID-19, the event was cancelled altogether for the last two years. Come Sunday, June 12th
the parade will be back in the heart of Hollywood, along with further programming. And LA Pride month will also be flying a new Progress Pride Flag that reflects greater diversity in the LGBTQIA+ community. The parade will be produced by Christopher Street West, and is considered the largest pride parade in the U.S.
According to L.A. Pride, "the organization is thrilled to come together this year to commemorate the historic anniversary at the parade’s first and original location,” Gerald Garth, vice president of programs and initiatives, said in a statement. “As a mission-driven and community-centered non-profit organization, CSW recognizes that LGBTQ+ experiences of Los Angeles are broader than just one neighborhood. Considering feedback gathered since the pandemic began, we are committed to creating experiences and access to our entire community, including many of those who have been most underserved and underrepresented.”
Garth adds “We considered many options for the parade, both traditional and progressive. Hollywood as the original historical location for the first Los Angeles protest 50 years ago was a natural choice to honor what Pride really means and where Pride will go in the future.”
The location of the LA LGBT Center in Hollywood was one factor in the decision to make the parade a part of Hollywood again this year. “The fact Hollywood has a significant community of color, large transgender population is… a big step in continuing inclusive programming,” Garth said.
LA Pride board coordinator Landon Boren says “LA Pride is excited to return to Hollywood! LA Pride is the world’s first permitted Pride parade advocating for gay rights, which originated in Hollywood. Now that we are able to gather safely and responsibly, LA Pride looks forward to celebrating Pride 2022 at its historic start.”
The parade route begins with a kickoff at Hollywood and Cahuenga Boulevards, makes a left turn on Highland Ave, before turning left on Sunset and ending its U-shaped trajectory at Sunset and Cahuenga, Boren explains.
Along with the excitement of the parade, the Hollywood Partnership is planning a Pride Village community street fair on Hollywood Blvd., between Cahuenga Blvd. and Vine St., all day on June 12 from 10am until 10pm.
Boren adds that “We look forward to encouraging the community to remember Pride began as a protest. Pride began because those who were most marginalized had enough and did something about it.” He explains “We stand on the shoulders of those individuals, more specifically Black and Latina transgender women and femme and genderqueer folks. While we celebrate, we can’t forget there is still work to be done as legislation and society still forges attacks on our communities. We should be reminded that Pride is still and will always be a call to action.”
Embracing that pertinent message, 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, too.
It’s more than time to feel the Pride in Hollywood.