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LA Pride 2020: All in-person events are cancelled

LA Pride

The crowd at Los Angeles’ first LA Pride Parade on June 28, 1970, which took place along Hollywood Boulevard. Photo: ONE Archives at the USC Libraries.

WEST HOLLYWOOD — LA Pride has cancelled all in-person events for the rest of 2020, but will still celebrate its 50th anniversary in a digital way.

The decision was probably inevitable.

California and Los Angeles County continue to grapple with COVID-19, trying  to reduce the number of new infections and not overburden the health care system. In the past few days, the state and county have loosened some restrictions, slowly and cautiously trying to return to a sense of normalcy.

But Gov. Gavin Newsom and other public officials have said that large gatherings of more than 10 people would most likely not take place until the fall, at the earliest.

Christopher Street West, the 501(c)3 non-profit that produces the annual LA Pride Parade and Festival, made its announcement late last week.

“Our community has always adapted, changed and become more resilient in the face of uncertain times,” Estevan Montemayor, president of the Christopher Street West board of directors, said in a statement. “Although we cannot celebrate Pride with a Festival or Parade, (Christopher Street West) will make sure that the spirit of Pride is not forgotten.”

“The 50th anniversary will be one to remember regardless of a physical experience this year,” Montemayor said.

Christopher Street West executive director Madonna Cacciatore said that “we must remember that Pride is not just about a specific month or weekend in June. Los Angeles’ LGBTQ+ community lives and breathes Pride every day.”

More details about how LA Pride will virtually celebrate will be announced before June, the statement said.

About the author

Phillip Zonkel

Award-winning journalist Phillip Zonkel spent 17 years at Long Beach's Press-Telegram, where he was the first reporter in the paper's history to have a beat covering the city's vibrant LGBTQ. He also created and ran the popular and innovative LGBTQ news blog, Out in the 562.

He won two awards and received a nomination for his reporting on the local LGBTQ community, including a two-part investigation that exposed anti-gay bullying of local high school students and the school districts' failure to implement state mandated protections for LGBTQ students.

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